(Article for publication week of 3-30-2011 AD)
"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’ " (Isaiah 6:5).
When Isaiah came in contact with the Thrice Holy God, he was overcome with a sense of fear and dread. He was permitted to have a vision of the very Throne Room of Heaven and to behold celestial beings crying continually before the LORD, “holy, holy, holy.” He realized he was in the hands of a Holy God.
Such is the experience of all those who come in contact with the One True God. “Woe is me”, cries the awakened sinner. “I am a man of unclean lips. I am thrice unholy. I am a sinner by virtue of the Fall (Romans 5:19); I am a sinner by nature (Psalm 51:5); and I am a sinner by practice (Romans 3:23).” God is Thrice Holy, and we are thrice unholy. What a dreadful thing to realise that you are a thrice-unholy sinner, in the hands of a Thrice Holy God!
Sinner, has your conscience been awakened to that solemn reality? You are an unclean person. You are loathsome and obnoxious to the LORD. You are in the hands of One Who will deal with you according to His Thrice Holy Nature. Whatever God does with you, it will be in keeping with His holiness. God won’t quit being Holy just to keep you out of hell. Now you better let that sink in neighbour.
This generation of churchgoers thinks that God is like Santa Claus. It is apparent by the irreverence in our churches that not many church - goers have ever come in contact with the same God that Isaiah came in contact with. “There is no fear of God before their eyes” is written upon the false profession of everyone who claims to be a believer, but has never cried out, “woe is me for I am undone!”
Now, I have an encouraging word for the remnant that have come in contact with God by the awakening work of the Holy Spirit. If you continue reading in Isaiah 6, you will read that one of the seraphims took a live coal form the altar, and laid it on Isaiah’s lips, and pronounced that his iniquity was taken away, and his sins were purged! My friend, that is a picture of the saving work of Christ. Christ laid down His life on an alter of sacrifice to satisfy the Holy justice and wrath of a Thrice Holy God. There it is! Salvation for the thrice unholy so they may stand before the Thrice Holy God without sin or iniquity!
Now, I have a solemn word for you who have never been awakened to your lost condition. Some of you are lost in filthy sins, and some of you are lost in self-righteousness and dead profession, but if you have never been awakened to see that you are a person of unclean lips, you are lost world without end. And you too are in the hands of a Holy God. You have never come in contact with God by the saving and regenerating work of the Holy Spirit, but you will come in contact with Him when you die and stand before His judgment throne. “Woe is me “, you will cry forever as you weep and wail and gnash your teeth forever in hell. What a terrible way to come into contact with a Thrice Holy God! To have His holy justice administered to you forever! May the Thrice Holy God have mercy on thrice unholy sinners is my prayer!