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(Isaiah 57:15)

Pastor Carolyn Sissom

Sunday, May 26, 2013, the Year of Our Lord



On Friday night, May, 25, 2013, I saw written out in a dream in red, “Carolyn you are contrite”.


On awakening, I wasn’t for sure if I was being admonished or affirmed. 


Since the first of this year, I have felt a “shift” in my life.  When this happens, I press in to the Lord in prayer to “catch-up with the changes”; “walk in-sync with the Spirit”;  “walk circumspect” with the changes; and above all praise the Lord for His goodness and his wonderful works.


“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it?”(Jer. 17:9)


It is my nature (not to sound super-spiritual) to check myself out with the Lord as to motives, priorities, ministry accountability and integrity in my approach to the Holiness of the Lord, and His counsel.  This is my posture before His throne of Grace and Mercy and His Grace of Goodness.  I always pray to be “counted worthy of my calling and fulfill all the good pleasure of his goodness, and the work of faith with power.”  All of this is a simple fact, not virtue on my part, but Grace given to me by the Lord in His service.  If we fall short, “we shall also be cut off” (Rom. 11:27). 


In this Great Grace, we all walk free of condemnation and shame.   Our sins are not only forgiven, but forgotten.  We have been set free from the law of sin and death.  We have been delivered, signed and sealed into eternal peace of eternal life with Jesus.   Theology defines this “state of being” as absolution by Faith.  I define it as my Faith is a Fact. 


Romans 8:1-2:  There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.  For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death.”


As I began to pull up the scriptures on “contrite”, to my delight, I discovered that the message in my dream was not admonishing me for being overly “bent-over” before the Lord, but was an affirmation.


Whew!!! Wipe the sweat off my brow!!!


 I must have done something right!!


Every once in a while we get something right and we don’t even know what we have done.


Psa. 51:17:  The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and a contrite heart, O God you will not despise.”


Psa. 34:18:  The Lord is near unto them that are of a broken heart; and saves such as be of a contrite spirit.”


What is a contrite heart?


 It is certainly not walking in false humility, with the attitude of, “look at me how repentant and spiritual I am”.  That is a disgusting, religious spirit and is a stench before the Lord.  Self-flagellation is the spirit of “all of our righteousness is as filthy rags”.   It is not walking around in sack, cloth and ashes.


If one studies “contrition”, then we can sink into centuries of theological debates with Godly men and women splitting hairs over their doctrines (gasp).  I do not study and explore theological doctrines, because I am taught by the Holy Spirit and have found my way to the heart of the father through Faith.


The Catholic Church teaches that perfect contrition has for its motive, The Love of God.  I like that!


Isaiah 57:15: “For thus says the high and lofty One that inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.”


‘TO REVIVE THE HEART OF THE CONTRITE”!!!  Now that has a ring to it!!!!

To quote an old gospel song, “I get a witness”.


Before exploring Isaiah 57, I think we should consider the antonym for “contrite” which is remorseless, unapologetic, and unrepentant.


Isaiah 56: 9-12 and Isaiah 57 is an oracle against national leaders.  The national leaders were for the most part lazy, self-seeking and avaricious.  Many of the common people were guilty of apostasy and idolatry. 


The flock of Judah can freely be raided because the prophets who ought to be giving warning are blind and mute.  The politicians are the drunken leaders.  They are greedy dogs (strong of soul; strong of appetite) which can never have enough.  They all look to their own way, every one for his gain.  Come ye, say they, I will fetch wine, and we will fill ourselves (our own lusts) with strong drink and tomorrow shall be as this day.


God promises his help to the humble and penitent to the exclusion of the wicked.  God complained about the general apathy toward the fate of the righteous.


As this is Memorial Day Weekend, I want to say that it is my belief that the killing of the four Americans in Benghazi will become a perpetual historical marker of the failure of political leaders to fulfill their call to duty.  Because of the failure of these blind politicians and drunken leaders, righteous and honorable men perished and do perish, while none lay it to heart.


Isa. 57:1:  The righteous perish, and no may lays it to heart; and merciful men are taken away, none consider that the righteous is taken away from the evil to come.”


Just as the people yielded to the evil influences of such leaders, so are the people in the United States guilty for yielding to the sons of the sorceress.  Draw near here, you sons of the sorceress, the seed of the adulterer and the prostitute.  Against whom do you sport yourselves? Against whom make you a wide mouth, and draw out the tongue? Are you not children of transgression, a seed of falsehood (lying spirits).  Enflaming (burning with lust) yourselves with idols under every green tree, slaying the children (abortion, sex trafficking, pedophiles) in the valleys under the clefts of the rocks”


(Vs. 6) The smooth stones represent that which is slippery and deceptive.


(Vs. 7) “Upon a lofty and high mountain (the kingdom of self and pride).


(Vs. 8) “Behind the doors also and the posts (things done in secret and hiding) have you set up your remembrance; for you have uncovered yourself to another (Islam) than Me, and have gone up; you have enlarged your bed, and made a covenant with them (Islam); you loved their bed where you saw it.  (You made your bed with them).


(Vs.9-11) “You went to the king with ointment, and did increase your perfumes, and did send your messengers far off, and did debase yourself even to hell.  You are wearied in the greatness of your way; yet said you not, there is no hope; you have found the life of your hand; therefore you were not grieved.  Of whom have you been afraid or feared, that you have lied, and have not remembered Me., nor laid it to your heart? Have not I held My peace even of old, and you fear Me not?


Vs. 12-13: “I will declare your righteousness, and your works; for they shall not profit you.  When you cry, let your companies deliver you; but the wind shall carry them all away, vanity shall take them; but he that puts his trust in Me shall possess the land, and shall inherit My holy mountain”.


All of God’s promises are of no avail apart from forsaking evil ways and practicing acts of righteousness.


Sin has been exalted and manifest, and judgment is to be conspicuous and complete.


57: 15:  For thus says the high and lofty One that inhabits eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and Holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.”


The devout can dwell with their God, since His eternal dwelling is not only in heaven above, but also in lowly hearts whose only motive for contrition is the Love of God.


David found this grace of a “contrite heart”.  In Psalm 51 David’s first cry was for pardon, then purity, for cleansing of heart, and renewal of Spirit.  Then the prayer goes on to seek for the things which follow such cleansing; maintenance of fellowship, and consciousness of the joy of the Lord.  Looking on in hope, the song anticipates the service of thanksgiving and praise which will issue from such pardon and purity.  Saul was neither a murderer nor adulterer; yet David was a man after God’s heart, because he knew how to repent.


 Romans 2:4: “Do you despise the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?”


Man and God dwell together in His high and Holy place because of the blood sacrifice of Jesus.  Without that mediator, we would all be dead in our trespasses and sin.  Like those who are arrogant, unrepentant, remorseless, and unapologetic described in Isaiah 57, we would debase ourselves even to Hell.


Our spirits soar into that high and Holy place because we are free from condemnation.  When we realize like David, that we are exalted with Him and will be like Jesus in his high and holy place, we can’t help but be humbled and broken before Him, with unspeakable joy of His great goodness.


  That my friends is my conclusion as to the place of grace of that “state of being ---contrite”.


Carolyn Sissom, Pastor

Eastgate Ministries, Inc.

Scripture from K.J.V.

During my "quest" to discover what the Lord was speaking to me concerning being "contrite", I discovered on the internet a sermon by Bro. Ed ducote, A Contrite Heart,  I did not quote from Bro. Ed, but read and studied his sermon several times.  I was greatly blessed by Bro. Ed's contrite heart and testimony.


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