Just watch out

OPENING PRAYER

Lord, help me not believe the lie that giving comfort is always what it means to show love.

 

Read: EZEKIEL 3:16-27

[16] At the end of seven days the word of the LORD came to me: [17] “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. [18] When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. [19] But if you do warn the wicked person and they do not turn from their wickedness or from their evil ways, they will die for their sin; but you will have saved yourself. [20] “Again, when a righteous person turns from their righteousness and does evil, and I put a stumbling block before them, they will die. Since you did not warn them, they will die for their sin. The righteous things that person did will not be remembered, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. [21] But if you do warn the righteous person not to sin and they do not sin, they will surely live because they took warning, and you will have saved yourself.” [22] The hand of the LORD was on me there, and he said to me, “Get up and go out to the plain, and there I will speak to you.” [23] So I got up and went out to the plain. And the glory of the LORD was standing there, like the glory I had seen by the Kebar River, and I fell facedown. [24] Then the Spirit came into me and raised me to my feet. He spoke to me and said: “Go, shut yourself inside your house. [25] And you, son of man, they will tie with ropes; you will be bound so that you cannot go out among the people. [26] I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you will be silent and unable to rebuke them, for they are a rebellious people.[27] But when I speak to you, I will open your mouth and you shall say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says.’ Whoever will listen let them listen, and whoever will refuse let them refuse; for they are a rebellious people.

 

Reflect: WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BE A “WATCHMAN”?

I am sure that none of us wants to be a “wet blanket,” spoiling everyone’s fun and casting a pall over proceedings. That would be a strange kind of Christian witness and would hardly commend the Gospel or draw people to Jesus. But in public ministry, to which Ezekiel was called, there has to be an honest call that sin not be brushed under the carpet and the holiness of God’s requirements remain central. Thank God for those who have the courage to stand for truth and to speak “as a dying man to dying men.” Only the Ezekiels of this world are entitled to thunder, and he would pay the price for it (25). We may not be “thunderers,” but at the same time we must resist the temptation to stay silent when an opportunity comes our way. We may be the only ones who can put in a word for the Lord at just the right time and in just the right way. Our words may be clumsy and we may feel embarrassed, but God will honor us. Silence is not always golden.

 

APPLY

Speak the truth in the situations in your life where sin is being brushed under the carpet.

 

CLOSING PRAYER

Help me, Lord, to rise above my fears and to speak for You and for Your Gospel.

 

Syndicated via Scripture Union
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