Today you should read: Isaiah 6:1-13
Isaiah’s Call To Ministry …
This is a popular one! Isaiah chapter 6 is one of the most popular chapters in the Bible. If you’ve been in church for any short amount of time, you’ve probably heard someone discuss it, and there is good reason.
This chapter is packed with prophetic thought about the messiah (Jesus) who “takes away the sins of the world,” as well as the commission that Christians are to be on mission after having been cleansed from their sins. This chapter is rich with truth.
Today, I want us to notice the progression of Isaiah’s call to do God’s work, as well as what the results were expected to be. I think we can learn to respond to God properly, regardless of the outcome of what He calls us to do.
6 Steps to Isaiah’s Call:
1. Proper Perspective: In verses 1-4, we see Isaiah get a proper perspective of the Lord. He sees the Lord so plainly that it is disconcerting. The Lord is high and lifted up and He is not merely Holy; but He is Holy, Holy, Holy. The Lord is so set-apart that Isaiah’s response to this is none other than full surrender and confession.
2. Proper Response: In verse 5, we see Isaiah respond with his first words of the entire book. Those words are a confession of his ungodliness. Not only is he unclean, but all of the people of the land are unclean. Isaiah doesn’t try to cover his unworthiness or try to stand up a little straighter before the Lord. Instead Isaiah confesses his sin.
3. Proper Cleansing: In verses 6-8, we see the Lord give grace to Isaiah. After confession and through atonement, God declares Isaiah’s unworthy worship to be instantly made right. His sin is covered.
4. Proper Qualification: Only after being cleansed is Isaiah approved to do the Lord’s work and tell the truth about Him.
5. Proper Submission: In verse 8 we see Isaiah submit his life to the Lord. When the Lord asks who will go for Him to do His work, Isaiah willingly volunteers his life for the Lord’s will.
6. Proper Expectations: In verses 9-13 we see some of the most interesting verses in this passage. Even though the Lord has called Isaiah to tell of Him throughout the land, this task will not be easy. Hearts will be hardened, people will not turn, eyes will not see the truth, ears will not hear the truth, and this message will do damage. But, even though success doesn’t look like we expect it to look, God will still be succeeding, through Isaiah, to bring people back to Himself.
For the rest of the book we see the ministry of the prophet Isaiah. This chapter recounts his calling to do it.
After seeing this progression, in some detail, I think we can learn that we are all called to ministry. God allows us to go through the same progression. We see Him and what He has done, He expects us to respond with confession in order to be cleansed and qualified through what Christ has done for us, and He wants us to submit to His plans for our lives. We are to expect persecution, and trials, and pain, but through it all, the Lord will be accomplishing His work, even if it doesn’t look like “success.”
So, my question to you today is: Are you properly responding to God’s work in your life? Are you properly submitting to what God is calling you to? What about when the results look different than you thought? God has called us all into ministry, wherever we are and in whatever we do, and He desires us to respond properly. Ask yourself, what would be the “proper” response to what God is doing in my life and heart?
Posted by: Sam Cirrincione