Then I said, “Woe is me, I am doomed! For I am a man of unclean lips, living among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!” Isaiah 6:5 NABRE
This chapter of Isaiah opens with an account of how the Lord called Isaiah to be a prophet, sending him to the people to explain to them what is going on and how they should act. It opens with God manifesting Himself in the manner of a great king, surrounded by an angelic court, who extol the holiness of the Lord. He is clearly Lord of all. In this vision God is called holy three times, the highest form of holiness available in the Hebrew language (i.e. the third holy escalates as in English’s good, better, best which is the third and highest form of being good.) God stands apart and above everything, far above all other beings. God has none of the imperfections and limitations of created beings. A vision of God usually invokes fear in the seer, Isaiah is an example who cries out “Woe is me.” Isaiah recognizes in God’s perfection his own imperfection. All of us can see our imperfections, they become obvious, when comparing ourselves to God who is perfect. In the presence of the best we are able to recognize we are far from the best. Look at an example of driving a car. We think our windshield is clean and it is confirmed when driving away from the sun, but if we turn toward the sun we can see marks and unclean spots on the windshield magnified by the sun’s brightness. Isaiah recognizes this and says he has unclean lips, he walks among unclean people and having seen the Lord, the King, he knows how far he is from goodness, let alone perfection.
Yet Isaiah is cleaned and consoled by God, as God does for anyone ready to admit their own insignificance and unworthiness.
How do you compare to God? Do you admit unworthiness?Isaiah is cleaned and consoled by God, as God does for anyone ready to admit their own insignificance and unworthiness. Click To Tweet
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