Isaiah 6:9 The heart of this people has become gross…

 

And I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go to this people? And I said, behold, I am [here], send me. And he said, Go, and say to this people, Ye shall hear indeed, but ye shall not understand; and ye shall see indeed, but ye shall not perceive. For the heart of this people has become gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes have they closed; lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them. (Isaiah 6: 8-10).

 

Brothers and sisters, do you hear the Lord's anguish in this text?

 

Whom shall I send, and who will go to this people?” The people are in need, somebody must be sent. The prophet responds, “behold, I am [here], send me.” And what does the Lord command him to say? Terrible words!

 

God sees the future as the present, and knows what will happen. He says, “Ye shall hear indeed, but ye shall not understand; and ye shall see indeed, but ye shall not perceive. For the heart of this people has become gross, and their ears are dull of hearing.” This is a terrible prophecy, brothers and sisters! The people will be blind to the truth! They will not understand what is best for them! They – or rather, we – will seek diligently after our own destruction!

 

And who, shall we ask, causes this? Does God make our hearts gross, our ears dull of hearing? No – he gives the answer in the next phrase: “their eyes have they closed.” We have done it to ourselves, brothers and sisters! We have closed our own eyes!

 

And why? “Lest they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them.”

 

There are two amazing truths here. First, we have closed our eyes because we don't want to see, or to hear, or to understand the Truth! We want to be blind, because that way we can remain in our own self-satisfied, prideful and lazy state, the broad path that seems easy but which binds us with chains even now…

 

And second: we see the role of the Lord. He doesn't blind us, but if we allow Him to, He will heal us. And He desires this more than we can imagine.

 

All we need do is let go of our own ideas about the way things should be. Hasn't He given us enough reasons to trust Him. He is all-powerful, the Creator of the world. He is all-good and loving, sacrificing Himself on the Cross for the sake of the very men who put Him to death. He is all-knowing, and sees the needs of each and every one of us. And if we allow Him to, if we pray to Him and follow His commandments instead of our own reasoning, He will completely renew us and set us on the path of salvation.

 

May it be so.

 

Dn. Nicholas Park

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One Response to “Isaiah 6:9 The heart of this people has become gross…”

  1. helen says:

    Deacon Nicholas, I like this sermon.  I always misunderstood this passage, thinking that the Lord Himself makes the people's ears and eyes and understanding dull so that He would not heal them, and I couldn't understand that.  But now I see from your explanation and by re-reading it, that it is the people, us, that make their eyes and ears dull.  It's always easier to be lazy or to ignore the truth or to simply be in denial.  That's why, as Father Seraphim says a lot, it takes great effort and, in a recent sermon of his, now violence must be done.  Violence on our part:  Fight for the Lord, struggle and strive.  Fight the Good Fight!!!
     
    Thanks again, Deacon Nicholas, for the explanation! Have a good Lent!

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