Summary: To encourage the church to be the watchmen God has called us to be
THE PARABLE OF THE SANDWICH SIGN by George Crumbly
Sunday AM July 1, 2001
(This story was taken from a chapter in Max Lucado’s book "A Gentle Thunder" a very interesting story.)
One of the most important jobs you & I have as Christians? To WARN the wicked, to WARN those that are living in sin. You see, today there are only two ways the bible speaks of that we will travel they are:
1.) Down the road of destruction that leads to Hell or
2.) Down the road of life that leads to Heaven.
Today I ask you which road are you traveling down?
Ezekiel 3: verse 17
It is our duty as Christians to WARN the wicked. Do we even care that people are dying every day and heading to a burning Hell?
The Lord led me to use this story today, I used it several years ago when I was pastoring in Alabama, I enjoyed preaching it and I ran across the book a couple of weeks ago.
The story begins by explaining the only way into town, or the easiest way into town is to cross a big long bridge. On this night in particular after a long rain storm part of the bridge was washed away. There is a lot of traffic that crosses this bridge to come into town. On this night after the bridge washed away there were many cars that were traveling this road that wound up plunging into the deep water. Many people died because there was no WARNINGS about this terrible wash out.
Three men stood with the mayor of this town telling him "The rains have washed away the bridge during the night and many cars have driven over the edge into the deep water, what can we do? The mayor said to the three men "You must stand on the side of the road and WARN drivers not to make a left turn, telling them to take the one lane road that follows the side of the river." One of the men yelled out "But they drive so fast! How can we WARN them?" The mayor then explained to them "By wearing sandwich signs." Then he produced three wooden double-signs, hinged together to hang from ones shoulder. He explained that the three men were to go and stand at the crossroads so drivers could see these signs and be saved from the washed out bridge.
(NOTE: You will need 3 small signs that you can set up in the pulpit for the congregation to see each with it’s own wording: "Bridge Out", "Reduce Speed" and "Take Right Road.")
The mayor then handed each man a sandwich sign. The first man took his sign and it read:
He left and headed up to the bridge this caused him to feel good about being able to help folks in need actually saving them from their death. The second man said "Perhaps I should be next so I can help the drivers to slow down. His sign read:
"Good idea" agreed the third man, "I will stand over here at the curve so people will get off of the wide road and go onto the narrow road." His sign read:
"TAKE RIGHT ROAD"
So the three men went to the bridge and stood with their signs ready to WARN the travelers of the washed out bridge. AS the cars were approaching the bridge the first man stood out so the travelers could read "BRIDGE OUT", then the second man would make gestures with his hands pointing to his sign telling the travelers to "REDUCE SPEED".
As the motorist began to comply they would see the third sign as it read "RIGHT ROAD ONLY". Although the road was narrow, the cars complied and they were safe. Because of this hundreds of lives were saved by the three sign holders. BECAUSE THEY DID THEIR JOB MANY PEOPLE WERE KEPT FROM PERIL!!
Because these men did what they were called to do lives were saved. sounds like the church today doesn’t it? We desperately need to be about the Father’s business doing the job that He has called us to do so that souls will be saved.
You and I are like Watchmen, it is our responsibility to WARN the wicked. It is our task to deliver the message faithfully. What they do with the message once they receive it is their responsibility not ours. We can’t make folks do right all we can do is WARN them.
But like the world today, folks grow weary, tired, burnt out, the "new" wears off, maybe the "glory" of the job is gone or the thrill is over, whatever it is it happens way too much today.