Devotional of the week: Unclean

“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips.” Isaiah 6:5

"Adam and Eve" by George Hayter - British Museum (public domain)

“Adam and Eve” by George Hayter – British Museum (public domain)

My kids are still young enough that when they have done something wrong, they usually confess straight away. They (thankfully) haven’t yet learned how to hide their shame or guilt. But at some point they will probably acquire this practice, whether as a coping strategy in the tough world or for more self-interested reasons. May the Lord help my husband and me to train them in keeping a pure heart.

Isaiah, when faced with the holiness of God, comprehends immediately the depth of his sin. He had been warning the Israelites about their transgressions, but here before the holy God he sees that neither is he worthy. Isaiah knows what God has been saying about the sins of his people, for he has been the conduit of his message. Surely, he thinks, he is ruined.

Jesus later told the Pharisees that “the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them” (Matthew 15:18). Likewise Isaiah realizes, as he looks on the holiness of God, that out of his lips come the impurities of his heart. But as we will see next week, God sends him help for his redemption – just as he has for us.

Have you experienced an utter realization of the depth of your sin? If so, how did you respond? And how did God?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, we repent for the sins of our heart and our mouths. Live in and through us, that our words would be as sweet as honey.

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