Summary: First in a series on sharing our faith. Prompted by the title of Pippert’s book.
OUT OF THE SALTSHAKER AND INTO THE WORLD
Part One—Worshipping Hearts are Willing Hearts
Sunday, July 22, 2007
Pastor Brian Matherlee
If you could meet anyone personally who would it be?
The story is told about President James A. Garfield’s first Sunday in Washington after his inauguration. A member of the cabinet insisted that a cabinet meeting be called at 10 a.m. the following day, which was Sunday, to handle a matter of grave importance.
President Garfield said that he had something to do at that time. The cabinet member insisted that the President break his previous engagement. GARFIELD REFUSED. The cabinet member said, "I would be interested to know with whom you could have an engagement so important that it cannot be broken."
Garfield replied, "I will be as frank as you are. MY ENGAGEMENT IS WITH THE LORD TO MEET HIM AT HIS HOUSE AND AT HIS TABLE AT 10:30 A.M. TOMORROW AND I WILL BE THERE."
The worship of God begins with awe, exposes our need, and results in our service.
1. The Unrivaled God (6:1-4)
a. The vision of God in the temple comes at the end of King Uzziah’s reign.
i. 52 years of stability had been enjoyed by Judah. He had become King at the age of 16.
ii. Uzziah did what was right in the eyes of the Lord.
iii. He was able to subdue Judah’s enemies and had fortified the capital city.
iv. The death of this king would have been a real blow to Isaiah and the kingdom of Judah. We could liken it to the death of Roosevelt.
v. When Isaiah sees the Lord sitting on the throne it is meant to assure him that God is in control no matter who is king.
b. The vision Isaiah sees is overwhelmed with the majesty and size of God.
i. Brennan Manning, writes this: “The whole universe is too small to contain his immensity. We can no more catch a hurricane in a shrimp net or Niagara Falls in a coffee cup than we can grasp the infinity of God’s reality.”
ii. The throne is high and exalted
iii. The train of His robe fills the temple
iv. The seraphs are present
1. Seraph means “burning one” and they were the ministering beings in the temple of God.
2. They cover their eyes because of the greater brightness and glory of God. They cover their feet out of humility
3. They proclaim the truest aspect of God-holiness (holy, holy, holy speaks of the absolute fullness of that characteristic)/and the truest evidence of God-the whole earth is full of His glory. The power of the proclamation shakes the doorposts and thresholds and the temple is filled with smoke.
c. There is no equal to our God.
i. As I read this account I know:
1. God is in control. Do you ever feel life is out of control?
2. God is absolutely good and pure.
3. God is evident all around us.
2. The Undone Sinner (6:5-7)
a. Isaiah’s encounter makes him aware of his own condition.
b. Isaiah expected to die!
i. Moses was told that he could only see God’s glory as he passed by.
ii. Numerous passages Isaiah would have been familiar with spoke of impending doom for those who saw the Lord.
c. Isaiah mentions his unclean lips. And he associates his sinfulness because of the people he lives among. He is absolutely right that he has no business being in the presence of Almighty God. But God takes care of that.
i. “You will never deal effectively with your sin without first realizing who God is. When you study His Word and begin to grasp His holiness, a deep reverence for Him grows in your heart. You, like Isaiah, are humbled before Him and realize that you fall far short of His holiness. Yet before discouragement can creep in, you also realize that God loves you deeply”. (Charles Stanley)
d. The seraph takes a coal from the altar and touches his lips. (The High Priest would take coals from the fire in the Holy of holies on the day of Atonement each year and use them in the sacrifices for the people of Israel.)
e. When we truly encounter God:
i. We realize how sinful we are.
ii. We realize the poor condition of the world we live in.
iii. We realize our inability to stand before Him.
f. God realizes all of this and makes provision for our sin. He always moves towards us in forgiveness when we recognize and are repentant of our sinful condition.
3. The Unreached World (6:8)
a. After Isaiah has seen God and been made clean before the Lord he hears a conversation.
b. The conversation is between the Godhead; Father, Son and Holy Spirit.