In the previous chapter we discussed the subject of studying the Word of God. But we talked about that subject with regard to what your study can do for you
. We have another important reason to study, and that is so we can be knowledgeable enough to present the Word to others in the hopes of helping them to gain salvation.
It is no small matter that we should devote much time to teaching others. In Ezekiel 3:18 God warns: "When I say to the wicked, "'You shall surely die,' and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand." The blood of the wicked God will require at your hand!
I don't think we spend nearly enough time thinking about that verse and its ramifications. We know that we have friends, neighbors, acquaintances--yes, even family members--who are in a lost condition. Are we trying to warn them? Or are we sitting back and thinking, "I don't curse. I don't smoke. I don't drink. I don't lie. Hey, I'm a pretty good person; I'm going to heaven"? But are we--if we do not warn the wicked? God says their blood will be required at our hands.
We are to be followers of Christ, who went about preaching to others. Not only did He preach to others, but He lay down His life for the salvation of others. I am firmly convinced that if we do not do the same we will never make it to heaven. No, I do not mean we have to die on a cross. But I mean that our lives must be lived in service to others.