MEASURING UP TO GOD’S HOLINESS
God’s Message Coming Down Through The Ages
By Glenda Ward
Some people carry their sins around with them. But those sins become a burden that wears people down. Before you find yourself worn out and useless, turn to the One who promises to take away your burden of sin and replace it with Spiritual Rest that is a joy to fulfill (see Matthew 11:28-30). When people do not carefully observe the distinction between evil from good, destruction soon follows. When you make excuses for ungodly actions, you break down the distinction between right and wrong. If God’s Word, in Scripture, is not taken as your standard, soon all moral choices appear vague and disillusioned, and contradiction of beliefs will soon leave you feeling lost and disconnected. Without God, we are left without hope and headed for a breakdown and much suffering. It is sad today to see so many people searching for meaning in life while tossing aside God’s Word. In Isaiah 5:24-25: “…because they have cast away the law of the Lord of hosts, and despised the Word of the Holy One of Israel. Therefore is the anger of the Lord kindled against His people, and He hath stretched forth His hand against them, and hath smitten them: and the hills did tremble, and their carcasses were torn in the midst of the streets. For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still.” Avoid the error of destruction by making not only just reading the Bible a part of your day, but also understanding and obeying it, making this a high priority in your life.
Israel’s people suffered because they disregarded God’s Law. People were searching for meaning in life while tossing aside God’s Word. Isaiah 5:26-30 describes what God said He would do if the people disobeyed Him, (Deuteronomy 28). The country of Assyria began to torment Israel during the reign of King Ahaz (735-715 B.C.). Note: Remember the years count down to 0 before Christ Was Born. This powerful aggressor destroyed the Northern Kingdom of Israel in 722 B.C. and scattered the people throughout its own empire. Sin has consequences and this judgment was not immediate. Eventually, Israel was punished. It is during this time of anxiety and political unrest that God calls the prophet Isaiah to deliver His message of hope to the few remaining groups of believers. In God’s Word when He calls something evil, it is evil. When He labels a thing bitter, no multitude of religious authorities can make it sweet through their solemn declarations. Isn’t this where our country is today? God is our only and absolute authority!
We have just come through the most glorious season imaginable, celebrating the Birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. It is my prayer that during the past month of December Christmas Day was observed and served as a reminder of the true reason for the joyous season of Christmas.
God’s Message Coming Down Through the Ages
In the Old Testament Isaiah 6:1-4; Isaiah had a lofty vision which was his call to be God’s messenger to His people. It was important for Isaiah to see God in all His Holiness. Holiness means morally perfect, pure, and set apart from all sin. It was in this Scripture that Isaiah saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and His train filled the temple as a symbol of glory and splendor, triumph, and victory. This was the greatest recognition for a King that He was victorious and was signified. It was in Old Testament times; that the length of a king’s robe would be a sign or indication of his greatness. The longer the robe, the more victories he had won, and the more kings he had defeated. Isaiah’s statement conveys the magnitude of God’s glory compared to any earthly king. The glorious robe that fills the temple signifies:
1-His Absolute Authority. There is no room for anyone else in this high-exalted place. God is all in all.
2-His Divine Perfections. There is No one else who is all-powerful, all-knowing, unhindered by limitations of time and space, and perfectly just, merciful, and righteous in all He does.
3-His Incomparable Splendor. The revelators Isaiah, Daniel, and John, gave us glimpses of their heavenly visions. They saw a high exalted throne encircled by an extremely delicate and light rainbow seemingly too perfect for this world. Isaiah saw Seraphims (angelic beings belonging to the highest order serving as a throne guardian of God, having two or three pairs of wings), standing above the throne and one cried unto another, saying Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord of hosts and the whole earth was full of His glory. And they saw lamps blazing, lightning flashing, thunder rumbling, ground shaking, and angels and saints worshiping.
Isaiah 6:2 is the only place in the Bible where Seraphims are mentioned. They functioned as God’s agents in commissioning Isaiah. Isaiah could understand them when they spoke to him and when they praised God because they hovered around God’s throne. Isaiah also sees God’s Son clothed in a royal robe. The King of Kings and Lord of Lords, sitting upon a throne seven hundred years before the birth of Jesus Christ. In Isaiah 6:5-13 Isaiah realized he was common and unclean before God, with no hope of measuring up to God’s standard of Holiness. Read this account of the prophet Isaiah and how he was forgiven and cleansed by God, and he in response submitted himself entirely to God’s service …for he said “Here am I; send me.” Isaiah brought a message of hope to the house of David. “Therefore, the Lord Himself shall give you a sign. Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a Son, and shall call His name Immanuel;” (Isaiah 7:14). Jesus’s name Immanuel means, “God with us”. And so, some two thousand years ago the prophecies of the Old Testament times came to pass.
The Virgin Birth is important to our Christian faith. Jesus was born without the sin that entered the world through Adam. He was born Holy, just as Adam was created sinless. In contrast to Adam, who disobeyed God, Jesus obeyed God and was able to face sin’s consequences in our place which makes us acceptable to God (Romans 5:14-19). Jesus Christ, God’s Son had to be free from the sinful nature passed on to all other human beings by Adam. God’s Word came as a baby born of a virgin. He was a human being; but as the Son of God, Jesus was born without any trace of human sin. Jesus is both fully human and fully divine. God sees into eternity the plight and disease of a man struggling in sin, having no hope and doomed to despair and darkness. God asks who will go for me and make a way for sinful men to be saved. And Jesus the Son says, “I will go send me”. The Father continues, Son you will have to take on human flesh and die a sacrificial death, you will experience the pain and suffering of the flesh, and I will forsake you in your darkest hour. You will pay a sin debt and satisfy my wrath against the sin of the people. Royalty, the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords comes to earth as a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger. God removes the Royal Robe in exchange for grave clothes. God spoke His Word in sending Jesus, the Messiah into the world who brings about life eternal!
God’s Holiness, God’s living Word. THANK YOU JESUS!
Glenda Ward is a member of Grand View Baptist Church in McDowell County and is a Christian writer/author of “Something to Think About” – weekly Christian Articles. She finds purpose and joy in writing Church Programs & Bulletins, VBS Material, Christmas and Easter Programs, Memorials, and now expanding to include weekly articles to other churches, as well as writings to include Christian-based articles on Relationships in Marriage; all material based on the KJV of the Bible. From personal experience, I hope to set an example of how to serve a risen Savior and live by the Holy Spirit with joy. My goal is to help people partake of the better option in life to experience the transforming power that is available in Christ Jesus today. You can read more, good, Christian news from Glenda HERE.