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From the series: Prophets PREVIOUS PAGE

11. Isaiah says, “Send Me!” (Isaiah 6)

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PPT TITLE

Main Point: We should listen to God’s call to go and tell His message that Jesus saves.

Key Verse:

Then I heard the voice of the Lord. He said, “Who will I send? Who will go for us?” I said, “Here I am. Send me!” - Isaiah 6:8

Props: Several pieces of paper in various shades of cream, tan, off-white, some with smudges; a very bright light source such as a lamp with the shade removed or a very bright flashlight

Background/Review

Say: We have talked about how God’s people, the Israelites, demanded to have a king like all the other countries around them. God warned them that this was a very bad idea. He was their Ruler. He was perfect, and no human ruler could be better than Him! But the people wouldn’t listen, so God gave them what they asked for. First there was Saul, then David, then David’s son Solomon. Under Solomon, the people turned from God and worshipped false gods. After Solomon died, God allowed the nation of Israel to be divided into two kingdoms. Many kings came after Solomon. A few of them were good, but most of them were not. Some were terrible! Ask: Who can remember one of the terrible kings we have learned about? Ahab and his son Joram.

Say: About one hundred years after the time of King Ahab, came a king named Uzziah (yoo-ZAI-uh). He was a really good King for most of his reign. He ruled over the southern kingdom, called Judah. Uzziah was only 16 years old when he became King! During the reign of the kings, God sent prophets - messengers who spoke on God’s behalf. We have talked about Elijah and Elisha. Today we will talk about another prophet named Isaiah. God used Isaiah to proclaim His message for 50 years! When we hear Isaiah’s words to the Israelite people, let’s listen closely to hear how his words apply to us today.

Meet Isaiah (Isaiah 1 - 5)

Say: It appears that Isaiah came from a wealthy family. Historians believe that his father was a friend of King Uzziah’s father. Isaiah lived in Jerusalem, which was in Judah (the southern half of the kingdom).

God began speaking through Isaiah during the reign of King Uzziah. This King started out very well. He was faithful to the Lord, and the Lord helped him. He did many great things for his people, and became famous far and wide (2 Chronicles 26:15). Even with a godly king, the people were not faithful to God (2 Chronicles 27:2). The prophet Isaiah spoke boldly against the wicked ways of God’s people. He said the people rebelled against the Lord. They gave offerings that were meaningless because they didn’t even care when they sinned. They lied and murdered. Their land was full of idols; they worshipped things they made with their own hands. Isaiah warned that punishment was coming for the people’s wicked deeds.

Then, when King Uzziah became powerful, like many kings, he became proud and he sinned greatly against the Lord. Uzziah sinned against the Lord inside of God’s holy Temple (2 Chronicles 26:16-21). Immediately, God gave Uzziah the skin disease, leprosy. Uzziah had to give up the kingdom and live alone. His son had to take over. Uzziah was no longer allowed in the Temple. He suffered with leprosy until he died.

Isaiah’s Vision (Isaiah 6:1-8)

Say: In time, King Uzziah died. Ever since Isaiah had been alive, Uzziah was the great King that he admired and served. It must have been difficult for Isaiah, first to see his King sin against the Lord, then to see him removed from the throne, and then pass away. In this difficult time, God gave Isaiah a vision. It was not a dream. It was a VISION. God allowed Isaiah to see something that truly exists, but is usually hidden from people. God allowed Isaiah to see into the very throne room of heaven.

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord. He was seated on His throne. His long robe filled the temple. He was highly honored.

Above Him were seraphs. Each of them had six wings. With two wings they covered their faces. With two wings they covered their feet. And with two wings they were flying. They were calling out to one another. They were saying, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord who rules over all. The whole earth is full of his glory.”

