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Sunday School is a vital part of any ministry. In it, one is able to experience a deeper knowledge of God’s Word. We here at “Word For Life Says” want to help you help others. Below you will find resources to help you prepare for your upcoming lessons. May God bless you!
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Please Note: All lesson verses and titles are based on International Sunday School Lesson/Uniform Series ©2013 by the Lesson Committee, but all content/commentary written within is original to wordforlifesays.com unless properly quoted/cited. As always you are encouraged to do your own studies as well. Blessings!)
If truth be told, when was the last time God became our sole and complete focus? Do we just get through our times of prayer and devotions, or do we really get in tune to His majesty?
Isaiah, the prophet whom we are studying in today’s lesson, had to get focused on God real quick. When one is whisked away in a vision to the position of standing before the Almighty you know that play time is over. It’s time for sober seriousness in the presence of God. And if you didn’t know how to worship God before, I guarantee once you stand before He that is enthroned in the heavenlies, you will learn how to praise! Once you stand before the sinless, you will quickly begin to understand your own sinfulness.
Isaiah 6 takes us to a place that only a few have been privileged to view in visions. A place where we hope to reside one day. Looking at heaven through the eyes of Isaiah prepares us for the extreme holiness of God. It lets us know that we are a people of unclean lips also and we better be prepared to live in that blessed place; a place where holiness supersedes everything, where we can learn to cry out with the seraphims, “Holy, Holy, Holy!”
It is there, Isaiah receives his calling to be the man God would use in his day to prophesy to, instruct, and forewarn His people of what is and what is to come.
Isaiah 6:1 “In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.”
“I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne.” I have loved the vision of God sitting on a throne for some time now. When I pray, I imagine myself coming before our great King, bowing before His presence and humbly lifting my eyes to Him in supplication and petition. Because of our lack of a monarchy here in the States, we don’t really appreciate what it is to come before royalty in utter humility. But there, in his vision, Isaiah sees God on a throne where we would expect Him to be, reigning in all sovereignty and power as the ultimate King of all kings, and Lord of all lords.
The irony in Isaiah’s vision is when the earthly king passed off the scene; Isaiah was able to see the one who truly was in charge the whole time. Nothing is ever predicated on our earthly rulers or those who may be currently in power. Even if it doesn’t feel like it, God always has His hands at the helm of life and events.
A “throne” is a place of rulership, which in turn is a place of judgment. Israel had been long divided as a nation at this point in history. The ten kingdoms to the north were referred to as Israel while the two kingdoms to the south were Judah. God’s people were divided from each other but they were also divided from God. The people had drawn away from God through sin and rebellion (See Isaiah 1:2-4). God was now “sitting” in the seat of judgment. Proverbs 20:8 tells us, “A king that sitteth in the throne of judgment scattereth away all evil with his eyes,” (KJV).
“High and lifted up.” Where else would He be? God is exalted above all! Psalm 108:5 rejoices and says, “Be thou exalted, O God, above the heavens: and thy glory above all the earth,” (KJV). God is above! Not Beneath! There are many kingdoms established upon this earth but God supersedes all! He is “lifted up!” Every rule of man must bow to the ultimate King. “The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted,” (Psalm 47:9, KJV). God’s dominion outranks every other power imaginable!
“His train filled the temple.” Many of us are familiar with the idea of “train” on a bridal gown. When she walks into the room and goes forth down the aisle everyone focuses on the floor behind her gracious steps to see how long the train is. The long, flowing fabric embellished with love moves down behind her giving her a royal appearance. God didn’t need the appearance of royal, He is King. His “train,” the hem of His holy garment, marked His majestic stance above all else. It “filled the temple.” Can you imagine seeing God on His throne in heaven with heavenly hosts gathered all around and His flowing garment encompassing and enveloping everything with His glory? Amazing!
When God’s presence is in the place, His presence takes completely over the place! He occupies every crevice of that heavenly “temple.” There is not a place there where He is not.
Isaiah 6:2 “Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.”
