Sometimes, it will be necessary for you to deliver what would be considered, unpopular news. At times you will find yourself in a situation where you have no other alternative but to deliver news to certain individuals that they don’t want to hear. As a Christian, we are commanded to tell people, thus saith the Lord, whether they want to hear it or not.
And he said unto me, Son of man, stand upon thy feet, and I will speak unto thee. And the spirit entered into me when he spake unto me, and set me upon my feet, that I heard him that spake unto me. And he said unto me, Son of man, I send thee to the children of Israel, to a rebellious nation that hath rebelled against me: they and their fathers have transgressed against me, even unto this very day. For they are impudent children and stiffhearted. I do send thee unto them; and thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the LORD God. And they, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear, (for they are a rebellious house,) yet shall know that there hath been a prophet among them. And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house. And thou shalt speak my words unto them, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear: for they are most rebellious. But thou, son of man, hear what I say unto thee; Be not thou rebellious like that rebellious house: open thy mouth, and eat that I give thee. And when I looked, behold, an hand was sent unto me; and, lo, a roll of a book was therein; And he spread it before me; and it was written within and without: and there was written therein lamentations, and mourning, and woe. – Ezekiel 2:1-10
Ezekiel was called to a rebellious nation
And he said unto me, Son of man, I send thee to the children of Israel, to a rebellious nation that hath rebelled against me: they and their fathers have transgressed against me, even unto this very day. - Ezekiel 2:3
Ezekiel was called to minister to people who have rebelled against God. We too have been called to witness and minister to a nation that has rebelled against God:
For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen. – Romans 1:18-25
We live in a nation that has rebelled against God in every way imaginable. This nation has done it’s level best to remove God from society. They have removed the Bible and prayer from the public schools, They have tried to turn the truth of God into a lie, by attacking the word of God, night and day. Claiming that the Bible is just a bunch of fairy tales that have no basis or proof. This couldn’t be further from the truth, but they don’t care about the truth.
We have turned rebellion into a desirable thing. The “good guys” in our books and movies are most often the rebels.
For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from being king. – 1 Samuel 15:23
Ezekiel was called to a nation that was shameless (Impudent)
For they are impudent children and stiffhearted. I do send thee unto them; and thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the LORD God. – Ezekiel 2:3-4
People aren’t even ashamed of doing wrong anymore. Everything has been turned upside down in today’s society. They have made Christians ashamed to stand for truth, instead of them being ashamed of the things that they used to only do in secret. Now they march up and down our streets, and on our television sets, and on billboards up and down the interstates, advertising the things that they should be ashamed.
Ezekiel was called to nation that was stubborn (Stiffhearted)
People today are not willing to be moved. They won’t even tolerate a different opinion from their own. If you don’t accept the opinions that they have, you will be labelled as intolerant and/or hateful, but at the same time, they will not tolerate a biblical worldview. They cry foul and claim that it’s offensive. People have convinced themselves that they have the constitutional right to not be offended.
