Wednesday, September 10, 2014


Today’s Bible readings are Isaiah 6:1-7:25, 2 Corinthians 11:16-33, Psalm 54:1-7, & Proverbs 23:1-3

Isaiah 6:1-8
It was in the year King Uzziah died that I saw the Lord. He was sitting on a lofty throne, and the train of his robe filled the Temple. Attending him were mighty seraphim, each having six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. They were calling out to each other,
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies!
    The whole earth is filled with his glory!”
Their voices shook the Temple to its foundations, and the entire building was filled with smoke.
Then I said, “It’s all over! I am doomed, for I am a sinful man. I have filthy lips, and I live among a people with filthy lips. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”
Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a burning coal he had taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. He touched my lips with it and said, “See, this coal has touched your lips. Now your guilt is removed, and your sins are forgiven.”
Then I heard the Lord asking, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?”
I said, “Here I am. Send me.”

Here is an amazing example of what happens in the presence of a holy God. Isaiah saw the majesty & holiness of God & it changed his life. He also immediately realized his own sinfulness. This is very interesting to me.

We are all such imperfect people. We tend to forget about these things most of the time. I know how easy it is to focus on the imperfections of others, while we neglect to ever notice the imperfections of our own.

It is easy to condemn those around us for the things that we dislike in them. Many times those things may be legitimate. They may sin in ways that we despise. Yet, the more our eyes are drawn to the imperfections they wrestle with, the further our eyes get from Jesus.

When I read this text I always notice the fact that Isaiah came into the presence of a holy God. In His presence He saw his own imperfections. I have often thought that is the reason that God wants us to come into His presence; so he can reveal to us our imperfections. There have been times when this made sense. Yet, maybe the reason that God wanted Isaiah to experience Him was so that Isaiah no longer had to live feeling condemned for his imperfections. Maybe what God really wanted to reveal to Isaiah was His ability to make us righteous.

The first thing that we see God doing once Isaiah started to focus on his imperfection was to cleanse him of the guilt that was associated to it. He forgave & cleansed. God doesn’t want anybody walking through life feeling inadequate & condemned. He doesn’t want you feeling this way & He doesn’t want us making others feel this way. The reason He wants us to experience Him is so we can be freed from those 2 crippling things. This frees us to live for His glory.

It is the law of sin & death that produces condemnation in us. Christ offers another way. It is the law of life in the Spirit. The more time we spend in God’s presence, the more we realize that He doesn’t condemn us.

This all leads to us being transformed. We immediately see Isaiah accepting God’s call AFTER he had this revelation. Knowing he was righteous empowered him to say yes to God. People will never say yes to God if they feel condemned inside. Nobody will ever embrace God’s plan for their life; in its fullness, until they see that they are right with Him.

The next time that you are tempted to focus on your imperfections, or the imperfections of another, take a break & spend some time in the presence of the Lord. Let Him affirm you. Let Him encourage you. Let Him speak the word that will cleanse & reveal His true heart for you. If God doesn’t condemn you then why condemn yourself?

Pastor Richard Schlotter

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