“Above it stood the seraphims.” As I studied this I found out that this is the only place in the Bible where the word seraphims appear is here in the book of Isaiah. This is a unique opportunity that God has given to Isaiah. For those whom God draws near to Himself and are willing to be a vessel for His use, will experience unique opportunities that are not privileged to everyone else.
“Each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.” These seraphim dwelt with God in heaven yet felt a need to “cover” themselves. Here is tells us twice of them being “covered.” First, with the “face” and then with the “feet.” Why the need to feel covered? Perhaps, they know their unworthiness before this Judge who sits on the throne. Residing in heaven with Him, they don’t only know of His majesty, they know He is completely majestic. His holiness transcends all others, therefore, they “cover” themselves. How brash is mankind in thinking that he can approach God in any form or fashion? When the residences of heaven bow and cover, what more should we do when in His holy presence? Do you remember how Moses hid his face in last week’s lesson?
May all men reevaluate their own status before the Lord and give Him the same blessed honor of reverence the seraphims did. Not necessarily hiding the face (although a little humility can go a long way), but knowing who He is compared to who we are; knowing that we are not worthy except the blood of Christ covered us like those wings of the seraphims and made us worthy to stand before Him in that coming day.
Isaiah 6:3 “And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.”
“And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts.” This time of year is wonderful in that I can keep my windows open and experience nature. One of the things I get to experience is the birds calling and communicating to one another. They are sounding off their beautiful sonnets in hopes of attracting a mate or just relaying and revealing stuff in their own bird language.
The seraphim’s message that was being sounded off to one another, and for us to witness through Isaiah’s vision, is that the holiness of God is like no other. We cannot, with a human perspective, imagine how far and beyond us His holiness is. Here “one cried unto another . . . Holy, holy, holy.” Anytime Jesus wanted to teach a truth with great emphasis He would use the phrase “Verily, verily.” Saying it twice really brought attention to the point He was making. Here, twice was not good enough when professing the holiness of God. They announced it three times. That means we cannot comprehend it, we just better be ready to stand before it!
“The whole earth is full of his glory.” Everything on the earth gives God the full glory in the way they were created except for man. When the trees sway in the wind they glorify God because they are fulfilling their design. When the squirrel gathers nuts it does so at the command of God over its life. All of creation speaks of the glory of God. We may not hear it audibly but we can see it all around us.
“The earth is the LORD’s, and the fulness thereof; the world, and they that dwell therein,” (Psalm 24:1, KJV). Everything is under God’s ownership, therefore, “Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD. Praise ye the LORD,” (Psalm 150:6, KJV). Jesus, on His triumphal entry into Jerusalem, said, “I tell you that, if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out,” (Luke 19:40, KJV). Why? Because “the whole earth is full of his glory!” The magnificence of God can be seen throughout all His creation and if we don’t sing with the seraphim, “Holy, holy, holy,” then the rocks will cry out in our place!
Isaiah 6:4 “And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.”
“The posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried.” A voice so thunderous; a voice so powerful and so awe-strikingly moving to be heard that is caused the door posts in that temple to shake. And this is just speaking of the seraphim. No wonder when the children of Israel gathered around Mt. Sinai they were afraid to hear the voice of God speaking to them. “And they said unto Moses, Speak thou with us, and we will hear: but let not God speak with us, lest we die,” (Exodus 20:19, KJV). To be in God’s awesome, holy presence is nothing to be played with. When we enter into the place where true holiness resides we enter in with the humility that He and His tabernacle deserve.
“And the house was filled with smoke.” There is no mistaking when God is in the building or inhabiting the mountain. Back to the children of Israel at Mt. Sinai it says, “And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking: and when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off,” (Exodus 20:18, KJV). What is our response at the true presence of God in our lives? How do we act when we approach His glory? The children of Israel “stood afar off” and in our next verse Isaiah was moved with his own unworthiness. What of our own humility before Him who sits on the throne?
Isaiah 6:5 “Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips, for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.”
