Several years ago I read of a terrible accident in which several youth were killed when their car was struck by a train. At the trial the watchman was questioned: "Were you at the crossing the night of the accident?"

"Yes, your Honor."

"Were you waving your lantern to warn of the danger."

"Yes, your Honor," the man told the judge.

But after the trial had ended, the watchman walked away mumbling to himself, "I'm glad they didn't ask me about the light in the lantern, because the light had gone out."

God sees it, when our light has gone out. - Selected [1]

This watchman was found not guilty but he is responsible for the death of the youth that were in the car that were killed by the train. Read what god said to Ezekiel: "After the seven days had passed, the Lord spoke to me. "Mortal man," he said, "I am making you a watchman for the nation of Israel. You will pass on to them the warnings I give you. If I announce that an evil person is going to die but you do not warn him to change his ways so that he can save his life, he will die, still a sinner, and I will hold you responsible for his death. If you do warn an evil man and he doesn't stop sinning, he will die, still a sinner, but your life will be spared. "If a truly good person starts doing evil and I put him in a dangerous situation, he will die if you do not warn him. He will die because of his sins-I will not remember the good he did-and I will hold you responsible for his death. If you do warn a good man not to sin and he listens to you and doesn't sin, he will stay alive, and your life will also be spared." {2]

Christian, you are called by Jesus Christ to be a watchman. Too many Christians believe that if they just live a good life then others will see Jesus Christ in their daily living. That is like the watchman waving his lantern without a light in it. Jesus calls each of us to be his witnesses to this dying world. We are to warn everyone He tells us to warn about what their future might be. This may not be easy. The Greek word for "witness" is "martus" from which we get the English word "martyr". Martyrs are the Christian men and women who have given their lives as witnesses to others for Jesus Christ.

Jesus expects each of us to go make disciples even if it isn't easy for us to do it. He promised He will be with us when we step out in His name. The Holy Spirit will empower us and give us the words to say.

The blood of the youth was on the hands of the railroad watchman. Don't let other peoples' blood be on your hands. Stand up and be the watchman Jesus calls you to be.

By
Dean W. Masters

Unedited redistribution approved.

[1]Tan, P. L. 1996, c1979. Encyclopedia of 7700 illustrations : [a treasury of illustrations, anecdotes, facts and quotations for pastors, teachers and Christian workers]. Bible Communications: Garland TX

[2] American Bible Society. 1992. The Holy Bible : Today's English Version (2nd ed.). American Bible Society: New York