Overview of Isaiah 6-12
In these six chapters, God is pronouncing judgement on his people starting first with Isaiah in Isaiah 6, then for the people of Judah in Isaiah 7-8, and finally for the people of Israel in Isaiah 9-10. God’s redeeming grace to His people is revealed in Isaiah 11 with the prophecy of Christ’s birth. Isaiah 12 is thus a revealing of what it will be like to live in the knowledge of God’s redemption of His people with the coming of the Messiah.
“A Pattern for Weekly/Daily Worship”
Today’s passage is one of the most widely used models for corporate worship service structures. I know I use it, and it is one of my favorite Bible passages. Isaiah’s vision of the Lord is tremendous and powerful.He sees God on a throne with a long train on His robe that fills the temple. God is circled with seraphs who are calling to one another over the Lord saying, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of His glory.”
When Isaiah sees God for who He is in His glorious splendor and holiness, Isaiah then is faced with the reality of his sinful life and self. In planning worship I try to follow this pattern when selecting “Call to Worship” material, opening responses, and opening songs of worship and praise. After declaring who God is to us and worshipping Him through music, our pastor leads the congregation in prayer where he normally directs us to a time of confession asking God’s forgiveness of our wrong doings.
In verses 6 and 7 the angel of the Lord takes a coal from the altar and places it to the lips of Isaiah saying,“See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.” This part of the passage reminds us that as we confess our sins before God that the blood of Christ then covers us and cleanses us from all unrighteousness.
Verse 8a is the short sermon of this passage. God issues His word as a challenge saying, “Whom shall I send and who will go for us?” The sermons from God’s word are how we hear from the Lord in our weekly worship gatherings. Through gifted men and women who preach from His Word, God tells us what we need to hear.
Lastly, what does Isaiah do upon hearing God’s Word and challenge? He responds. In verse 8b he declares,“Here am I. Send me!” In my opinion, this is one of the sweetest responses to God in the Bible. Isaiah encounters God, sees how he does not measure up to God’s standard, confesses before the Lord, is cleansed of his sins, hears God’s Word, and then he responds emphatically to God’s challenge. Oh that we would respond in the same way each Sunday! Begin to pray today that God will help you to follow this pattern in your daily worship as well as when you unite together with the body of Christ this coming Sunday!
Isaiah 6:1-13 (ESV):
In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. 2 Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3 And one called to another and said:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
the whole earth is full of his glory!”
4 And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. 5 And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!”
6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a burning coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7 And he touched my mouth and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.”
8 And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.” 9 And he said, “Go, and say to this people:
“‘Keep on hearing, but do not understand;
keep on seeing, but do not perceive.’
10 Make the heart of this people dull,
and their ears heavy,
and blind their eyes;
lest they see with their eyes,
and hear with their ears,
and understand with their hearts,
and turn and be healed.”
11 Then I said, “How long, O Lord?”
And he said:
“Until cities lie waste
and houses without people,
and the land is a desolate waste,
12 and the Lord removes people far away,
and the forsaken places are many in the midst of the land.
13 And though a tenth remain in it,
it will be burned again,
like a terebinth or an oak,
whose stump remains
when it is felled.”
The holy seed is its stump.