Summary: We Have A Desperate Need For Purity Before God -- And This Can Only Be Obtained Through A Relationship With The Pure & Spotless Lamb Of God!
1. Review What The People Of Judah Forgot: (Acc. To 1:1-17)
- They Forgot About Their Faithful Father!
- They Forgot About Their Wicked Nature!
- They Forgot About Their Merciful & Undeserved Deliverance!
- They Forgot About Their True Purpose!
- They Forgot About Their Continual Need!
2. We Must Never Forget About These Things In Our Lives Either!
- Especially Our True, Wicked Nature!
- Clearly & Vividly Described In 1:4-6 - “Ah sinful nation, a people laden with iniquity, a seed of evildoers, children that are corrupters: they have forsaken the LORD, they have provoked the Holy One of Israel unto anger, they are gone away backward. Why should ye be stricken any more? ye will revolt more and more: the whole head is sick, and the whole heart faint. From the sole of the foot even unto the head there is no soundness in it; but wounds, and bruises, and putrifying sores: they have not been closed, neither bound up, neither mollified with ointment.”
3. What Does God Require From Us? (In Our Wicked Nature!)
- Find In 1:16-17 - “Wash you, make you clean; put away the evil of your doings from before mine eyes; cease to do evil; Learn to do well; seek judgment, relieve the oppressed, judge the fatherless, plead for the widow.”
- Cleansing - But How Can I Be Clean, Unless Someone Else Washes Me?!
- Repentance - But How Can I Put Away My Evil, Unless Someone Else Takes It Away From Me?
- Righteousness - But How Can I Learn To Do Well, Unless Someone Else Teaches Me?
- Because Of Our Nature, It Is Impossible For Us To Do What He Requires!
4. We Must Be Purified!
- IE: Lived In New York During My High-School Years, Along The Banks Of The Susquehanna River - Beautiful But Dirty - Sewage Treatment Facility Across The River (Sometimes The Smell Was Unbearable) - Even The City Water Was Known To Be Frequently Contaminated - We Needed Pure Water - We Couldn’t Purify It Ourselves (Didn’t Know How), But We Had To Rely On Someone Who Could To Provide Us With Our Clean, Fresh Drinking Water!
- Isaiah, In Chapter 1, Describes That We Cannot Purify Ourselves, Because Of Our Deep Contamination, But That He Can Purify Us!
I. The Availability Of Purification (1:18)
- IE: Some Services Are Only Available Through A Single Source - Customer Called In About Some Stock Certificates His Mother Owned - She Couldn’t Take Them To The Grocery Store To Sell, Or To Her Next-Door Neighbor, Or Even To Her Church - She Would Have To Go Through A Licensed Stockbroker To Sell Them
- There is Only One Source Of Purification For A Sinner! Many Are Looking For Another Source, But There Is Only One!
- To Whom Is Purification Available? (To Those Who:)
- Repent Of Their Sin - “Come Now” - Leave What Is Behind, And Come Before God!
- Recognize Their Sin - “Reason Together” - Not An Invitation To Debate, But A Summons To See Themselves The Way God Sees Them!
- Have Remorse Over Their Sin - “Reason” - Includes Conviction, Sorrow & Anguish Over Sin
- Reveal Their Sin - Through Confession To The Lord
- Rely Upon God’s Ability To Purify Them! - “Reason” - Includes God’s Convincing Them Of His Ability
- Through Whom Is Purification Available?
- Not Through Yourselves! Because You Are Completely Stained! (1:4-6) How Will My Sins Become “White As Snow”?
- Not Through Your Animal Sacrifices! Even Your Pure, Spotless Lambs! Because God Has Already Rejected Them! (1:11 - “To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me? saith the LORD: I am full of the burnt offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of lambs, or of he goats.”)
- How Will My Sins Become Pure “As Wool”?
- Through The “Lamb Of God, Which Taketh Away The Sin Of The World!” (John 1:29)
- This Verse Provides A Glimpse Into The Character Of The One Through Whom Purification Is Available! He Is The Only True, Pure Lamb!
- 1 Peter 1:19 - “But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:”
- He Will Clean Your Sins - “As White As Snow”! He Will Change Your Sins - “As Wool”!
* What About Your Need For Purification?
- Who Is Your Focus On? Your Own Self? Works? God? What Is Your Response? Repent / Recognize / Remorse / Reveal / Rely?
II. The Requirement For Purification (1:19-20)
- IE: Ruth Lilly Is The Sole Heir Of The Eli Lilly Fortune, As The Sole-Surviving Great-Granddaughter Of Eli Lilly - She Is Now 87 Years Old, And Still Lives In Indianapolis - The Value Of Her Estate Is Estimated At One Billion Dollars - Ms. Lilly Is Divorced, And Never Had Any Children - Wouldn’t You Like To Be Included In Her Will? - What Would It Take To Inherit Even A Small Portion Of Her Estate? It Would Require A Relationship (She Wouldn’t Give Anything To Someone She Doesn’t Know), And A Close Relationship At That (She Would Give Much Of Anything To Someone She Didn’t Like!) What Is The Requirement For Purification From God?