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. When I say to the wicked, ‘You wicked person, you will surely die,’ and you do not speak out to dissuade them from their ways, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. But if you do warn the wicked person to turn from their ways and they do not do so, they will die for their sin, though you yourself will be saved.Ezekiel 33:7-9 NIV
Ezekiel was a prophet of God to Israel during the early days of their exile to Babylon. The passage here is a description of what he had been called to do as a prophet. He was a watchman. A watchman was essentially a lookout posted on a cities walls, looking for any approaching danger. It was their responsibility to warn the rest of the city of the danger that was coming. Their responsibility was to deliver the warning. It was the responsibility of those warned to respond appropriately to the warning.
Being a Watchman
I am not Ezekiel. Nor am I a prophet called to do what he did. But I do believe that this message here is appropriate for every believer. We have a responsibility to warn the people around us of the disaster that will overtake them if they do not heed the warning and turn to the Lord. Some believers have been called and equipped as evangelists, boldly proclaiming the good news. Most of us have been called and equipped in other areas of service within the body of Christ. But I do believe that regardless of our calling, we have a responsibility to warn those who are closest to us. And to share with them the love of God and the good news of Jesus.