The sound of their voices caused the stone doorframe to shake. The temple was filled with smoke. - Isaiah 6:1-4

Let’s look closely at the things Isaiah saw. First of all, he saw that God was alive. King Uzziah was dead, but God was alive! God is the everlasting God! He has always been alive, and He always will be alive (Psalm 90:2). The Israelites had begged for an earthly king, but every human king will die at some time. God will always be alive!

Next, Isaiah saw that God was ON HIS THRONE. Though King Uzziah had lost his place on the earthly throne, God was in His rightful place - seated on the throne of heaven. We often see T-shirts that say “Girls rule” or Boys rule.” This truth is: God rules! He is in control of everything. Nothing happens that is not allowed by Him. His plans stand forever and no one can stop them (Psalm 33:11).

And Isaiah saw God’s robe filling the temple. The best comparison we have to this is when a bride wears a beautiful gown with a long train - that is the fabric at the back of the dress. Queens and princesses often wear dresses with long trains. Several years ago, Princess Diana of Whales wore a wedding dress with a train that was 25 feet long. Through history, a long flowing train was a symbol of importance. When Isaiah saw that God’s robe filled the temple, this was a symbol of God’s importance and His splendor.

In the vision, God was highly praised and honored. He was high and lifted up. This is because God is higher than anything else. There is nothing above God. He is FAR greater than anyone else. He answers to no one! He deserves all praise, and in heaven He gets it!

Then Isaiah tells of the seraph, or seraphim, that he saw flying in the temple. These are some type of angel. They are not mentioned anywhere else in the Bible. These were not sweet, chubby babies with wings as some paintings may show. The very sound of their voices shook the doorframes! Each seraph had six wings. With two wings, they covered their faces. Even though they live in heaven, they hid their face from the holy God. These beings were much wiser than the men and women on the earth who lived their lives sinning against God. They knew that God is to be highly respected.

And what did Isaiah hear? He heard the seraphs calling out, “Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord!” Holy means, completely pure, 100% perfect, and set apart. God is holy. He is unlike anything else. He is in His own category. Think about this for a minute. Everything in the world can be put in a category. Ask: If I give you this list: poodle, Labrador, and beagle, what category am I talking about? Dogs. And if I say: snake, lizard, and crocodile, what category am I talking about? Reptiles. But if I wanted to put God in a category, what else or who else would be with Him? Nothing! Say: God is in His own category. Nothing else is holy and perfect like He is. The seraphs repeated this word three times because it is so important. Holy is the best word we have to describe God.

Then these unusual angels said, “The whole earth is full of His glory.” Glory is God’s magnificence or greatness. Psalm 91:1 says the heavens declare His glory. Romans 1:20 tells us that when we look at God’s incredible creation, we can learn more about what God is really like. When we see the earth, the stars, the sun, the sunsets, the tiniest seashell, a newborn baby, and each other - we can see how powerful and brilliant and creative and caring God is. Literally, the WHOLE earth is full of His glory. The whole earth sings out how magnificent God is.

Application: This was an amazing vision! Isaiah saw that God was alive, in control, most important, praised, respected, holy, and His glory is everywhere. Sometimes I wish this vision were made into a movie so I could see everything that Isaiah saw! But the Bible is very clear that those who place their trust in Jesus will live in heaven one day (John 14:2-3, Philippians 3:20). One day, in heaven, all believers will see the fullness of God. In the meantime, look for God’s glory here on earth. When you spend time with Him, He will point it out to you (Exodus 33:18-19). And when you do God’s will, you show God’s glory to others (John 17:4, 1 Peter 2:12).

Isaiah’s Response (Isaiah 6:5-8)

Ask: What do you think Isaiah’s reaction was to what he saw? Listen for answers. Say: We might think it was pretty great for Isaiah to get to see this vision. But Isaiah’s first thought was not how blessed he was to see this. Let’s read his reaction:

“How terrible it is for me!” I cried out. “I’m about to be destroyed! My mouth speaks sinful words. And I live among people who speak sinful words. Now I have seen the King with my own eyes. He is the Lord who rules over all.”

