Monday after the Fourteenth Sunday after Trinity Sunday
Scripture: Isaiah 6:1-13 (NKJV)
1 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.
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.”
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.”
8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying:
“Whom shall I send, and who will go for Us?”
Then I said, “Here am I! Send me.”
9 And He said, “Go, and tell this people: ‘Keep on hearing, but do not understand; Keep on seeing, but do not perceive.’
10 “Make the heart of this people dull, and their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; Lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and return and be healed.”
11 Then I said, “Lord, how long?”
And He answered: “Until the cities are laid waste and without inhabitant, the houses are without a man, the land is utterly desolate,
12 The LORD has removed men far away, and the forsaken places are many in the midst of the land.
13 But yet a tenth will be in it, and will return and be for consuming, as a terebinth tree or as an oak, whose stump remains when it is cut down. So the holy seed shall be its stump.”
The prophet Isaiah received his call about 740 B.C. By this time Israel had a long history of ignoring God’s Holy Word and rejecting the prophets. In Isaiah’s first prophecy after his call, God warned His people that because of the hardness of their hearts He is going to harden their hearts even more. As Isaiah proclaimed this message given to him by the Lord, the leaders and people of Old Testament Israel did in fact continue to reject God’s message. God said, “Go and tell this people: ‘Keep on hearing, but do not understand; Keep on seeing, but do not perceive.'” After nearly two more centuries of rejecting God’s warnings, in 587 B.C. Israel was destroyed and most of the people were taken away into captivity.
In all four Gospels these words are used by the Apostles to teach Christ’s Church how important it is to listen to God’s Word. In the Small Catechism we have been taught that Baptism “works forgiveness of sins, rescues from death and the devil and gives eternal salvation to all who believe this, as the words and promises of God declare.” We have been given eyes to see and ears to hear. As we hear God’s Word and see God at work we have the promise that “by daily contrition and repentance the Old Adam in us is drowned and dies with all sin and evil desires, and a new man should daily emerge and arise to live before God in righteousness and purity forever.”
We pray: Dear Heavenly Father, give us eyes to see, and ears to hear You speak to us Your words of Law and Gospel in Word and Sacrament; In Jesus Christ’s Name. Amen.