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The Watchman

by on May 18, 2015

Ezekiel 3

The watchman

17 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore hear a word from My mouth, and give them warning from Me:

 

God called Ezekiel to warn His people

Charge #1 – 18 “When I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand.
19 “Yet, if you warn the wicked, and he does not turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul.

 

When the wicked are allowed to go unchecked they begin to infect even the righteous. Thus God charges Ezekiel to call the righteous who are turning in the wrong direction, to turn back to God.

Charge #2 – 20 “Again, when a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and I lay a stumbling block before him, he shall die; because you did not give him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; but his blood I will require at your hand.
21 “Nevertheless if you warn the righteous man that the righteous should not sin, and he does not sin, he shall surely live because he took warning; also you will have
delivered your soul.”

 

The situation can become so dire that God does not even warn the wicked.

Obedience to The Word of God – 22 Then the hand of the LORD was upon me there, and He said to me, “Arise, go out into the plain, and there I shall talk with you.”
23 So I arose and went out into the plain, and behold, the glory of the LORD stood there, like the glory which I saw by the River Chebar; and I fell on my face.

 

Enter, the Holy Spirit.

Directed by the Spirit – 24 Then the Spirit entered me and set me on my feet, and spoke with me and said to me: “Go, shut yourself inside your house.

 

The people will refuse to listen and to obey.

They are rebellious – 25 But you, O son of man, behold, they shall put bands on you and shall bind you with them, and you shall not go out among them.
26 And I will make your tongue cling to the roof of your mouth, so that you shall be dumb and shall not be one who warns them. For they are a rebellious house.

 

Prophets only speak when ordered by God to speak.

27 But when I speak with you, I will open your mouth, and you shall say to them, So says the Lord God: He who hears, let him hear; and he who stops his ears, let him stop; for they are a rebellious house.

 

It is easy to always choose the texts we like and ignore and avoid the “hard sayings of Scripture.”

God calls and charges prophets to warn the people. When people get rebellious it spills over to the righteous. God then has to charge the prophets to also warn the righteous who are being led astray by those who are rebellious.

Rebelliousness is essentially pride. The people think they know better than God. Rebellion is as evil as witchcraft.

The people to whom Ezekiel was called to speak eventually had idols of the heart. Their idolatry and rejection of God had moved into their hearts. When people refuse to hear the voice of God through His word or through His prophets, they eventually find reasons to defend their disobedience as if it were obedience

Why do disobedient people get defensive instead of repenting? Because they are rebellious. That is what God says. God first told Ezekiel to warn the people. God then decided against warning them through the voice of the prophet. The rebellion of the people closed the mouth of the prophet. The people did not hear from God.

Who is speaking for God today? Are you called to speak and live for the living God? So often the prophets are the ones accused of being rebellious because they call the systems to account. That is sad commentary on the religious systems. It is no different today than it was in Ezekiel’s day. If God has called you to speak, speak. Speak the truth of God as God calls you.

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