If a person is a frequent enough air traveler they will probably at some point be offered an upgrade in their ticket (or some other perk) in trade for giving up their seat on an overbooked flight. This is a good trade for a person as long as they do not have to be at their destination at a particular time. Trains run at various times in areas that are serviced by rail and it does not really matter which one a person gets on if they have no particular destination which they hope to arrive at. Yet for those who have a particular appointment and a specific destination it is absolutely vital that they be on the proper train or plane and no alternate will do..
We read about a “train” here in Isaiah’s account, which is not at all of the same variety as those upon which men ride from one station to the next. Rather this “train” is speaking of the regal robe of ONE who sits upon a particular throne which is unlike any other. By way of hyperbolae, Isaiah is here speaking of the majesty and grandeur of the ONE who is seated upon the throne which he was privileged to see..
The Hebrew word which is translated here in the KJV as “train”, is also translated in other places as “hem”, particularly that of the High Priest, (see Ex.28:33,34;39:26) and “skirt” particularly relating to the garment which covers one’s “nakedness” or shame (see. Jer.13:22, 26; Lam. 1:9; Nah 3:5).
In very lavish weddings, the amount of money spent on the wedding dress is sometimes manifested in the length and ornate detail of the “train” which is attached to it. Great care is given to see that this “train” is properly spread out, that its beauty might be displayed. One does not expect to see a “train” of this sort in more modest weddings but when the bride is of a station of wealth and pomp then no expense is spared and her “train” bespeaks the dignity which she would seek to put on display.
When Isaiah describes the “train” of the LORD, he says that it “filled the temple”. His description leaves us no doubt as to the absolute glory and majesty of the ONE who sits upon the throne which is said to be “high and lifted up”. The declaration of the Seraphim which surround that throne leave us with no doubt as to who this ONE is and the extent of HIS dominion and reign. “And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.” (Isa 6:3)
Isaiah’s vision was given to him at a particular time. “In the year that King Uzziah died”. Isaiah prophesied for many years yet we have no indication that he was ever privileged to behold such a vision before or after. Thus we see that such revelation is given only by the sovereign prerogative of the ONE who sits upon that throne. Yet such was the nature of this revelation that it would be impossible for him to ever forget it.
Isaiah’s vision was of the same ONE which John saw in the book of the Revelation. (see Rev.3:12-17) “I saw the LORD” There is ONE TRUE GOD, and HE has seen fit to enable us to see HIM only in ONE PERSON. Even as HE said to Philip, “He that hath seen me hath seen the Father.” (John14:9) “No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.” (John 1:18) JESUS CHRIST is indeed the “fullness of the GODHEAD bodily” and in HIM alone can any look upon the face of GOD. “And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)
Isaiah’s vision enabled him to see the LORD in the station where HE is. “high and lifted up”. Though HE did for a season, when HE walked among men, make HIMSELF of no reputation, HE is now forevermore in that place of rightful glory which HE had with the FATHER before the world was and does now occupy forever. “Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Php 2:9-11)
Isaiah’s vision enabled him to see the LORD in the everlasting fulfillment of that work which HE came to perform as the REDEEMER of HIS elect. “HIS train filled the temple.” The redemptive work of CHRIST and HIS office as MEDIATOR and HIGH PRIEST is not an afterthought on HIS part, but is the very reason for which HE created the world. That HE might display the glory of HIS grace in the salvation of a people which HE loved with an everlasting love.
John tells us that in that he saw “that great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God.” (Rev 21:10) This he identified as “the bride, the Lamb's wife.” (Rev 21:9) Is it not fitting that HIS glory fills that “temple”, so much so that he goes on to say, “And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof.” (Rev 21:22-23) This glorious bride, HIS church, receives all of her riches from HIM. Is this not what Paul speaks of to the Ephesians? “And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places, Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.” (Eph 1:19-23)
The salvation of GOD’s people depends solely on the work which CHRIST has seen fit to perform in their behalf. That same salvation is manifested by the work which HE is pleased to perform in them, in delivering them from the power of darkness, by giving them a new birth whereby they are made to repent and believe that which HE has performed. It is therefore a “necessity” that they be brought to see who HE is even as it was a “necessity” for HIM to go through Samaria (see John 4:4) in order to meet with one of HIS lost sheep. “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” (John 6:37)
It is impossible that a man could ever know who HE is without having seen HIM as HE is, “high and lifted up”. The universal desire of every one of the born again sons of GOD is to see the NAME of JESUS CHRIST exalted; to see HIS PERSON magnified and to bow down and worship before HIM. Just as HE identified HIMSELF to the woman at Samaria’s well, “I that speak unto thee am he” (John 4:26); so too does HE visit each one of HIS children and tell them the same.
Not everyone is given as dramatic a vision as Isaiah had, yet everyone of those for whom the LORD has purposed to redeem, HE will gather to HIMSELF, revealing the same glory which HE was pleased to unfold to Isaiah, John, Paul, and the thief on the cross . “For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us.” (2Cor 4:6-7)mam