Today’s readings look at God choosing those He wishes to take His message to the people. First we learn how Isaiah (6:1 -8) beholds a vision of heaven and becomes acutely aware of his sin and shortcomings in comparison to the purity of God. The angel touches his lips with a burning coal from the altar of heaven and he is made clean and able to speak the message God sends him with.
Then we learn how Simon who will be named Peter (Cephas) on seeing the miracle of the massive catch of fish also tells the Lord that he is a sinful man. Jesus says “Do not be afraid. From now I will make you fishers of men.”
Finally we hear Paul’s words declaring that he is preaching the Gospel given by Christ to Peter and the apostles and he points out how unworthy he was to be called and chosen as he had persecuted Christ.
All three men are called, and answer that calling in humility. They don’t demand a right (that doesn’t exist) to be a prophet or a priest. In fact as all three were martyred, (Isaiah was sawn in half, Peter crucified upside down and Paul beheaded) I am quite sure they might have preferred the old life.
I always think how Paul had come so far in his priesthood for Christ. He had been educated by Gameliel one of the greates rabbi’s of the Jewish world. It was the cream of education. Then, when Jesus calls him, Paul finds himself under the authority of a fisherman. He never once complains about this. That’s true humility.
When God chooses these three He tells them what to say and they say it. When they spoke or wrote it was under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and so they gave us the Word of God, not their own ideas. Both Peter and Paul are clear that no one should be listening to other “gospels” that come from those who put themselves forward as preachers and teachers. Jesus had said to the twelve, “He who hears you, hears Me, and he who rejects you, rejects Me.” When Paul was made an apostle, (like Matthias who replaced Judas) then the words of Christ were applied to him.
I think it’s much harder to know where the Truth lies these days. We must pray for discernment and seek honestly the Kingdom, and remember God doesn’t leave us to seek Him in vain; but we must seek Him.