Isaiah 6:1-7, “In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!” And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for 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!” Then one of the seraphim flew to me, having in his hand a burning coal that he had taken with tongs from the altar. And he touched my mouth and said: “Behold, this has touched your lips; your guilt is taken away, and your sin atoned for.”
Another note on 6:3
I have a question.
Why does it say in 6:3, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts, the whole earth is full of His glory?” Why does it not say, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts, the whole earth is full of His holiness?”
If holiness is the one defining characteristic of God, why does it say the earth full of God’s glory and not His holiness? It would seem then, that the text is implying that there is a connection between God’s holiness and God’s glory. What is that connection? The connection is seen when we define the “Glory of God.”
Defined, the Glory of God is the holiness of God put on public display. When the holiness of God fills the earth for people to see, it is called glory. The basic meaning of holy is “separate” from what is common. You see God is unique, there is none like Him, He is one of a kind. We value gold and diamonds over tin and copper because they’re rare or uncommon. Since God is one of a kind, since there is none like Him, since He is separate, since He is holy – God is infinitely precious and valuable above all other things. When His infinite value is put on display before the eyes of the seraphim and Isaiah, they call it “Glory!” So, God’s glory is the radiance (or the shining-forth) of his holiness, the out-streaming of His incomparable worth.
Nothing is more beautiful than this, nothing is greater. His glory is so immense that though we see 6:3 say it fills the whole earth we can be sure the whole of the universe isn’t large enough to contain this majestic glory. But though the whole earth can’t contain it, the whole earth does display it. “All of creation is the theatre of the glory of God.” (John Calvin) Evidence is everywhere, in fact there is so much evidence of God’s glory in what He has made in creation Paul says in Romans 1:19-20 that all men are without excuse.
The beauty of a sunrise, the calm of a sunset, the vastness of the oceans, the immense expanse of the skies, the cry of a baby, the friendship between two people, the love between a husband and wife. Ever since Genesis 1 when God said “Let there be light” it seems that there has been a kind of symphony to behold in all of creation, which all that has been made joins in on.
When was the last time you noticed it?
When was the last time you remembered that you were made walk in step with this great song of Glory?