A seraph flew over to me. He was holding a hot coal. He had used tongs to take it from the altar. He touched my mouth with the coal. He said, “This has touched your lips. Your guilt has been taken away. Your sin has been paid for.” - Isaiah 6:5-7

Note to Teacher: The coal was taken out of the altar that is in heaven. In the book of Revelation, John also speaks of an altar in heaven. It is in front of the throne of God. It has fire on it and a cloud of incense above it. An angel ministers at it, and the prayers and thanksgiving of believers are offered on it (Revelation 6:9, 8:3-5).

Say: Isaiah was scared to death! In the Bible, every time a person sees God’s glory or God’s angels, they become very frightened because when they come face to face with the holiness God, all of a sudden they can see how unholy they are (Daniel 10:7-10, Luke 2:10, Acts 9:3-4). It’s sort of like this. Show your many colors of gray, cream, and off-white papers. Ask: Of all these papers, which is the brightest? Allow students to choose the brightest paper, and hold it in the front of your stack. Say: We are a people of “compare-ers.” We compare our actions to those of others to see whether we are acting right. And, quite honestly, compared to all the people in the world, Isaiah was probably one of the best people there was. But when he saw the glory of God, all of a sudden it was like this. Turn on your light source and hold it up with the paper. Ask: Now which is brightest? Say: There is NO COMPARISON! Although Isaiah was better than most people, he knew that he was filthy compared to God’s pure holiness. Isaiah admitted that he was a sinner. He did not make excuses for his sinfulness. He did not blame anyone else, and he did not run and hide from God.

So what could Isaiah do about his sinful condition? Absolutely nothing! God’s messenger flew to Isaiah, took a burning coal from the altar, and touched his lips. (Now, this was a vision - he was not actually burned with a coal.) Fire is used in the Bible to purify things (Malachi 3:2-3). This burning coal from God’s altar was a symbol that God was the One who made Isaiah pure. Only God can save someone from his sins (Revelation 7:10). God did not just cover up Isaiah’s sin. God took Isaiah’s sins away! Isaiah’s sins would not be remembered or talked about ever again because God took them away!

Application: Just as God took away all of Isaiah’s sins, God wants to take away your sin also. He sent His Son, Jesus, to become the perfect sacrifice that takes away your sin. If you believe this, AND you place your faith in Him, do you know what the Bible says that God does with your sin?

  • God purifies us from your sins by the blood of Jesus (1 John 1:7).
  • God takes your sins from you as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12).
  • Your sins can never be found (Jeremiah 50:20).
  • He forgives you of your sin and cleans you from all wickedness (I John 1:9).
  • God will trample on your sins under His foot. Just imagine God stomping His foot on your sin! And God throws all your sins into the deepest part of the sea (Micah 7:19).

Say: After God took away Isaiah’s sin, Isaiah actually heard God speak!

Then I heard the voice of the Lord. He said, “Who will I send? Who will go for us?”

I said, “Here I am. Send me!” - Isaiah 6:8

God was looking for the person who would be His messenger. Isaiah did not hesitate. He wanted to be the one used by God. Isaiah had seen the AMAZING splendor, power, and holiness of God. God had wiped out his sin and made him PURE. Now Isaiah would go anywhere and do anything for the Lord. He wanted to proclaim God’s message. Just think: The burning coal was touched to Isaiah’s lips because those lips, that were once sinful, would now be used to proclaim God’s truth!

Application: If you have put your trust in Jesus, you, too, have been purified by the perfect, holy God. God is still looking for people who are willing to tell His message. Will your response be just like that of Isaiah?

God’s Message Through Isaiah (Isaiah 6:8-13)

Say: After this incredible time with the Lord, God instructed Isaiah to go and speak to His people, the Israelites. Certainly Isaiah was eager to tell God’s message, but it would be a very difficult one. God even warned Isaiah that almost no one would listen to him (Isaiah 6:9-10). But that wouldn’t stop Isaiah from telling! He spoke BOLDLY.

