Authentic Christianity Begins …

Sunset - 1

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him were seraphim, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. And they were calling to one another:

“Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty; the whole earth is full of his glory.”

At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.

“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the LORD Almighty.”

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.”

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”

And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” Isaiah 6:1-8

For 52 years, King Uzziah ruled Israel, and the people loved him.
“And as long as he [King Uzziah] sought the Lord, God made him to prosper” (II Chronicles 26:5).
Who could fill the throne as well as King Uzziah? What would become of the nation?
An empty throne. A failing Northern Kingdom. Confusion and despair.
In a time of hopelessness, Isaiah sees the Lord of Hosts on the throne. Holy. Exalted. Worshipped.
I love the song, “I Can Only Imagine.” “Will I sing ‘Hallelujah’? Will I be able to speak at all? I can only imagine.”
Isaiah’s response was different. When he saw the holiness of God, he realized his depravity.
He was unable to remove his guilt and his sin, but when the altar’s burning coal touched his lips, he was cleansed.
Then, the call to an authentic walk with God.
“Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
“Here am I. Send me!”
And the Lord sent him to warn the people to turn from their sin.
Most of us don’t have a dramatic encounter with God like Isaiah did. However, we have glimpses of God’s glory in each day’s sunrise and sunset, the unfolding of a rose, or the birth of a baby.
We have a love letter from God, the Bible, that shows us God’s nature, and we have the Holy Spirit to teach us.
God is at work in us, and we may recognize it in the small things: a prompting to pray for a friend – later, you find out that the friend was just diagnosed with cancer, a “yes” to a prayer, a door closed and a better opportunity opened.
Authentic Christianity begins with the recognition of God’s holiness and our depravity.
As we think about God’s nature, His holiness, His love for us, our initial response is “Woe is me! I am unclean.”
The altar’s burning coal, Jesus’s death on the cross, cleanses us. Jesus paid the price for our sin, and He conquered death by rising from the dead three days after His crucifixion.
After the burning coal’s touch, Isaiah never said “Woe is me! I am unclean.” He went where God sent him, and he served the Lord and the Lord’s people.
An authentic Christian’s response to glimpses of the majesty of the Lord God Almighty is “Send me.”
God equips.
We go.
We serve.
Remaining authentic is the key.

My prayer:

Lord God Almighty, we are humbled that You would share glimpses of Your holiness and exalted nature with us. Great are You, Lord. Holy, Holy, Holy are You, Lord God Almighty. We praise You and give You honor. Bless Your people as we study Your Word and learn how to follow You authentically. Amen.
Let’s study authenticity together in a series of posts.
Please share your insights or questions about the authentic Christian
in the comment section.

11 responses to “Authentic Christianity Begins …”

  1. deanna reynolds Avatar

    Thank you for reading it and so commenting. Our interim pastor wrote me: “I do not hold to a progressive view of revelation as you describe it. Not only do I believe God’s revelation through the Bible to be closed (as you put it), but I believe ALL of His revelation to be complete. His general revelation through creation. His specific revelation through His Word, the Bible. And His personal revelation through the Incarnation of His Son, Jesus. I do not believe there is more to be “unveiled” progressively, as you put it. It is already complete in Christ.”

    Praise God, He equips those He calls: the Lord had called me to share the truths expressed in that article with this Baptist pastor, and He emboldened me to humbly stand firm in LOVE on His truth before this man with a PhD in theology, knowing that “our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant…” (2 Cor. 3:5b-6).

    Receiving our Lord’s continual humbling and trusting and relying on Him ALONE like little children are so vitally important, aren’t they? (I want to give Him more glory by reminding you that this is a triple-boarded physician, someone with 13 years of formal education after graduating from high school, who is testifying of His grace to humble the proud…)

    1. possesshispromises Avatar

      Deanna, as you know, we all have different backgrounds and experiences that help to shape the meaning we place on words and concepts. God’s Word is complete, AND the Holy Spirit guides us in understanding the Word and in our Christian walk. The Holy Spirit gifts of the Spirit to those He wills, including prophecy (1 Cor. 12). There is also the word of knowledge and discernment. I grew up in the Midwest and attended a Methodist church. I was taught that the gifts of the Spirit were only for the Acts church and not for today. Well, I learned that God still works miracles and still heals (He healed me on November 21, 2010 of fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue), the Holy Spirit still gives gifts like speaking in tongues, discernment and prophecy as well as the other gifts mentioned. It’s OK, the Holy Spirit leads those who are willing, and He nudges others. We’ll all be surprised and delighted when we see Him in all His glory, for we’ll all find that we were wrong in our inadequate understanding of our Lord. May you be blessed in an ever-increasing knowledge of the Lord. Karen

      1. deanna reynolds Avatar

        Amen! Love the fellowship with a like-minded disciple of Christ, and again, I am thrilled to know another who has experiential knowledge that Jesus IS the same yesterday, today, and forever: He still heals miraculously, and when we aren’t miraculously healed, the issue is NOT a shortcoming on God’s part! I forget whether you have seen this ~35 page Bible study that He gave for me to write two years ago, so here is a link just in case He so leads you:

        1. possesshispromises Avatar

          Thanks, Deanna, I’ll review your Bible study. Enjoying our conversations. Bless you. Karen

  2. deanna reynolds Avatar

    Here is another, which actually preceded the first writing, and which caused some upset with my Baptist interim pastor, for he did not believe God still reveals Christ despite Jesus indicating in Matt. 16:17-18 that the Father’s revelation of Christ to us and our confession of it IS the rock on which His Church is built.

    1. possesshispromises Avatar

      Deanna, I don’t understand why your pastor had an issue with Matthew 16:17-18. That’s how every person who comes to Jesus–the Holy Spirit reveals the work of Jesus on the cross. Great post! Thanks for pointing me to your post. Blessings Karen

  3. jenelle Avatar

    Good Job Karen! Authentic Christianity is somewhere between here and heaven. We need to connect with it now, serve Him and His people and reach a lost world. This isn’t just about Sunday mornings, it is about daily denying ourselves and serving Him and others because we serve a Holy Authentic God. Where else can we go and be authentic? Certainly where ever He takes us with the power of the Holy Spirit.
    Touched and cleansed by the cross. Thank you Jesus! Looking forward to the next entry.

    1. possesshispromises Avatar

      Great words of wisdom, Jenelle. Yes, we are walking towards heaven and ministering to the world, stretching from the world of hypocrisy towards the eternity of authenticity, with the Holy Spirit empowering and guiding us. God knows us better than we know ourselves … AND He still loves us! Amazing. How can we not be authentic before the Lover of our Souls? God IS AUTHENTICALLY TRUTH, LOVE, HOLY, ALMIGHTY, ALPHA & OMEGA! Blessings, Karen

  4. deanna reynolds Avatar

    Always refreshing to read writings such as this! In reading this now, I am prompted to share something I just learned via Chuck Missler: “holy” is said three times here in Is. 6:3 and in Rev. 4:8 because God is triune, Father, Son, and Spirit.

    1. possesshispromises Avatar

      Thank you! I love Chuck Missler. I had not read that, but it makes great sense. Also, “holy” once is nice, “holy” twice is outstanding, but “holy” three times is the best. Much like good, better, best. Wishing you many blessings. Interested in your insight about Christian authenticity. Karen

      1. deanna reynolds Avatar

        In praying about how the Lord wanted me to respond about my thoughts on authentic Christianity, He brought this writing to mind:
        Now I’ll be looking forward to your response to it. 😊

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