READ | SERMON NOTES
Summary l Encountering God leads to spiritual transformation, from confession to commitment in Christ.
Although King Uzziah brought peace and security to Judah, he transgressed against God’s law. He was inflicted with leprosy until he died. Isaiah 6 was set after Uzziah’s death, during the political transition and rebellious nation of God. Isaiah grieved the passing of the king and lamented on God’s judgement. Will God send another king and redeem His people? Isaiah then received a vision of God sitting on the throne. Isaiah transformed from a disposition of fear and unworthiness to become a willing servant of God.
Encountering the Glory of God
1. Attributing absolute worth
Worship is the act of attributing absolute worth. Isaiah saw the seraphim surrounding the throne and they affirmed the heavenly truth, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.” The seraphim’s’ song was an acknowledgement of the absolute worth of God in His holiness; emphasizing the word “Holy” – set apart and like no others. God’s worth exceeds any human description. He is the source and standard of goodness. God is unchanging and His holiness is of great spiritual significance. True worship begins when we stand in the presence of God and acknowledge His absolute worth.
2. Beholding the Glory of God
Worship is about beholding the glory of God. As Isaiah beheld God in worship, spiritual transformation took place. Richard Foster stated, “Worship changes the worshipper into the image of the One worshipped.” Isaiah repented as he beheld the glory of God, and he was restored. Beholding God’s glory, we become acutely aware of how far we have fallen short and how much we need God’s grace in our lives. Repentance is fundamental in our worship to God. The Holy Spirit within us assures us that we are children of God. We are saved by grace through faith; trusting in God whom we cannot see. The Holy Spirit rests our doubts, brings rest and peace to our souls.
3. Celebrating the transformation power of God
Worship leads to transformation. We praise and thank God for what He is doing in our lives. It is not just in worship that we celebrate, praise, and give thanks. We are being transformed to be God’s kingdom people with a mission to be sent out into the world to bless and to carry the gospel message. The purification of Isaiah’s lips for his impending ministry as God’s prophet and his transformation led him to respond to God. “Here am I. Send me!” Isaiah’s encounter led him to a place of transformation where he willingly offered himself to be God’s messenger to His people, even when it was difficult or uncertain.
Let us contemplate on Isaiah’s encounter and what it means
a. Cultivate Holiness in our lives
As we encounter God in His holiness, it must spur us to cultivate a lifestyle of worship that reflects His character. We are not perfect, yet the Holy Spirit continues to transform us within to do His will and to put Christ on display in our lives. We can do this through meditation or preparation to encounter God. We can actively seek His holy love for us.
b. Choose Humility
As a posture of our worship. Prepare our hearts to come before a holy God. We must choose to acknowledge our unworthiness before God and to embrace humility to experience spiritual transformation. Through humility and brokenness, God is delighted. We can experience God’s grace and love through repentance as we allow Him to restore us.
c. Commissioned to be witnesses
Worship cannot just end in praise; it ends with our responses to God. Jesus has commissioned us to be His witnesses to a world in need of His love and grace. We are His hands and feet – sharing the good news of salvation with those around us. As we commit our lives and service to God, we can become agents of transformation.
In worship, we celebrate who God is. We celebrate the change in us that comes when we encounter the living God through our worship. We see this transformational power at work in our lives through Jesus’ redemptive work on the cross. May we encounter God in His fullness as we consider our posture before Him as worshippers. Whenever we gather in prayer and praise, we seek to respond to be Christ’s witnesses to the world.
PONDER | REFLECTION QUESTIONS
Let’s Recall, Reflect, Consider and Commit.
- Recall the last time you encounter God’s presence in a powerful way.
- How did you feel during that experience, and what did you learn about God’s character through it?
- Reflect on this week’s sermon from Isaiah 6. Isaiah recognised His sinfulness in the presence of God’s holiness.
- What areas of your life do you need to repent of so that you can live a life of holiness and to honour God in worship?
- Consider the current state of your heart when it comes to surrendering to God in your posture of worship.
- Are there any areas of your life that you are holding back from Him?
- Pause and allow the Spirit to reveal to you these areas.
- Commit to the Lord your next steps as a disciple of Christ in responding to God’s glory as a worshipper. Isaiah responded to God’s call and said, “Here am I, send me.”
- What is one practical step you can take in having intentional moments of worship and surrender each day to serve others as an act of worship and love?