Peter Doecke - Williams and Perth Special Meetings - May, 2006

Hymn 306

That’s a beautiful hymn, isn’t it, when we think of the prospects that are ahead, here and now for everyone to be a light in the world and to be the salt of the earth. To young people maybe, to give their lives in the best way for the saving of souls and maybe God is waiting for you. The call must be going out and what is happening to it? I was told when I was fighting the battle in a meeting like this, that some people are able but not willing, and others willing and not able. Fair are the prospects all ahead. We are grateful that God has brought us into something that is not in vain.

We heard the expression: every time we pray, every time we go to a meeting, it’s not in vain! Every meeting we miss, we miss the wonderful way God can give us strength for the next battle. For this cause, many are week and sickly among you. Not putting value on it, not appreciating the place where we can get grace that is sufficient for us. He waits for thee! 

A few things I have been thinking about in Isaiah 6. I have been thinking about Abraham, Joseph, Moses, and Jesus above all. Every one of us can say, that read the Word of God, meditate and think about; that there are lives we may be more familiar with that inspire us when we read about them. And we say, “Isn’t it wonderful! Wouldn’t we like to be like that?”

We sang of the rocky slopes, the mountains and the valleys, dark times, the way of the cross, way of self-denial, and the way of greatest peace. Every inspired soul in our day and in the Word of God’s day inspired us because they were absolutely willing for the way of the cross. To not just coast along: like when you get behind a big truck, but deny themselves, take up their cross and follow Jesus. Anyone that’s not doing that can only be a discouragement.

Isaiah 6 – it’s about a little experience he had himself. Isaiah was given a message for God’s people by the inspiration of God’s Spirit or maybe a major experience. It was a major experience with God because every experience with God is a major one, and any other is a minor. “In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and His train filled the temple. Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly. And one cried unto another, and said, 'Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts: the whole earth is full of His glory.'” He was the Creator, the Lord, the King and these were heavenly messengers and they had a wonderful message. We would have the same message today when God inspires us by His message: and the same way is safe.

Now I don’t know what all this means, but one or two things: “And the posts of the door moved at the voice of Him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.” Wonderful when the posts of the door of our hearts are moved by the voice of God, and the temple – our house, the living body - is filled with the spirit of heaven. “Then I said in the presence of God; seeing His glory, His touch, His power, and being moved, said, 'Woe is me!'" Is that how we feel in the presence of God? That’s how I feel today, “Woe! I am undone and in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of Hosts.” Wonderful thing we have been blessed with help today from heaven itself, for my companions that brought help, because they have simply, like this man said, “Here am I.”

Verse 6, “Then flew one of the seraphims unto me.” It’s a very personal experience and I hope we have this today; whether we be a servant of God or fill our place in the place He gives us – not the one we choose ourselves. “Having a live coal in his hand, which he had taken with the tongs from off the altar: and he laid it upon my mouth and said, 'Lo, this hath touched thy lips; and thine iniquity is taken away and thy sin purged.'” What a beautiful message for a man that felt so undone, because the live coal, the Spirit of Christ has now died and is now living to intercede for us. The same live coal that will touch and purge and make us clean again, gives us hope and promises us power to be what we ought to be. “Thy sin purged.” Did he have anything to do with it himself? No! It was the gift of God! And we are here today redeemed and a cleansed people because we accepted the gift.

But it doesn’t stop there, “I also heard the voice of the Lord saying:” Have we heard the voice of the Lord saying today? Or have we just heard somebody speaking from the platform? We are very responsible to do what He has spoken to us: and I am very responsible to do what the Lord has spoken to me. I do feel relieved and uplifted: cleansed, knowing this is to my own heart. By the love of God and the intercession of the Saviour – “I heard the voice of the Lord saying, 'Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?'" Who was speaking? Jesus was speaking: and He was speaking in the presence of the Father, “Who will go for us?” Have we seen Jesus today in all His love, in all His beauty? Are there any reservations in your heart, my heart, why we shouldn’t answer the call why we shouldn’t go if God called us?

