So you, mortal, I have made a sentinel for the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from my mouth, you shall give them warning from me.” vs. 7Ezekiel 33:7-9
Ezekiel was feeling the pressure of his prophetic role. He had been chosen as a mouthpiece for the Lord, and his major responsibility was to tell the wicked that if they did not change their ways they would surely die. If he didn’t do it, and they didn’t change, their blood would be on him. If however, he did issue the warning, and they didn’t repent, well, then it was on them— he’d done his job. Sometimes we are in a position to offer words of warning to others—we can see clearly that if they continue on their chosen path they’re going to crash and burn. Mostly we don’t like that prophetic role. We like minding our own business and keeping our noses out of the affairs of others. So we often choose silence rather than intervene. The problem is that, if we’re right, and they continue their downward spiral, we’re almost certain to feel guilt. On the other hand if we do offer warnings in a spirit of love, it could be that our words will bring repentance. Then everyone can rejoice! If however they pay no attention, even becoming angry for our interference, we will at least know that we were faithful to our call. Of course that’s little solace when assessing the damages—we would rather they had paid attention. But at least we will have done what we could!
Thought for the Day: How do I know when to speak and when to be silent?