Prophet, Pandemic, and Apocalypse

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.”

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The difference between prediction and prophecy:

  • If a prediction comes to pass, it has been a success
    • If a prophecy comes to pass, it has failed

Isaiah was a prophet, not a prognosticator

  • The goal of prophecy is repentance, not fortune-telling

King Uzziah reigned during good times—domestic tranquility & economic plenty

  • What happens when the “good times” run out?
  • Isaiah saw the Lord.

Because of the pandemic, many of us feel that the “good times” have run out for us

The pandemic as “an” apocalypse versus the pandemic as “the” apocalypse

Apocalypse means “revealing” or “unveiling”

The pandemic may be our opportunity to see some things more clearly!

Things we may more clearly seen through the pandemic:

  1. Our Idols
    1. Technology
    1. “Expertise”
    1. Wealth & Power
    1. Our independence and plans
  • Ourselves
    • We have limited understanding
    • We have limited control
    • We are inherently vulnerable
  • Our Calling
    • To repent
    • To trust God
    • To serve one another
    • To proclaim the Gospel

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