God has heaven as His throne and earth as His footstool (Isaiah 66:1).. When we really look at it, what can we give Him? He needs nothing (Acts17:25). How foolish it is for man to neglect or reject that which God desires and then offer Him something of our own choosing. But what can we possibly offer to God. Just what does He want? “For all those things My hand has made, and all those things exist, says the Lord. ‘But on this one will I look: On him who is poor in spirit and of a contrite spirit, and who trembles at My word’ ” (ISaiah 66:2).
God wants an individual who is poor in spirit (Isa. 66:2). We must recognize our own unworthiness before God. The person who can do this is one who sees himself as God sees him. This can only come by looking into the spiritual mirror (Jas. 1:22-25). Now, many times we will not look because we do not like what we know we will see. So it is easier to just ignore our spiritual condition. However, ignoring a problem does not make the problem go away. It takes a mature individual to be able to look at the miserable reflection in the mirror with no one to blame but self. We must strive to see ourselves as God sees us.
God also wants an individual who is contrite in heart (Isa. 66:2). The word contrite means broken down, penitent, deeply sorrowful because of displeasing God. The contrite heart is one in which natural pride and self-sufficiency have been completely humbled. Notice poor in heart precedes the contrite heart because of sin. Only those in a position to objectively approach the mirror will be affected by what they see. How can we know if our heart is contrite? We can know the heart by our actions, words, and conscious thoughts. A contrite heart will express itself. When we see people with an overtly rebellious life, what do we know about their heart? We know it rebellious. When we see people with an overt disregard for divine authority we do not have to wonder about their heart. The contrite heart is one that grieves at sin. As wrong as the Corinthians were, they wanted to be right thus they repented (2 Cor. 7:10). Sometimes people say, “I want to be right” and think that is enough. The Corinthians prove that if one wants to be right, one can be right.
God wants an individual who trembles at His word (Isa. 66:2). Trembling at the word of God is the next and automatic step for one who is poor in spirit and contrite of heart. This manifests an attitude that is aware of guilt and deep apprehension of the consequences of remaining in sin. We are never helped until we admit our guilt. People who tremble at the word recognize that one day we will be judged by the word. Such an attitude must lead us to hear and do what God says.
The question is, “Are we what God would want us to be?” While this does not give specific instruction about how to become right it does express the necessary attitudes to learn what we must do to be right. In the book of Acts on one occasion 3,000 who were poor in spirit, contrite in heart and trembled at the word, sought and found God’s will. Without these attitudes we will not even begin to seek much less find God’s will.
By Rickie Jenkins