A Prophet Among Us
And they, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear, (for they are a rebellious house,) yet shall know that there hath been a prophet among them. – Ezekiel 2:5
A prophet is someone who tells of future events, someone who explains or communicates those events. A prophet is someone who is illuminated, inspired or instructed by God. All Christians fall into this category, not just the Preacher. As a Christian and as a Bible believer, you know of some future events that you should share with others. You know that Jesus is returning (John 14:1-3), you know that faith in Jesus is the only way to have your sins forgiven:
- John 14:6
- Ephesians 2:8-9
- Titus 3:5-6
Three Fundamentals for the Christian
The Christian is charged by the Spirit
And the spirit entered into me when he spake unto me, and set me upon my feet, that I heard him that spake unto me. – Ezekiel 2:2
The first thing that you need to realize is that you must be connected to the power source, The Holy Spirit:
There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the law could not do, in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh: That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit. For they that are after the flesh do mind the things of the flesh; but they that are after the Spirit the things of the Spirit. For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be. So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. – Romans 8:1-9
You can’t stand without the power of the Spirit:
As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. And when I saw it, I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spake. And he said unto me, Son of man, stand upon thy feet, and I will speak unto thee. And the spirit entered into me when he spake unto me, and set me upon my feet, that I heard him that spake unto me. – Ezekiel 1:28 – 2:2
What do you stand for? You have to stand for something, or you will fall for anything:
- Stand in the faith (1 Corinthians 16:13)
- Stand in one spirit (Philippians 1:27)
- Stand for the Book (2 Thessalonians 2:15)
The Christian is commissioned for the work
But thou, son of man, hear what I say unto thee; Be not thou rebellious like that rebellious house: open thy mouth, and eat that I give thee. – Ezekiel 2:8
As a Christian, you have been commissioned to be a witness for the Lord. We are to be witnesses for Christ everywhere that we go, and in any situation that we find ourselves in:
But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. – Acts 1:8But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; But sanctify the LORD God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: - 1 Peter 3:14-15
Remember, that you have been called into service by God, not by man:
Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;) – Galatians 1:1
God has called you for a purpose. That purpose is to deliver the message that God gives you to deliver, regardless of how you expect the recipient of that message to respond:
And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house. And thou shalt speak my words unto them, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear: for they are most rebellious. But thou, son of man, hear what I say unto thee; Be not thou rebellious like that rebellious house: open thy mouth, and eat that I give thee. – Ezekiel 2:6-8
We are commanded to deliver the message; the response is up to the hearer. The Lord has made it clear that if we don’t deliver the message that he gives us to deliver, we will be held responsible. But if we do deliver the message as we are commanded the responsibility falls to the recipient:
Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me. When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul. Again, When a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumblingblock before him, he shall die: because thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand. Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also thou hast delivered thy soul. – Ezekiel 3:17-21
The Christian has been commissioned to deliver the whole counsel of God. The Christian does not get to pick and choose which parts of the message that they deliver. Don’t fall into the same trap that Balaam fell into:
And Balaam said unto God, Balak the son of Zippor, king of Moab, hath sent unto me, saying, Behold, there is a people come out of Egypt, which covereth the face of the earth: come now, curse me them; peradventure I shall be able to overcome them and drive them out. And God said unto Balaam, Thou shalt not go with them; thou shalt not curse the people: for they are blessed. – Numbers 22:10-12
Balaam received a three-part message from God:
- Don’t Go
- Don’t Curse
- Israel is a blessed nation
Balaam only delivered part of the message that he received from God. He only told the men that he couldn’t go. He left out the other two parts of the message:
And Balaam rose up in the morning, and said unto the princes of Balak, Get you into your land: for the LORD refuseth to give me leave to go with you. – Numbers 22:13
He only delivered a portion of the message to leave himself some options. Balaam was more concerned with pleasing men than with pleasing God
Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry. – 2 Timothy 4:2-5
The Christian is commanded to be courageous in the face of difficulty
And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house. – Ezekiel 2:6But in all things approving ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in afflictions, in necessities, in distresses, In stripes, in imprisonments, in tumults, in labours, in watchings, in fastings; By pureness, by knowledge, by longsuffering, by kindness, by the Holy Ghost, by love unfeigned, By the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armour of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, By honour and dishonour, by evil report and good report: as deceivers, and yet true; As unknown, and yet well known; as dying, and, behold, we live; as chastened, and not killed; As sorrowful, yet alway rejoicing; as poor, yet making many rich; as having nothing, and yet possessing all things. – 2 Corinthians 6:4-10
As a Christian, you need to prepare yourself for the difficult times. We are commanded to be courageous in the midst of these difficult times. The Bible teaches us over and over again, that the world is against you, that the world will give you trouble, and that if you live right, you will suffer for doing so.
These things I command you, that ye love one another. If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. 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. – John 15:18-19These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. – John 16:33Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution. – 2 Timothy 3:12
Don’t be concerned about what the world thinks about you. The world is the enemy (1 John 2:15-17), instead, concern yourself with what the Lord wants.
Ask yourself, do the people that I interact with know that there has been A Prophet Among Them?
Our hope at Irvington Bible Baptist Church is that this podcast provided some encouragement and has helped you to develop a closer relationship with the LORD Jesus Christ.