Tuesday 13 June 2023

 Isaiah 6

My message to-day, is from the Old Testament which reminds that it is an essential. Part of the Bible, to which Jesus often referred.

The story refers to an event which occurred two thousand eight hundred years ago, at a critical period in the history of the land of Judah.

      King Uzziah had died after a reign of 52 years, and the nation waited to    see who would take his place.  For most of his reign, he had ruled wisely, but towards the end had become proud,   and felt he could do what he liked, and his pride led to his downfall.   Pleasure and materialism, leading to immorality, so led to a spiritual and moral vacuum, and he contracted leprosy.  He saw evil as good and good as evil, which the Bible warns against. 

     If we look at Western society, we see evil everywhere.  In both Britain and America, newspapers are full of horrific deeds and cruelty.  The older generations here in Britain, will remember when we could allow our children to go to the local park without any concern, knowing they would be reasonably safe; when older folk did not fear being attacked in their own home; when it was safe to leave your front door open and windows at night; when girls and young women could walk the streets without fear of sexual assault.  I think much of this would resonate with American friends.

     We have too, a spiritual and moral crisis,  When you listen or read the newspapers, do you ever wonder if it is you or the world around you that is going mad.  Political correctness is taken to extremes. It is no longer permissible to refer to husband or wife, or even man or woman.  Emergency services personnel cannot go into a pond three feet deep to rescue a stranded person, unless had full life saving training and one man died as a result of such policy,  and so it goes on endlessly all to justify some bureaucrats having a job. 

     Added to all such happenings, we have the Churches deviating from God’s written Word, and His order of creation challenged.

     We have to remove the cross from crematoriums lest it offend a humanist, and not refer to BC and AD to avoid offending non Christians.  If you stand for biblical morality you are intolerant, and to claim Jesus as the only Saviour is discriminatory.  As Christians we should not allow ourselves to be turned away from biblical teaching. 

     When we accept and recognise God as the Bible portrays Him, mighty, majestic and sovereign, who rules the whole world, we will feel compelled to strive for the gospel to be made known widely.

Isaiah is led by God’s grace in his commission as a Prophet, after having  a vision.

     The book of Isaiah in the Bible, conveys the lasting impression of the vision of God in His infinite holiness. He heard the voice of God asking ‘who shall I send?’. Isaiah replied, ‘here I am Lord send me.’ (this is the basis for that lovely hymn, I the Lord of sea and sky)

     Isaiah said he saw the Lord, and recognising that no one has ever actually ‘seen’ visibly the Lord, he meant that God reveals Himself to us in a multiplicity of ways.  We are to look up to God, and realise His provision of forgiveness which He makes possible for us through the death of Jesus on the Cross.  Try to see this amazing God of grace, as contained in the words of one of the favourite hymns by John Newton’s ‘Amazing grace’. 

      In v 6-10, God decrees the Prophet’s ministry will have a hardening effect on his own generation. In the midst of a people who were more and more giving themselves over to things, which were not part fo God’s desire. And should not be compare with anything holy,  The effect on the prophet was overwhelming, taken together with his own turning from the Lord with his own sins. He could only see himself as a failure. Isaiah felt he had let down his holy Lord.

.       There was a surge of materialism, irresponsible behaviour, and a failing to honour the Lord.   Isaiah preached to the Jews, but they hardened their hearts and rejected God,  and so received God’s judgement.  In the midst of all the unrest and turmoil, Isaiah saw God was looking after His own.

      The message given is one of solemn judgement. It is not for the people to hear the implications of the message. They are to go blinder and their hearts made hard,  and the nation to be destroyed.

     There  is a sense of total devastation, but still there is a promise. As a stump of a tree grows, so shall  they flourish, and the people may gather again with the service ad dominion of the Almighty creator of Israel.

     Today holiness is mocked and replaced by happiness, for we are not to rebuke bad behaviour as it makes people feel guilty and hurts their feelings. Being holy means hating sin.

      There are many today who think they can live as debauched a life as they like, and when things go wrong they start crying why did God allow this, forgetting God is a righteous God.  People need to be reminded that God is not a remote being, having little or nothing to do with everyday affairs, He is involved in all our lives and we offend Him at our peril. 

Another hymn that needs to be considered is Immortal Invisible God only wise, a God that sees all, and is there when we call upon Him.


.  There was a surge of materialism, irresponsible behaviour, and a failing to honour the Lord

 Isaiah preached to the Jews, but they hardened their hearts and rejected God and so received God’s judgement. 

In the midst of all the unrest and turmoil, Isaiah saw God was loking after His own.

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