God’s people had turned their backs on God. The people ignored God’s laws and did whatever they wanted. Because of their sin, they were separated from God (Isaiah 8:17). The people did not think about the cost of doing things their own way! They didn’t think about how terrible their lives would be without God in it. You see, God is the only good that we have in this world. Without God, things become more and more evil. Through Isaiah, God announced the consequences of living without the holy God.

Jerusalem is about to fall. And so is Judah. They say and do things against the Lord. They dare to disobey Him to His very face. The look on their faces is a witness against them. They show off their sin, just as the people of Sodom did. They don’t even try to hide it. How terrible it will be for them! They have brought trouble on themselves. - Isaiah 3:8-9

The people were going to lose wars, go without food, and even kill each other! Through Isaiah, God warned of these things. God gave these warnings because the Israelites had to understand their problem before they would accept God’s solution. They had to know how sad and difficult their lives would become without Him before they would accept the Savior that God was going to send.

Isaiah didn’t only tell bad news. After His vision, he also told the great news about the Savior that God was going to send. God had promised this Savior from the beginning (Genesis 3:15), and God ALWAYS keeps His promises! Isaiah did not tell Jesus’ name, but he told so many things about Him. Listen to just a few of the prophecies that Isaiah spoke:

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on His shoulders. And He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. - Isaiah 9:6 NIV

But the servant was pierced because we had sinned. He was crushed because we had done what was evil. He was punished to make us whole again. His wounds have healed us. - Isaiah 53:5

He was arrested and sentenced to death. Then He was taken away. He was cut off from this life. He was punished for the sins of my people. - Isaiah 53:8

Isaiah proclaimed God’s message for over 50 years! The vision that Isaiah saw at the beginning of his ministry never grew dim in his memory because he remained with God; he abided in Him. God is so patient. For 50 years, He pleaded with His people:

People of Israel, return to the Lord. - Isaiah 31:6a

Application: God does not change! (Malachi 3:6) He is still everything that Isaiah saw. We have not had the vision that Isaiah had. We have not seen God’s glory displayed in His throne room in heaven, although one day all believers will see that - and that will be SO COOL! But the Bible tells us that the whole world shows us the glory of God. So right now, let’s think of what we have seen. Everyone close your eyes for a minute. Think of the most magnificent scene you have ever witnessed. Maybe it is the vast Grand Canyon, or a beautiful mountain range on a crisp fall day, or a sunset that seemed to set the sky on fire. Now, in your mind, back up, way up. Picture the earth from outer space. Our enormous planet was simply spoken into existence by God. Now that is a powerful, magnificent, perfect, holy God. And if you have put your trust in His Son, He has lifted your sins from you. He has stomped on them and cast them into the deepest part of the ocean. He remembers them no more.

There are so many people who have not heard the message that God loved them enough to send His only Son, Jesus, to die on the cross to take away their sin. Today, that glorious God is asking, “Who will I send? What (1st, 2nd, 3rd...Grader*) will go and tell people that I have made a way for them through Jesus? Who will tell their friends that I can save them?” Now, will you say, just like Isaiah, “Here I am! Send me!”? Pause for kids to respond inwardly.

*Teacher - adapt this age group to the ages of the students you are teaching.

Okay, open your eyes. If you said, “Here I am, send me!” Let your huddle group leader know. He or she would love to pray for you. And, if you closed your eyes and pictured God’s glory, but you know you have not been cleansed from your sin by putting your trust in Jesus, please see me after class. I would love to talk to you about how God wants to take away your sin and throw it into the deepest part of the sea!

PPT KEY VERSE

Key Verse:

Then I heard the voice of the Lord. He said, “Who will I send? Who will go for us?” I said, “Here I am. Send me!” - Isaiah 6:8

PPT MAIN POINT

Main Point: We should listen to God’s call to go and tell His message that Jesus saves.

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Related Topics: Prophets