Good Guilt!

Reading in Isaiah 6 and pondering the order of events.  Isaiah has a vision of the Lord God in his throne room.  A vision of great majesty, emphasising the holiness of God.  Isaiah’s response to this awesome vista is a painful realization of his own sinfulness before the Holy God.  God provides cleansing at Isaiah’s repentant confession.  God then declares that Isaiah’s guilt is taken away and his sin has been atoned for.  This is the essence of the faith journey, we encounter God, realize our sin, yield to God’s redemption and enter into His Kingdom.  Guilt is not always a bad feeling, if it draws us to seek God’s face.  False guilt will push us away from God, declare us unfit -which we are- but offers no redemption, only condemnation.  The issue is not our guilt, Paul reminds the Roman Church that all are guilty before God, the issue is one of redemption.  The sin that brings guilt needs atonement,  it needs dealt with, a penalty must be paid.  It cannot be swept under the rug or ignored, it must be faced.  Within Isaiah’s vision Go sent a seraph with a live coal to cleanse; for you and I, Jesus came and paid the penalty for our sin on the cross.  Isaiah 6 is an epic story because of the sense of calling to go and speak of God’s message.  After Isaiah is cleansed, and this is key, he hears God’s call, “whom shall I send?”  He can answer, “Here I am, send me!”  We sometimes get this mixed up, thinking our service for God will be what provides the atonement for our sin, but quite clearly our service arises out of God’s provision of atonement.  The gift of Isaiah is a gift for you today, serving God is not a condition for atonement, but a benefit of atonement.  God cleanses us to enter into His holiness, and from that place we can serve God. May you know the freedom of serving God from a guilt free heart!

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