1 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. 2 Above him were seraphim, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. 3 And they were calling to one another:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.”
4 At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke. 5 “Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.” 6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. 7 With it he touched my mouth and said, “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.” 8 Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
9 He said, “Go and tell this people:
“‘Be ever hearing, but never
be ever seeing, but never perceiving.’
10 Make the heart of this people calloused;
make their ears dull
and close their eyes.
Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
hear with their ears,
understand with their hearts,
and turn and be healed.”
11 Then I said, “For how long, Lord?”
And he answered:
“Until the cities lie ruined
and without inhabitant,
until the houses are left deserted
and the fields ruined and ravaged,
12 until the Lord has sent everyone far away
and the land is utterly forsaken.
13 And though a tenth remains in the land,
it will again be laid waste.
But as the terebinth and oak
leave stumps when they are cut down,
so the holy seed will be the stump in the land.”
By Matt Risher:
Isaiah 6 beings with a historical marker; “In the year King Uzziah died.” From earlier text 2 Chronicles 26 we see the reign of King Uzziah. He was appointed kingship at a young age and was a restorer of Judah. He did right in the eyes of The Lord and that led to many military victories against Philistines, Meunites and Arabs. He became very powerful and his fame spread throughout the area; and the land of Judah had a peace under the leadership of Uzziah. So why is his death significant? With the loss of this powerful and feared leader the land of Judah was again vulnerable. A sense of apprehension was there as in who would rule next? And how will their rule affect the country?
This is a perfect time for the King of Glory to appear to His prophet. You see, the whole time since the Israelites left Egypt with Moses; God was King over Israel and Judah even if they turned from him to man or other idols, He watched and dictated the fate of the people. He always was in control and in this time of fear of what will happen, He appears!
Isaiah goes on to say that he “saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple.” (verse 1) He sees these seraphim (translates directly to “burning ones”) with six wings, two used in flying crying out “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” (verse 3) They cannot even handle the glory flowing from the throne of the Lord because they use four wings to cover their body completely. They were shouting back and forth almost in a battle to declare how marvelous the glory and power of God is each one amplifying the holiness of the Lord to each other. And at the sound of just there praise to the Lord the “doorpost and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.” (verse 4)
There is a scene of intense power, where even pure creatures tremble in the presence of the Holy one; and the whole time Isaiah is taking it in, seeing first hand the Glory of God Almighty. His response to it all is in verse 5. “’Woe to me!’ I cried. ‘For I am ruined!’”
See Isaiah is the Prophet of the Lord; He is amongst the people a Holy man; One with good standing before the Lord who is to speak to the people on behalf of the Lord. But Isaiah knows the Lord that is why he cries out in fear and trembling. He knows that no man can see the glory of the Lord and live (Exodus 33:20). Look what he says; keep in mind that Isaiah is a SPEAKER for the Lord. “For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.” (verse 5) There are a few points to grab here
- Isaiah acknowledges that the greatest part about him, the fact that even the aspect of his life that exemplifies holiness the most is nothing compared to the glory and the holiness of the Lord
- He notes that the people that are amongst him are no different than him. Why is this important? Many believers today believe their “glory” or “holiness” is far superior to the people around them. But lets look at Isaiah, a significant prophet of the Lord, one who the Lord uses continually with the honor of declaring the coming king the Son of God. He knows his standing before the Lord is just as sinful and unjust as everyone else.
- King Uzziah has died, yet Isaiah knows the true King, the Lord Almighty. He declares God the King of Israel and acknowledges his power.
Woe is me… this is not a quote to take for granted as we often do today. Crying out “woe to me” as Isaiah did shows the curse he is under, the doom, destruction and wrath that is and rightfully should come to him. As you notice he did not ask for help, did not cry to be saved; but look what happens next.
Verses 6-7 describe a scene where one of the seraphim comes to Isaiah, who is in great distress and who is deserved of death, with a live coal in hand which he had taken from the alter and he Touched (notice he touched) the mouth of Isaiah. “See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.”
This is my opinion but we can see how a healing touch, like that of Jesus Christ can completely change a situation of disaster to one of purity before the Lord. Grace is getting what you do not deserve and the touch of Jesus is grace.
Now renewed before the Lord, Isaiah hears a call from the Lord. Verse 8, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I (Isaiah) said, ‘Here am I. Send me!’” Let that be your prayer in your life… Here am I. Send me! So much to take from here
- The Lord calls for someone to send, He doesn’t say what he is sending them to do or what will happen, yet in the unknown Isaiah is more than willing to do what ever it is the Lord asks of him. What does this tell?
a) That he (Isaiah) is a loyal servant of the Lord
b) Isaiah trust that the Lord will cause no harm on him
c) Isaiah knows Gods plan will draw him closer to the Lord
- Who will go for US??? Who is the us the Lord is talking about? This can be an account of the trinity, three in one the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit
- Here am I. Send me! One minute Isaiah is cursed and now he is on the Lords mission. Guess what? So are you and so am I. We were doomed and under a curse before Jesus, but now after his healing touch of restoration we are on the mission of the Lord. Every minute of every day.
Then follows the conversation of the Lord with Isaiah. He is sent on a mission to declare the message of the Lord to the people. The message is one of disaster and ruin. A whole other commentary can be made on this conversation but for now we will continue.
The beauty of this passage evolves into another level in John 12: 37-41.
37 Even after Jesus had performed so many signs in their presence, they still would not believe in him. 38 This was to fulfill the word of Isaiah the prophet:
“Lord, who has believed our message
and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?”
39 For this reason they could not believe, because, as Isaiah says elsewhere:
40 “He has blinded their eyes
and hardened their hearts,
so they can neither see with their eyes,
nor understand with their hearts,
nor turn—and I would heal them.”
41 Isaiah said this because he saw Jesus’ glory and spoke about him.
The Lord Almighty and the glory of whom he saw was that of Jesus Christ, high and exalted on his throne. This same Jesus took off this glory to come to the earth as an atoning sacrifice, the coal amongst the lips of the unclean, and clothed himself in our sin. “He who had no sin became sin for us” (2 Corinthians 5:21) exchanging an immeasurable glory and becoming a payment for the sin of the world. A gift that we do not deserve, but Love, oh the love the Father has for us.
This is a story of Grace. I hope you can take the points I have made and expound on them. Grace leads to a call, a call leads to a desire, and the desire leads to the movement. Speak the word of the Lord wherever you shall go, whether it is of prosperity or of ruin. The word of the Lord is the word of the Lord a double-edged sword that can separate soul and spirit. (Hebrews 4:12)