Verse 8, “Whom shall I send and who will go for us? Then said I, 'Here am I, send me.'” Verse 6, “And He said, 'Go and tell this people.'” He didn’t have a very pleasant task I might tell you, speaking to God’s people. But that didn’t alter the fact that God had spoken to him and he made himself available. This kingdom: from the beginning of time until the end of time, will be furnished by people who are called of God and who make themselves available. I tremble to think what would happen to a person that was called, but said – like we often as God’s servants are told – not available; can’t come this week; we have other things on …. Well, we may answer like that but what would happen? I don’t really have an answer to that. That’s why we are here today trying to do the little that we can. Isaiah was just a man like you and I. We read about all those beautiful people in the Word of God that were special people. But on the other hand they were human beings like you and I but the inspiration that they had was because they kept answering the call of God, “Here am I.”

Abraham, that wonderful man: first of all the Lord spoke to him and I believe he did know the Lord. Genesis 12:1-4, “Now the Lord had said unto Abram, 'Get thee out of thy country and from thy kindred and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: and I will make of thee a great nation and I will bless thee and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing. And I will bless them that bless thee and curse him that curseth thee; and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.' So Abram departed as the Lord had spoken unto him: and Lot went with him.” But Abraham did as the Lord had said. So that was the beginning that we have on record of Abram’s life. That beautiful subject of Abraham offering up Isaac: a beautiful story and a subject in itself that I can’t do any justice to. But what we are saying is the inspiration of these people to whom God was able to speak, and they responded accordingly.

Chapter 22:1, “And it came to pass after these things that God did tempt Abraham and said unto him, 'Abraham,' and he said, 'Behold, here I am.'” God spoke to him. He knew the voice of God: had known the promises of God fulfilled in giving him his own son Isaac - that miraculous birth which is a type of Christ. But God was speaking to him and he didn’t know what was ahead. I am sure Abraham didn’t know before by the way he had answered. God looked down and called him His friend and God knew how much he loved Him. The way Abraham would answer was because of the way he’d answered before. Not like some of us who try to push it behind us, but God knew the way he would answer. “Behold, here I am. Look at me? I am here waiting to be used.” Beautiful thing: and this was afterwards, “Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest and get thee into the land of Moriah and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.” “Here am I; I have presented myself to you, Lord.” So the Lord had a right to ask of him what he had to do. That was the way it was. So the Lord told him He wanted the very hardest thing that he could have possibly asked. What does it tell us? It doesn’t speak of any conversation, but Abraham rose up early in the morning and took all the necessary preparation with him to go the way of the cross and to deny himself to the uttermost. He took enough wood to burn the sacrifice. He took personal care of the knife and the fire. A beautiful picture: they went both together. Then there were some questions asked which give us the key of why Abraham was able to do what he did. “God himself shall provide.” There was wonderful faith seeing it.

I like the answer that Jesus gave, “Abraham rejoiced to see My day and he was glad.” Do you know why people stand on this platform and try to say what they say? It can be done in no other way but a clear and personal revelation of what God has done for my soul. We will not continue unless we really see Jesus and who He is. It takes away any reservation and unwillingness. An inspiration: Abraham: they went both together. How did it start? Where everything starts when we put our lives into the hand of God: whether young or middle-aged or otherwise, when we begin to walk in newness of life. Not in human power but the power of God in giving us the victory as in all our loved ones that have gone on before. How did they get the victory? The same as others: the same as Jesus! Through the grace of God which is the power of Christ and the power of the resurrection, which enables us to walk in this way. Abraham got everything ready and raised the knife to slay his son and the angel called him out of heaven and said, “Abraham, Abraham," and he said, "Here am I.” (Verse 11) He made himself available.

The angel called him at the top of the mount where the Lord had told him to go so he was in the centre of the Will of God. If he had been out on the plain and said, “This is the place I’ll build the altar.” But he was right in the place where God wanted him to be. So when God called him, he said, “Here am I.” The Lord knew where he was: knew his heart, knew his feelings. God and Jesus were looking down upon the top of that mount. God wasn’t disappointed in the man He chose to be the father of His chosen race. And there isn’t a generation that couldn’t look up with admiration to Abraham and his trueness to God, simply by beginning, “Here I am.”