“Then said I.” What follows is a personal testimony of a man faced with his own sinfulness. This is his personal statement of what happened in his own heart when he stood before the presence of the Almighty. This was his response before the Creator of all the heaven and all the earth. Think about it, what will you say before Him who knows all and sees all, yet called you before His throne anyway?
“Woe is me!” Can you sense the agony of sin standing before the Sinless? It’s as if someone pulled back a curtain to reveal all the evils in human nature and the sight of his own role in humanity made Isaiah say, “Woe!” When was the last time we “woed” at our own incompleteness without Him? Even the best-behaved person on the face of this earth would have to “woe” before the Almighty. This is all about Him and our complete unworthiness to be before Him. But thank God for where Christ has placed us now:
“Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore COME BOLDLY UNTO THE THRONE OF GRACE, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need,” (Hebrews 4:14-16, KJV, All Capital Emphasis Mine).
“For I am undone.” This reminds me of the testimony of some who, in a life-changing moment, saw their life flash before their eyes. This is what Isaiah was experiencing. Every sin, every wrong, and every transgression comes to the forefront when there’s nothing to hide behind anymore. Standing before the Revealer of all, he declared, “I am undone.”
The Bible reminds us, “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God,” (Rom. 3:23, KJV). Standing in His glory one soon realizes just how “short” from being worthy they truly are.
“Because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips.” Jesus, in condemning the scribes and Pharisees said it best. “But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man,” (Mt. 15:18, KJV). Using the uncleanness of his own lips and those of people in general, he could see that his life was not ready to stand before the King of all kings and the Lord of all lords. The uncleanness of the lips is synonymous with the uncleanness of the heart. Continuing in Matthew Jesus further said, “For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: These are the things which defile a man . . .,” (15:19-20a, KJV). But Jesus started off His chastisement saying, “Out of the mouth come forth from the heart.” What is our conversation saying of our hearts? Do we really understand how “unclean” we are?
“For mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.” It only takes a moment to see the miraculous to change your life forever. Many people desire to see God or an angel on this side of glory as some sort of sign. They don’t know what they ask for. Every time I read of one of the instances in the Bible when man came face to face with just one of God’s angels and he fell down before him in fear, I know that would be my response also. How much more before the Almighty King? The majority of us will never experience the sight of Him until we get to heaven, “For we walk by faith, not by sight,” (2 Cor. 5:7, KJV). OH! But if we did, I’m sure it would have the same impact on us as it did on Isaiah “For mine eyes have seen the king, the LORD of hosts.”
Isaiah 6:6-7 “Then flew one of the seraphim unto me, having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar. And he laid it upon my mouth, and said, Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquities is taken away, and thy sin purged.”
Using the set of wings that was not for covering himself in humility, one of the “seraphim” “flew” into action. The seraphim performed the action of getting and placing the “live coal” on Isaiah’s lips but he was not responsible for the purging of the sin. We know that in the Bible altars were places of sacrifice. Upon the altars were sin offerings, burnt offerings, peace offerings, heave offerings, wave offerings and such. So we can only assume that the altar where the “live coal” was is symbolic for removing of sins also since this is what the seraphim used it for.
Our sins today can only be removed by Jesus Christ who became the ultimate sacrifice for our sins on the altar of Calvary’s cross. When we come to Him, repent, and believe and accept everything the Word declares of Him, and accept Him as our Savior, He will lead us in victory before the throne of His and our heavenly Father because He has cleansed us.
If there is a true confession. If there is true repentance. If there is true salvation, then that life will never be the same again. Having “iniquities . . . taken away” lightens the load of humanness and lets us focus more on the divine. “Old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new,” (2 Cor. 5:17, KJV). This new stance before God leads to a new outlook on life. His will becomes our will. His work becomes our work as we see in the next verse.
Isaiah 6:8 “Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.”
What a conclusion! After all that has transpired the Lord speaks up. Wings flew, voices thundered and sins were purged, but now, He speaks. Not directly to Isaiah but He speaks to be heard by Isaiah.
