Isaiah: Beyond Religion. Part 3. True Worship Leads To Mission


“Worship turns out to be the dangerous act of waking up to God and to the purposes of God in the world, and then living lives that actually show it.”   -Mark Labberton

Soon I will be preaching a very familiar passage, Isaiah 6:1-13. You know the story. Isaiah comes face to face with a holy God and is completely undone. If it were not for God forgiving Isaiah of all of his sins Isaiah probably would have died from remaining an unclean man in the presence of a holy God.

The result of this encounter?

Isaiah literally begging God to let him go and warn people about their desperate need to repent.

And I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Then I said, “Here I am! Send me.” -Isaiah 6:8

The point? Encountering God, worshipping God, leads us to want to serve him.

The problem? Why is it that so much of our “worship” seems to leave us unchanged and unwilling to give our lives away for God’s glory?

The answer. Maybe we are not really worshipping God at all. Maybe we are singing, gathering, listening…but not really worshipping.

Is it possible to truly encounter God, behold his majestic holiness, and leave his presence unchanged?

Perhaps part of the problem is that we have misdiagnosed our greatest need. If we were honest, many of us would have to admit that we love knowledge. We want to learn something new. More info. Scripture is clear that learning and knowledge is a good thing, but it is not the best thing. What we most desperately need is to be still in God’s presence long enough for our hearts to be spiritually transformed. What changed Isaiah? Coming into the presence of a holy God.

There will be no mission if there is not first true worship. Mission will remain undesirable and unsustainable without ongoing worship of our holy, gracious God.

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