In Genesis 37, we have this wonderful young man. We have got lots of young men and women here today: we know the struggle and we would like to make ourselves available for any questions they may have at any time, though we would like the spirit to help them. Here was this young man with his experience with God: and the most important thing was God told him, “You must be upright.” That’s the most important revelation any young person can get today: no compromise, be upright, be true and remember whose we are and to whom we belong. God has called us to be the light of the world and the salt of the earth. In fact young people shine if they are doing the right thing as wonderful lights in this world of darkness. Modest, pure, young people and we are proud of them, but only when they allow the Spirit of God to lead them.

Verse 13, “Israel said unto Joseph…. 'Come, and I will send thee unto them.' And he said to him, 'Here am I.'” He presented himself to his father and went down into the midst of his brethren that hated him: just like Jesus. And what did they do? Put him in the pit and later dragged him out and sold him to the Midianite merchant men. I will tell you, if you get out in the world and allow the world to use you and abuse you; you will just be sold into slavery because they couldn’t do anything else. But the Lord was with him. I was thinking of the story of Joseph’s experience with God in depth; when God was actually, contrary to human reasoning, God was engineering his experience so that one day he would be a type of Saviour; a type of bread of life to the very ones that hated him and despised him. God hasn’t chosen us to an easier way, but to truth and eternal life. It’s the way of the cross. It begins and continues by us saying, “Here am I.” That was the occasion with Joseph.

Exodus 3:1, Moses kept the flock of Jethro, his father-in-law, and the angel of the Lord appeared to him out of a bush; and the bush burned with fire but wasn’t consumed. And Moses said, “I will turn aside.” That’s what we have done today and we have seen Jesus. When the Lord saw that – Isn’t that nice? We have all turned aside today to see the bush that burned but wasn’t consumed: that’s the beautiful life of Jesus. Has He disappointed us? If He has, our hearts are too hard: we are resisting, we lack faith but we can pray for all those things and we will be helped. “When the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush and said, 'Moses, Moses,' and he said, 'Here am I.' And he said, 'Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground.' Moreover He said, 'I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.' And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.”  God was calling out a deliverer, a beautiful thing. And what did He show him? He showed him the most perfect life, the perfect way to live that we can be burned up in. What’s burning up your life? What’s burning up my life? We can be burnt up with things that will burn us out and leave us with nothing. But God will call us and has called us into something that we can be totally consumed in, but never burnt out when we are in the very presence of the One who loved us and washed us from our sins and gave us the opportunity to live, which wasn’t in vain. Moses’ meekness wasn’t weakness, but God was able to use him.

John 18:1, “When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples over the brook Cedron where was a garden, into which He entered, and His disciples. And Judas also, which betrayed Him, knew the place, for Jesus ofttimes resorted thither with His disciples…. Jesus therefore, knowing all things that should come upon Him, went forth and said unto them, 'Whom seek ye?'” This is the picture at the close of Jesus’ life. At 12 years of age: which is a good rule of thumb, at the youngest age where people should make their choice for God; there are exceptions. But Jesus Himself, “Wist ye not that I must be about My Father’s business?” It tells the Spirit led Him to go home with His parents to be in subjection to them, which is an absolute hallmark for young people, for the children of God. To profess Godliness, we should be in subjection to Godly parents. And now here was Jesus facing the cross: facing the agony and, worst of all, knowing His Father would have to forsake Him and turn away from Him.

Verse 6, “He said unto them, 'I am He.'” He knew their intentions. He knew what God had planned, so He was really saying, “Here am I,” wasn’t He? They went backward and fell on the ground, so He asked them again. And He answered, “I have told you that I am He; if therefore ye seek Me, let these go their way.” He was talking about His disciples. “This doesn’t belong to them right now. This is My experience. I have to face this alone: here am I, I am He!” And yes, they led Jesus away to Calvary to die for your sins and for my sins so we could never have any doubt about the kind of love Jesus had towards us. This kingdom has always been furnished and inspired by people who simply presented themselves, as we heard so nicely this morning and God can take over and do the miraculous work of righteousness within their souls.

Meeting closed with Hymn 396