Summary: This sermon deals with the three dimensions of our faith from Isaiah's vision of the Lord found in the King James Version of Isaiah 6:1-9, "Woe", "Lo," and "Go." This can also be looked upon as the dimensions of confession, cleansing, and commission.
I grew up my whole life under the Protestant wing of the faith. My family attended the Methodist church as I was growing up. I came to know Jesus as my Savior and Lord while attending an Assembly of God home fellowship. Later I attended an Assembly of God church. Afterwards I helped to form the first Calvary Chapel in Las Vegas, which later became a non-denominational church.
I went to seminary and graduated with a Masters of Theology and Talbot School of Theology, the graduate program of Biola, and received my Masters of Divinity equivalence degree at Fuller Theological Seminary.
After receiving my Masters in Theology I returned to my old church in Las Vegas, Hallelujah Christian Fellowship, and took over as its senior pastor. After 10 years we brought the church under the Foursquare denomination. I then moved to Mesquite, Nevada, where I pastor a Foursquare church.
You might say I’ve seen my share of denominationalism and what I’ve found is that we need to become a whole lot more biblical in our faith and calling, and a whole lot less denominational.
When I say we have to become more biblical in our faith and less denominational, this comes from the many conversations I’ve had over the years. I’d like to focus on two of them with you.
The first was when I was thinking about attending seminary, I went to a friend who owned a Christian bookstore and asked him for a book on Theology. He asked if I was a Calvinist or an Arminiest. Having no idea what he was talking about I said, “Neither, I’m a Biblicist.” He just kind of chuckled.
The second incident happened when I was in seminary. A theology professor took a stance that Calvinism was correct in every area. Afterwards I asked if I could meet with him, and asked why he didn’t mention the other Scriptures that spoke against the Calvinist stance.
He said, “Dennis, I believe that the majority of the Scriptures support this position.” I then asked if there were other Scriptures that supported an opposing point of view, why then didn’t he give a balanced view of God’s word.
This is what denominationalism does. It teaches as gospel doctrinal positions rather than teaching the whole of God’s word and acknowledging that we’re not going to know everything that goes on in the mind of God. In other words, there needs to be a lot more balance in the teaching of God’s word, and not just denominational talking points.
In the church there’s a whole lot of formalism and control over everything that is of God, and in the process we have lost a lot of the zeal that God would desire for us to have; a zeal for God’s word, a zeal for prayer, a zeal for the Holy Spirit, a zeal of the lost, and a zeal for God’s calling.
There is a quotation I’ve heard and believe to be true, and that is the church today is so subnormal that the church we read about in the New Testament seems abnormal. In other words, what was once considered normal and God’s plan and purpose for the church now seems abnormal if kept.
So we need to wrestle with what it means to be a Christian and God’s calling for the church. And this is going to take both vision and passion.
The church today is going through a paradigm shift, but not for the better. In its attempt to become more palatable to the world it has lost its way. Today I’d like to share with you what I see as the answer. I call it three-dimensional faith, or the three dimensions of our faith as taken from the Book of Isaiah, the King James Version.
“In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory. And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke. Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts. Then flew one of the seraphims unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away, and thy sin purged. Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me. And he said, Go, and tell this people...” (Isaiah 6:1-9 KJV)