Summary: Today, just as there was in Isaiah’s day, there is a need for the people of God to assume the role of watchman.

Isaiah 21:6-10


Pastor Allan Kircher

Shell Point Baptist Church

Intro: The year/689 BC/world/in turmoil.

• Babylonian Empire/under attack/Assyrian Empire.

All of the nations in that area hoped that Babylon would be able to defeat the Assyrian aggressors to their north.

• However, it was not to be!

• Babylon fell to the Assyrians and everyone knew they would not be stopped until the entire region was under their domination.

Against this backdrop of war and a certain attack upon the nation of Israel, God commands the prophet Isaiah to assume the role of a watchman.

Isaiah is to look to the prophetic future and tell the people what he sees approaching.

This is just what Isaiah does in out text.

This message might have been given nearly 2,700 years ago, but it is as timely as today’s headlines.

War rages in our world today.

• People/losing/lives/thousands/terrorist attacks

• Freak natural disasters and the horrors of war.

On another level, the tsunami of sin in our world is rising.

Old convictions and standards are being swept away right before our very eyes.

The winds of change are blowing all around us and fearful things are just over the horizon.

Today, just as there was in Isaiah’s day, there is a need for the people of God to assume the role of watchman.

There is a need for us to take our stand, look at that which is approaching and open our mouths and sound the warning.

I would like to take this passage and preach around the question that is voiced in verse 11: “Watchman, what of the night?”

As I read this passage, I understand that we are living in dangerous days.

We are living in days when the enemies of the Lord and the Enemy of the soul, Satan, would love nothing more than to overrun or lives and our churches.

The enemy’s desire is to see our ministries, our families and our churches dashed upon the rocks of failure.

If we are to avoid that end, then we need to consider the work of the ancient watchman and understand the truth that his ministry is needed as much today as it ever was.

Let me share three facts that this passage gives us concerning the watchman.

You listen to the voice of the Lord as I try to preach on the thought: Watchman, What Of The Night?


(Ill. In ancient times, those who lived in walled cities were considered blessed individuals.

By being inside a city with walls, they had 2 forms of protection.

• One was the wall itself.

• Stood/barrier between/citizens/their enemies.

• Stood/barrier between that which was acceptable and that which was not.

• The wall was a formidable barrier to trouble.

• City/Jericho/ancient city that placed great value in the defensive nature of its vast, thick walls, Josh. 6:1.

Second form/protection those in walled cities possessed was the watchman.

• He/mentioned/text/he was essential to the proper function of the wall.

He stood upon that wall and kept watch over the surrounding countryside.

When invading armies or other dangers came into his view, he sounded the warning and those inside the wall knew to prepare.

Both the watchman and the wall were essential to the survival of the city itself.

Without the watchman, those inside the wall were blind and without the wall, the watchman would have been unnecessary.

Verse 6 points out the two-fold duty of the ancient watchman.

A. He Was To Watch – The most important duty of the watchman was for him to watch!

• He/stood in the towers

• or upon the wall

• his eyes was to scan the countryside for any signs of trouble.

• From his high and lofty perch

• he could see the glistening of armor, sword and spear;

• he could see the banners of war as they waved;

• He could see the clouds of dust raised by the drumming of thousands of feet upon the desert sands.

He was to be in his place, with his eyes open. He was to watch!

B. He Was To Warn

• Whether he saw anything approaching or not

• He was/give report to the people within the walls when they asked him of conditions outside.

When trouble arose in the distance, he was to lift up his voice and sound the warning so that the people within the walls could prepare themselves and so that those who lived outside the city could run in and find refuge.

This same thought is seen in Isa. 58:1, where the prophet Isaiah is told to “Shout it aloud, do not hold back. Raise your voice like a trumpet. Declare to my people their rebellion and to the house of Jacob their sins.”

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