“Then one of the seraphim flew to me with a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with tongs from the altar. With it he touched my mouth and said, ‘See, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away and your sin atoned for.’ ”
– Isaiah 6:6,7
Yesterday, we saw God’s love and mercy extended to His servant, Isaiah, the prophet who was dedicated in service to the temple of the Lord. His whole life changed after one moment in the temple where God in theophany appeared. His reaction: “Woe is me. I am a man of unclean lips.” Today, I want to share that as a teenager, I would teach our small high school Bible study from this passage in Isaiah Chapter 6. I thought that “unclean lips” meant he cussed, so I would teach my peers not to use foul language.
I have learned from Jewish law that this text is not about cursing. Unclean lips means using your words to harm people and get power for yourself. You have taken the Lord’s name in vain, which does not mean saying, “Oh my God.” To serve yourself, you are communicating “things that you claim are from God, but are not from God.” It’s also doing evil in God’s name. Perhaps Isaiah lied and tainted someone’s reputation. Maybe he gossiped or revealed a secret that someone entrusted to Him. Until this point, he justified it by thinking, “It’s okay; I’m just like every other man here.”
Friend, as Isaiah was in God’s presence, all this unconscious guilt and shame of hurting people with his words came to the surface. Yet God extended His love, forgiveness, and grace to His servant. Let’s seek to encounter God’s presence, knowing His love will transform us without guilt or condemnation.
Father, thank you for extending your love and grace to me. Help me use my words to serve and help others.
Have you asked God for an encounter with His presence? How have you experienced the transformation of His love and forgiveness?
If you’re unable to attend your local church or need some additional weekly inspiration, be sure to tune into Hour of Power every Sunday at 11:00 a.m. PT on TBN or watch online at hourofpower.org/episode.
One thought on “A Man of Unclean Lips”
I enjoyed this as I also thought it meant cussing. That is why I know I must attend church and listen to a variety of Pastor’s sermons to learn these things rather than just read the Bible on my own. Thank you.