Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Warning, 2of3

~ Warning To All Individuals ~

There are at least three great warning chapters in Scripture.  Interesting enough they all are double digit chapters ending in three (making it easy to memorize them (Jeremiah 23, Ezekiel 33, and Matthew 23).  We are briefly summarizing these three chapters in this series.

Ezekiel 33 Summary  ~  There are several ways of summarizing this chapter and its warnings.  One way—which is often missed—is the inclusion of individual responsibility before God in addition to national responsibility.

side note:  In the Old Testament we find Israel as God’s witness (singular) on earth.  In the New Testament all Christians are His witnesses (plural). 

God adds a new principle of individuals being responsible before God in contrast to a main focus of national sin and consequences.  Therefore you, O son of man, say to the house of Israel: ‘Thus you say, “If our transgressions and our sins lie upon us, and we pine away in them, how can we then live?”’  Say to them: ‘As I live,’ says the Lord God, ‘I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live.  Turn, turn from your evil ways!  For why should you die, O house of Israel?’” (verses 10-11).  Now the door is open wide for individual responsibility, individual repentance, and individual judgment.  Another way of saying it is that the thirty-third chapter of Ezekiel provides the principles of God’s dealings in the last days—holding individuals accountable before God. 

Ezekiel 33 Scripture Portion  ~  Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, ‘Son of man, speak to the children of your people, and say to them: “When I bring the sword upon a land, and the people of the land take a man from their territory and make him their watchman, when he sees the sword coming upon the land, if he blows the trumpet and warns the people, then whoever hears the sound of the trumpet and does not take warning, if the sword comes and takes him away, his blood shall be on his own head.  He heard the sound of the trumpet, but did not take warning; his blood shall be upon himself.  But he who takes warning will save his life.  But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, and the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at the watchman's hand.”  So you, son of man: I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore you shall hear a word from My mouth and warn them for Me.  When I say to the wicked, “O wicked man, you shall surely die!” and you do not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand.  Nevertheless if you warn the wicked to turn from his way, and he does not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul’” (verses 1-9). 

closing note:  The warnings of Ezekiel 33 are well worth personal study by each of my readers. 

~ Robert Lloyd Russell, ABUNDANT LIFE NOW

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