You’ve never met someone directly who had been to the heavenly throne room, standing before the Lord. Isaiah did all that, as you can read in Isaiah 6. Isaiah 6 is a microcosm for the entire, wonderful book of Isaiah, as to the reaction God desires to have from everyone. It is a saving reaction. It is expected by God. You can read it yourself and experience it yourself through the Word of God. That’s what God wants you to do with that chapter. Standing in the heavenly presence of God should be a life-changing experience. Nothing can top it. When Isaiah saw it, it transformed him. Maybe you’re thinking, if God would do that for me, then I would be changed too. You’re not going to have the same experience as Isaiah except through reading Isaiah, and you are supposed to react like Isaiah did, as if it was you who did experience it. I’m saying you experience it through scripture. You’ve been there if you read it and then apply it to your life. The essence of Isaiah’s reaction was humility and surrender. He said, “Here am I Lord, send me.” It reminds me of Paul seeing Jesus on the road to Damascus – similar reaction – “Lord, what wilt thou have me to do.” This is a believing response to the Lord, giving in to Him as God and as Lord. You know He’ll save you, but you’ve got to give Him your life. Is that true of you?
Living For What’s Important
You’ll often hear me talk about how many things have to be going right at any given moment for any one of us to live physically. God is taking care of all of those things outside of our conscious credit to Him. He’s doing it anyway, despite not receiving the non-stop thanks and praise that He deserves. However, it is not going to last. We live temporal lives, but the earth itself is also disposable. We won’t be here very long, but the earth is on the clock too. God’s Word tells us what this time we have is all about. We know why we’re here. Sure, we’re supposed to be good stewards of what we have and do the best we can with what God has given to us, but the things of this life – the house, what we eat, what we wear, etc. – none of these things are going to last. God wants us to invest our lives in spiritual things, prioritize spiritual things. The church is all about that, about following the Lord in what He wants us to do. The little time that we spend here is all about the kingdom of God, which moves on into eternity. Almost everyone reading this in our church probably says that he knows that. Are you living like it? Is the truth of God what is vitally important for and to you? It is what is most important, but do you treat it as such? This is living by faith, trusting God and what He said. The ones who do that are believers and they move on into eternity with the Lord.
The terminology “law enforcement” brings many different thoughts this week; however, law enforcement assumes “law.” “Law” assumes authority and the comprehension of ordinary language. It isn’t a law if there is not controlling authority, which implies some type of consequence for violation. Laws are based upon ordinary language, yet we live in an age of linguistic relativity. Relativity starts with the denial of supernatural—naturalism—also called modernism, which didn’t fulfill its adherents, so it spun into postmodernism, where everyone can have his own truth, truth as a matter only of personal taste. This has paralleled with progressivism, which says that through naturalistic means mankind keeps progressing with the goal of reaching a utopian state. A strict construction of law takes a certain view of language where words must mean what they mean. God gave us language and His will is revealed to us in words. Naturalism by nature rebels against literal meaning with hope for a utopian society, which is to believe a lie. Only God’s Word is truth. The attack on truth requires an attack on meaning, so that laws become meaningless. Law begins with God because He is the highest authority. The attack on meaning is an attack on Him, on His power and goodness, by people who won’t submit to Him, because they don’t trust Him.
In many ways, one church service here at Bethel, the meeting of the church, is a microcosm of your entire life. What is your whole life about? It is about worshiping God, which is acknowledging God and giving Him what He wants. We are created for His pleasure and in this age, that is through the church. However, everything that occurs in the assembling of ourselves together here, although actually occurring and important in itself, is a model for what you are to do outside of the church. The meeting of our church is regulated by scripture. We pray, we read the Bible, we sing praise, we fellowship, we give, we preach, we listen to preaching, and we respond with submission to the Word of God. During the week, you take that model and live it out in your home, your work, and everywhere else. As that relates to hearing preaching and then passing along the Word of God that has passed through the church, we preach the gospel to every creature. That occurs in a systematic way. I believe every man should be involved in systematic evangelism, but also the spontaneous evangelism, where we live out the gospel with our life and lips. The latter very often doesn’t occur, because of the missing of the former. It’s not a more difficult commitment to go out with the men of our church to preach the gospel. What you do everywhere corresponds to that.