“It was in the year King Uzziah died that I saw the Lord. He was sitting on a lofty throne, and the train of his robe filled the Temple. Attending him were mighty seraphim, each having six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. They were calling out to each other, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies! The whole earth is filled with his glory!” Their voices shook the Temple to its foundations, and the entire building was filled with smoke.” – Isaiah 6:1-4.
When Isaiah comes into the presence of the Lord, it is obvious how he feels about the Lord. He saw the Lord sitting on a lofty throne and his response was one of absolute conviction and a sense of the awesomeness of God. The seraphims in verse 3 were saying, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s armies.” The Bible says that the primary reason we come together is to worship God, to experience the presence of God, to acknowledge the authority of God. We come together to encounter the living God. We come together in reverence.
The word reverence is used throughout the Bible beginning in Leviticus: “Keep my Sabbath days of rest, and show reverence toward my sanctuary. I am the Lord,” (Leviticus 19:30) and ending in Hebrews 12:28: “Since we are receiving a Kingdom that is unshakable, let us be thankful and please God by worshiping him with holy fear and awe.” To reverence God means to show loving respect for Him and His Word. You do not show reverence for God when you approach God lightly or when worship is hollow.
God is holy and He deserves your reverence. Proverbs tells us that the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. This type of fear is not being scared, or fearful of what will happen, nor is it distrust or terror of God. Rather, it is reference and awe that fuels our worship and faith. It is the understanding of the wonder and majesty of our incredible God, who transcends time and space, and who is bigger than the entire universe He created. He personally knows and loves us with deeper and more love than we could ever comprehend. Reverence is taking the incredible knowledge of His majesty, and applying it to our lives and giing God the glory that is rightly due Him in our worship. Psalm 49:1 says, “How great is the Lord, how deserving of praise, in the city of our God, which sits on his holy mountain!” Daniel 9:4 says, “O Lord, you are a great and awesome God! You always fulfill your covenant and keep your promises of unfailing love to those who love you and obey your commands.”
- How would you define reverence? Is it fear of God?
- What happens to your relationship with God, with others, and with the opportunities God gives you, when we are disrespectful?
- What issue is in your life that would improve with more reverence?