Tag Archives: Ezekiel

Why Being a Watchman Is Serious Business

People in positions of authority are liable if they don’t warn their charges of potential danger

Why Being a Watchman Is Serious BusinessThe thirty-third chapter of Ezekiel opens with some vague references to upcoming danger, a watchman, and heeding the warnings of the watchman. Who is this watchman, we wonder? Could it be an anticipation of Jesus? Or perhaps John the Baptist who will herald the way for Jesus? Maybe it’s you and I. It could be all of the above, yet there is nothing to imply that Ezekiel might be the watchman.

However, in verse seven, God declares that he has indeed made Ezekiel the watchman. I didn’t see that coming. But since most prophecy – perhaps all biblical prophecy – carries multiple perspectives – one for them then and one for us now – the watchman could be any of these other possible options, in addition to Ezekiel.

There are two key things to note about the watchman. First, his duty is to be on the lookout and sound the alarm. It doesn’t matter if the people pay attention or not. Their outcome is on them. The key is that the watchman alerts everyone when he sees danger.

The second key is if the watchman is negligent and fails to warn of the danger he sees. Then he must bear the burden of the deaths of all the people who he failed to warn. The people depended on the watchman to do his job and he failed them.

While we may never find ourselves perched in a tower scanning the horizon for an attacking army, our assignment may be looking for other things. Perhaps our job is one to protect, to watch for dangers be it physical, financial, emotional, or spiritual. Maybe we are in a position of leadership, and those under our care expect us to stand guard to warn them of trouble. This may be for our family, our work, our community, or our church.Be on the lookout and warn people of impending danger. Click To Tweet

We need to be on the lookout and warn people of impending danger. If we fail to sound the alarm, any harm that befalls them rests on us.

Being a watchman is serious business.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is Ezekiel 31-33, and today’s post is on Ezekiel 33:1-7.]

When God Says Enough

Despite God’s longstanding patience giving us time to shape up, judgement will eventually come

When God Says EnoughThe book of Ezekiel is an interesting one, packed with evocative prophetic imagery that portrays God’s power, patience, and eventual judgement. As follows through much of the Old Testament the people disobey God. He warns them to turn things around and is patient, hoping they will avoid the consequences of their wayward actions. He wishes for the best, and the people let him down.

But Ezekiel is confronted with a peculiar response to his messages of impending punishment. Like the boy who cried “wolf,” the people dismiss Ezekiel’s warnings (actually God’s warnings). They say, “Time passes on but these threats never happen.” They stop taking Ezekiel (and God) seriously, which they never fully did to begin with. They feel quite justified in ignoring the word of God because they think there is no downside for disobedience.

To this God says “enough.” He will withhold their punishment no longer and will fulfill all that he said. There will be no more delays.

I wonder how much we today are like these people of old, viewing God’s warnings as meaningless threats that will never happen. Since our wrong behavior receives no immediate punishment, perhaps we’re not so bad after all. Maybe God doesn’t really mean it when he says our wrong actions are sin.

To this I hear God again saying “Enough.”There are consequences for disobeying God, and our time is up. Click To Tweet

There are consequences for disobeying God, and I fear our time is up.

[Read through the Bible with us this year. Today’s reading is Ezekiel 10-12, and today’s post is on Ezekiel 12:21-28.]

Do Ezekiel’s Words in the Bible Apply to Us Today?

Ezekiel was a prophet at a time when the people had little to do with God. God told him what to say and do. Sometimes the Holy Spirit would physically move Ezekiel to show him things.

In Ezekiel 18, God grabbed his prophet by the hair, lifted him up, and brought him to the outer court in Jerusalem and then later to the entrance of the temple. There, at the temple, Ezekiel saw men literally turn their back to God and bow to gods in the east.

God detested what they were doing. By seeking other things to worship, they aroused his anger. So, he ignored them, to “not look on them with pity.” Despite their shouts, God said he would “not listen to them.”

Consider this carefully: In our churches today, do we do things that God detests? Do our actions arouse him to anger? Do we cause God to ignore us?

Certainly, we would say, “no.” But when God seems distant, when he doesn’t listen to our pleas, I wonder if we might be the cause.

[Ezekiel 8:3 and Ezekiel 8:16-18]

[Discover more about the Bible at A Bible A Day.com: Bible FAQs, Bible Dictionary, Books of the Bible Overview, and Bible Reading Plans.]