On my trip to Israel 6 years ago, we visited a village in Nazareth which is set up to show us what it looked like when Jesus lived there.
A watchman was placed high on the hill overlooking the village and the land surrounding it.
Ezekiel explains the watchman’s duties in his 33rd chapter. He says the watchman needs to blow the trumpet to warn the people when he sees danger coming. If he blows the trumpet and the people don’t heed the warning, they are responsible for their own deaths.
BUT, if the watchman sees the danger coming and doesn’t blow the trumpet, the watchman is responsible for their deaths.
What does this mean for us today?
We don’t have watchmen……or, do we?
When I read this, God reminds me that I am a watchman for the people he has placed in my world. I know the truth. And I know the danger of not accepting salvation through Jesus Christ. So I must say something. I cannot be silent.
I wish it was as easy as sounding the trumpet. It’s much harder today to warn others of danger coming their way. Our culture is more independent than that of the Israelites and many people don’t understand that God still holds us accountable for each other. Those of us who know the truth need to share it with others. Those of us that know the danger of not accepting God’s free gift of salvation need to talk to the people around us about the Gospel that sets us free – eternally free.
So how do I make sure I’m fulfilling my responsibility as a watchman? I have a great role model in Jesus who used equal measures of grace and truth. He didn’t judge people (except for the religious leaders who should have known better). He didn’t condemn people who didn’t believe he was the Son of God. He communicated truth with love every chance he got. He communicated in ways that the people around him could listen. And understand. And avoid the danger.
Thank you, dear Jesus. Please help me do the same.