“Son of man, I have appointed you as a watchman for Israel. Whenever you receive a message from me, warn people immediately. If I warn the wicked, saying, ‘You are under the penalty of death,’ but you fail to deliver the warning, they will die in their sins. And I will hold you responsible for their deaths. If you warn them and they refuse to repent and keep on sinning, they will die in their sins. But you will have saved yourself because you obeyed me. If righteous people turn away from their righteous behavior and ignore the obstacles I put in their way, they will die. And if you do not warn them, they will die in their sins. None of their righteous acts will be remembered, and I will hold you responsible for their deaths. But if you warn righteous people not to sin and they listen to you and do not sin, they will live, and you will have saved yourself, too” (Ezekiel 3:17-21, NLT).
God commissioned Ezekiel to conduct a twofold prophetic ministry–warn the wicked to repent and warn the righteous not to sin. Ezekiel was called to be both an evangelist and a pastor.
God told Ezekiel that he was appointed to be a “watchman for Israel.” The watchman was a lookout for the community and was responsible for providing advance warning of approaching enemies so that the people could take refuge in time.
God assigned Ezekiel a difficult task to perform with an awesome responsibility–the blood of those he failed to warn (to repent or not to sin) would be on his head if he remained silent. While God issued a stern warning to Ezekiel about the consequences he could suffer if he failed to speak His message, what God wanted from Ezekiel was his obedience to His calling.
So, what’s actually important to God is not how many people you win to the Lord but how obedient your are to His calling. The measure of your success in God’s Kingdom is not necessarily how well you perform in life but how obedient you are to God.
And, God can especially use obedient people to accomplish His plans and purposes!
I want you to show love, not offer sacrifices. I want you to know me more than I want burnt offerings (Hosea 6:6, NLT)