Thursday, October 16, 2008

Holy, Holy, Holy

Tonight in my Systematic Theology class the prof lectured and led discussion on the attributes of God. We are currently in the midst of studying Theology Proper, God himself and it has been incredible thus far. I was reminded tonight in a new way of the majesty and holiness of our Creator God. The last 30 min. of class we watched a video of R.C. Sproul preaching a sermon years ago on the holiness of God.

The passage he preached from is a familiar one, Isaiah 6, where Isaiah has a vision and just prior to his commissioning. This entry may get a little long but the content is worth reflecting and remembering.

Isaiah 6:1-3

"In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on the throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him were seraphs, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. And they were calling to one another: 'Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.'"

Holy, holy, holy, this is the only time in Scripture that an attribute of God is repeated 3x in succession. No where in the Bible does it say mercy, mercy, mercy is the Lord, or love, love, love is the Lord. He IS those things and to a degree that no one and no thing else in the world is; however, HOLINESS is what Scripture emphasizes most as an attribute of God.

Sproul made a comparison of Queen Elizabeth entering the Abby at her inauguration as Queen Mother and how several attendants helped carry the train of her royal robe down the isle. When Isaiah looks upon the Lord HIS robe fills the entire temple! The visuals given in this passage are powerful to consider. Also the seraphs covered their eyes with two of their wings. Even as angelic beings they could not look directly at the glory or holiness of the LORD God. This was not new to me but it set the stage for another comparison.

Sproul went on to talk about the experience Moses had in Exodus 33:18-23 when he asks God to see his glory. No one can see God's glory and live (v. 20) but God allows Moses to see his backside briefly as his glory passes by (v. 23). Later in Exodus 34:29 as Moses comes down from the top of the mountain to meet with the Israelites and they cannot look at him because his face is so radiant. Moses' face is blinding to the people and that is from a mere brief glimpse of the backside of God!

Part of our class discussion prior to watching Sproul's sermon was on the presence and power of God. He has the whole world, the whole universe in His hands and at the same time, for those who profess faith in Christ, He resides in our hearts! God is infinitely greater than and more intimate than anything I can comprehend. There is no comparison to God.

In our post-sermon class discussion a comment was made how often times we as Christians become apathetic and indifferent to God's majesty. I didn't hear much of the conversation after that comment because I was pierced at how often I become apathetic and indifferent in my reverence, awe, and recognition of God. He alone is worthy of all my praise, worship, adoration, love and trust. I honestly don't remember the last time I prayed in awe of who God is, remembering that He is holy, holy, holy.

After class I went and sat in our chapel (an auditorium that seats 2,000) alone in silence pondering this truth again with a fresh perspective. God alone is holy, holy, holy and worthy of our admiration, our love, and our reverence. His glory is beyond what we can fathom and experience. That is powerful!

2 comments:

The Thompson Family said...

Hey Anita...it's Denise Ritchey (Thompson). I found your blog through Jen & Kris Howell's blog...what a treat! I LOVE this post. How incredibly true! I can't believe you wrote about this because I was just thinking about God's holiness after reading the passage in Exodus about Moses and his face bright and radiating HIS holiness. Thanks for posting...I have subscribed! Love you girl! :)

ace said...

Small world! So good to hear from you Denise! I tried to get on your blog but couldn't will you email or post your blog site so I can add you? Thanks for your comment. I look forward to catching up!