Yesterday, while listening to my playlist, Caedmon’s Call came on…and it was their song “Only Hope”. This song NEVER ceases to get to me.
Take a peek at the lyrics:
Depth of mercy can there be
Mercy still reserved for me
Can my God, your wrath forbear
Me the chief of sinners, spare
It’s my only hope
You’re my only hope
It’s my only hope of Heaven
At the cross forgiven
I have long withstood your grace
Long provoked you to your face
Would not harken to your calls
Grieved you by a thousand falls
There for me the Savior stands
Shows his wounds and spreads His hands
Face to face before the Son
And like Isaiah I’m undone
Depth of mercy, vast and free
So much deeper than the sea
God of love, you heard my cry
Now into your open arms I fly
There is just so much that touches me in this song. I remember a time when I was a ‘baby Christian’ that I thought I would “High-Five Jesus” when I go to meet him. UMMM – Really? Now, I look at Isaiah’s reaction when he is brought to the throne-room of God. His reaction was to be completely undone.
The setting for the story is this:
Isaiah 6:1-4 NKJV
6 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lifted up, and the train of His robe filled the temple. 2 Above it stood seraphim; each one had six wings: with two he covered his face, with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. 3 And one cried to another and said:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
The whole earth is full of His glory!”
4 And the posts of the door were shaken by the voice of him who cried out, and the house was filled with smoke.
WOW…what a sight! When he saw this…he didn’t run up to God and say…High Five…thanks for saving us sinners. His reaction was this: Isaiah 6:5
5 So I said:
“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 my eyes have seen the King,
The Lord of hosts.”
Then it always strikes me, that God could have said ‘Yes, you are, now leave my presence’, but He didn’t. He made a way for Isaiah to be clean before Him. Yet another display of the mercy of God. Isaiah 6:6-7
6 Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a live coal which he had taken with the tongs from the altar. 7 And he touched my mouth with it, and said:
“Behold, this has touched your lips;
Your iniquity is taken away,
And your sin purged.”
The vision goes on and is amazing if you want to read the entire chapter of Isaiah 6, you can do so HERE.
When I first read this chapter, I thought, how odd is it that Isaiah is worried about his lips. He could have said, my heart is sinful, I am a man of unclean heart, but he didn’t. The seraphim could have touched his heart with the hot coal to purge it, but the seraphim did not.
Then I remember something that we learned in James 3 that it it out of the heart that the mouth speaks.
Here is the text:
8 But no man can tame the tongue. It is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 9 With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. 10 Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so. 11 Does a spring send forth fresh water and bitter from the same opening? 12 Can a fig tree, my brethren, bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Thus no spring yields both salt water and fresh.
So, in conclusion, there is only One Hope. Jesus. He can alone purge the heart, and that is our only hope.