Isaiah 6

Isaiah 6  •  3 min. read  •  grade level: 7
Having been used to pronounce this six-fold woe, Isaiah was given a vision of the glory of Jehovah on His throne, attended by the angelic seraphim. Of their six wings only two were used for flight. First came the covering of the face in the presence of inscrutable glory; then the covering of their own way from their eyes; lastly their activity in the service of their God; a suitable lesson for ourselves. A spirit of worship and self-forgetfulness precedes service. The very door of the temple was moved at the Divine presence and this was followed by a spiritual movement in Isaiah. It wrought deep conviction of sin and uncleanness, so that having just pronounced in the name of the Lord six woes upon others, he now called for a woe upon himself.
Here we see exemplified the statement, “Verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity” (Psa. 39:55Behold, thou hast made my days as an handbreadth; and mine age is as nothing before thee: verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity. Selah. (Psalm 39:5)). This happened to Isaiah in the year that King Uzziah died, who was one of the better kings, but ended his days a leper because he dared to push his way into the temple of God. Here Isaiah found himself before God in His temple, and he instinctively used the language of a leper (see Lev. 13:4545And the leper in whom the plague is, his clothes shall be rent, and his head bare, and he shall put a covering upon his upper lip, and shall cry, Unclean, unclean. (Leviticus 13:45)), realizing that sin is leprosy of a spiritual sort. No sooner had his confession been made than the way of cleansing was revealed. Live coal that had been in contact with the sacrifice was applied to his lips and the sin and uncleanness removed. Only sacrifice can cleanse sin; a foreshadowing of the death of Christ.
Then came the challenge as to service, and Isaiah’s response; and as a result he was specially sent as the messenger to Israel. As often pointed out, the unvarying order is: — first, conviction; second, cleansing; third, commission in the service of God. Isaiah said, “Here am I; send me.” When God was about to commission Moses, He had the response, in effect, “Here am I; send somebody else”, as we see in Exodus 4:1313And he said, O my Lord, send, I pray thee, by the hand of him whom thou wilt send. (Exodus 4:13); though He overruled it and Moses was sent. Let us all especially the young Christian give Isaiah’s response and not that of Moses, lest the Lord pass us by, to our loss at the judgment seat of Christ.
It is instructive to note New Testament references to this scene. In John 12:4141These things said Esaias, when he saw his glory, and spake of him. (John 12:41), the blind rejection of Jesus is the theme, and we discover that Isaiah “saw His glory, and spake of Him.” Then in Acts 28:2525And when they agreed not among themselves, they departed, after that Paul had spoken one word, Well spake the Holy Ghost by Esaias the prophet unto our fathers, (Acts 28:25), Paul refers to our chapter and says, “Well spake the Holy Ghost...”. So here is one of those allusions to the Trinity which are embedded in the Old Testament. In verse 3 we have “Holy”, repeated, not twice nor four times, but three; and Jehovah of hosts is before us. In verse 5, “the King, the Lord of hosts”, whom we find to be the Lord Jesus. In verse 8, “the voice of the Lord,” which is claimed as the voice of the Holy Ghost. God is One and yet Three: Three and yet One. Hence, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for US?”
Verses 9-15 give us the message that Isaiah was commissioned to give. It was indeed of great solemnity. Things had reached such a state that hardening and blindness was to fall on the people, so that conversion and healing would not be theirs, and they would be driven out of their land. The only gleam of hope as to themselves would be found in the fact that God would have His tenth in a holy seed: in other words, He would preserve for Himself a godly remnant. The position was the same among the Jews in Paul’s day, as Romans 11 shows, and it is exactly the same today. The national blindness still persists and there is still a believing remnant, but now incorporated in the church.
The copyright for this material is assigned to Scripture Truth Publications. Used by permission.