The Watchman’s Duty

33 Now the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “Son of man, speak to the (A)sons of your people and say to them, ‘If I bring a sword upon a land, and the people of the land take one man from among them and make him their watchman, and he sees the sword coming upon the land and (B)blows the [a]horn and warns the people, then [b]someone who hears the sound of the horn but (C)does not take warning, and a sword comes and takes him away, his (D)blood will be on his own head. He heard the sound of the horn but did not take warning; his blood will be on himself. But had he taken warning, he would have (E)saved his life. But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the horn and the people are not warned, and a sword comes and takes a person from them, he is (F)taken away for his wrongdoing; but I will [c]require his (G)blood from the watchman’s hand.’

“Now as for you, son of man, I have [d](H)appointed you as a watchman for the house of Israel; so you will hear a [e]message from My mouth and give them a (I)warning from Me. When I say to the wicked, ‘You wicked person, you will (J)certainly die,’ and you do not speak to warn the wicked about his way, that wicked person shall die for his wrongdoing, but I will [f]require his blood from your hand. But if you on your part warn a wicked person to turn from his way and he (K)does not turn from his way, he will die for his wrongdoing, but you have (L)saved your life.

10 “Now as for you, son of man, say to the house of Israel, ‘This is what you have [g]said: “Surely our offenses and our sins are upon us, and we are (M)rotting away in them; (N)how then can we [h]survive?”’

Read full chapter


  1. Ezekiel 33:3 Heb shofar; i.e., ram’s horn
  2. Ezekiel 33:4 Lit the one who hears the sound...hears it but
  3. Ezekiel 33:6 I.e., hold the watchman responsible
  4. Ezekiel 33:7 Or given
  5. Ezekiel 33:7 Lit word
  6. Ezekiel 33:8 I.e., hold you responsible
  7. Ezekiel 33:10 Lit said, saying
  8. Ezekiel 33:10 Lit live

Bible Gateway Recommends