Bible Ballistics: Watchmen June 30, 2013 Vol. 2 No.07
Happy Birthday America!! I hope you have a most pleasant and enjoyable 4th of July. In 1787 Scottish professor, Alexander Tyler made the following statement: “A democracy is always temporary in nature; it simply cannot exist as a permanent form of government. A democracy will continue to exist up until the time that voters discover they can vote themselves generous gifts from the public treasury. From that moment on, the majority always votes for the candidates who promise the most benefits from the public treasury, with the result that every democracy will finally collapse doe to loose fiscal policy, which is always followed by a dictatorship.” Sound words, which I think we might be wise to heed.
We have looked at friendship, family and leadership in recent weeks, and I would like to take the time to continue in a related vein and consider the “watchman”, as described in scripture.
We believers, and especially those of us in leadership positions, are called to be “watchmen” to those around us. Ezekiel gives a most precise picture of our responsibility. He also establishes the fact that we aren’t accountable for the responses of others, but we are responsible to proclaim the “warning”. Let’s look at this powerful passage, Ezekiel 33:1-9, “Again the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, 2 Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman: 3 If when he seeth the sword come upon the land, he blow the trumpet, and warn the people; 4 Then whosoever heareth the sound of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head. 5 He heard the sound of the trumpet, and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul. 6 But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman’s hand. 7 So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me. 8 When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. 9 Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.” The thought that I would like to emphasize is in verse 7, “ hear the word at my mouth and warn them from me…..” Our command is directly related to the “WORD AT GOD’S mouth”. I am not called or compelled to share the opinion of men, not even my own, but I am to share HIS WORD!!! ARE WE SOUNDING THE TRUTH? THE WARNING?
Hebrews 4:12-13 tell us, “For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13 Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do.” God’s Word is alive—always at work, when it is read and proclaimed; it is piercing and dividing to the soul of man, and brings life or death depending on our response to it. Deuteronomy 30:19 “I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:” Hebrews 4 also declares that it is God to whom we will give an account and it is HIS WORD which will be the standard. Jesus himself in John 17:8 tells us…” For I have given unto them the words which thou gavest me; and they have received them, and have known surely that I came out from thee, and they have believed that thou didst send me.” Even as we talked some months ago about prayer, and saw that we are instructed to pray “Thy kingdom come….Thy will be done…..”. And Jesus again in the garden, before the cross prayed “…not my will, but thine be done…” ( Lk 22:42). Are we holding ourselves accountable to God and HIS word?
God will accomplish His word in all it’s power and truth. Isaiah 55:11 “So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.”. Just as we see in Hebrews 4, God’s Word is the power of life, the standard of life and the ultimate and final judgment of all men—believers and unbelievers. We are to proclaim God’s word and do His work with all our might relying on God alone. 1 Cor. 3:7 “So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.” And as John the Baptist said in John 3:30 “He must increase, but I must decrease.” Every one of us, as a watchman must have this motive and goal in mind. As we proclaim God’s Word, it must never be for selfish motive or gain, but to be faithful “watchmen” who proclaim the undiluted Word. God is holding me accountable to HIS Word. 1 Corinthians 3:13 reminds us, “Every man’s work shall be made manifest: for the day shall declare it, because it shall be revealed by fire; and the fire shall try every man’s work of what sort it is.” Isaiah 55:8 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.” God is God but we can know Him, as Paul tells us in Philippians 3:9-10 “And be found in him, not having mine own righteousness, which is of the law, but that which is through the faith of Christ, the righteousness which is of God by faith: 10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;” And Jesus own words in John 17:3 “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” We can KNOW God through salvation in Jesus, but when we KNOW HIM we are called to be faithful “Watchmen”. Let’s be faithful watchmen who sound the warning, regardless of the response—THAT IS GOD’S JOB!!! We are living in desperate times with the happenings of recent days– but we are still obligated to sound the warning even if the cost is great. I’ll close with Jesus word’s from John 15:19-21 “If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. 20 Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. 21 But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me.” Stand fast my friends Jesus is coming soon.