How many times has God spoken to us but His pleas have gone unheeded? “Well, I’ve never heard Him speak to me!” God usually doesn’t speak audibly as He did in the ancient days, but He still speaks. One of the easiest ways to find out what God has to say on a matter is to read His Word. Nothing in the Bible has changed since it was written and His Word is as reliable and infallible today as it has always been.
The question of the “Lord” was, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” “Whom” is there, that has prepared his heart and mind to follow the will of God and go, is the real question? One cannot go unless they have first prepared. I imagine that’s why we don’t hear the Lord speak until after the sins were purged. Sin does more than defile you before the Lord it also hinders any work that He wants to do in you and through you. Now that Isaiah is prepared the Lord wants to know will he go.
To be willing to “go” means to allow oneself to commissioned to service. When my son’s commanding officer tells him to “go” he must fully obey the orders given him. Here, the “Lord” was asking is there one who will allow Him [God] to commission his life into His service. Romans 12:1 teach us to, “Present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service,” (KJV). After witnessing everything he did in the throne room of heaven Isaiah had no problem responding with a resounding, “Here I am; send me.” He didn’t know what his life would look like after that but he was ready to “go.”
What about us? After reading of the glories of that wondrous, heavenly temple and hearing of all the sights and sounds that Isaiah witnessed are we ready to respond as Isaiah did? Is it not our “reasonable service” to want to be used by the Lord?
Isaiah answered the call of God on his life and he was never the same. Today, we are still talking about and teaching on the prophecies he spoke of and the life he lived because he said, “Here I am; send me.”
What can God do through any life that yields to His call? After witnessing the “Holy, holy, holy” how will we respond? May we tune into His Majesty and hear His call.
Standard Print PDF: Prophets: Isaiah Sunday School Lesson Summary Standard Print
Large Print PDF: Prophets: Isaiah Sunday School Lesson Summary Large Print
Below are activities to support this week’s lesson. Enjoy!
Memory Verse: Prophets: Isaiah Memory Verse
Isaiah’s Calling Craft: Isaiah’s Calling Craft Sheet
Simply use the above as a coloring sheet alone or color, cut out, and attach to construction paper as I have done to give your students an easy activity to remind them of this week’s lesson. Another idea, print it out on cardstock, cut out the megaphone, attach it to a craft stick, and you have another simple, easy, affordable idea on the go. Enjoy!
“Holy, Holy, Holy Glitter Sheet Activity”: Another activity that can be done is this “Holy Holy Holy” Glitter sheet. Use the sheet as is to color or do as I did. I colored and cut out the words and glued them on blue construction paper (sky). Then, using a white crayon you can make clouds. Finally, since it is a holy place where these words are being uttered, I used gold glitter to bring out the words “Holy, Holy, Holy!” Enjoy! PDF: Holy coloring sheet
Below are Activities/Links/Resources to support this week’s lesson. Enjoy!
“Sin Revealed” from Kidssundayschool.com (Great object lesson to go with being “undone” and “unclean lips” because it shows how our sin can’t hide before God).
“Sanctified Lips” from Calvarycurriculum.com
“Isaiah” Lesson and Activities from Missionarlington.org
“Seraphim” from Sundayschoollessons.com
“Isaiah Coloring Sheet” from Coloringpages7.com
“Megaphone Paper Cup Craft” from Meaningfulmama.com (This craft can be adjusted to the call of Isaiah in verse 8)
Bouncing off the idea of making megaphones to stand for the calling of Isaiah, here are some other links of simple, put together megaphone crafts your class will be sure to enjoy!
“The Gospel Megaphone” (Scroll down to this section to see simple megaphone craft. It’s similiar to the paper cup craft above with a little difference. Use a verse matching today’s lesson to attach. Enjoy!)
“Megaphone Template” (Simply use this to trace out your own templates for students to decorate with the theme of this lesson. Enjoy!)
Text Free Photo Credit: Pixabay