How do marching bands stay in step with each other? Most are synchronized to the music. They pivot and turn based on specific notes in the song.
There are some bands, however, that are directed solely by the whistle of the drum major. They scoot when they hear the toot. Texas A&M University has such a band.
They met on the gridiron to play Rice University that day. Rice is a school long on scholars and short on skills. They were accustomed to losing and compensated by messing with their opponents.
The Rice band stood on the sideline at halftime to watch the Aggie band do their drill. They soon pulled out their own whistles and with devious glee they randomly blew them hoping to confuse the Aggie marchers.
It worked! The band was twisting and turning and going every which way. Tubas and trumpets clashed, and flutes were flattened.
An airplane took pictures from above. The band looked like someone had stepped on their anthill.
How funny! But did you know that a similar scenario is at work in the church today?
2 Peter 1:20-21 says, “No prophecy of scripture ever comes about by the prophet’s own imagination, for no prophecy was ever borne of human impulse; rather, men carried along by the Holy Spirit spoke from God.”
Peter tells us that Scripture originated with God. It isn’t the result of some imaginative con man, or an impulsive attention getter. It came from God and was entrusted to men who recorded it under the sovereign direction of the Holy Spirit.
Scripture is the drum major’s whistle – the one that the Christian must heed. It is true and trustworthy. It is the means by which we experience freedom. The truth sets us free from spiritual bondage for sure. But it also creates freedom in our finances and our interpersonal relationships and brings blessing to most every area of life to which it is applied.
But there are rascals out there who stand on the sidelines with competing whistles.. Peter described them saying, “…false teachers will infiltrate your midst with destructive heresies, even to the point of denying the Master who bought them. As a result, they will bring swift destruction on themselves. And many will follow their debauched lifestyles. Because of these false teachers, the way of truth will be slandered. And in their greed, they will exploit you with deceptive words.” (2 Peter 2:2-3)
Peter wrote his letter in 67 A.D. but it seems like he had today in mind. He predicted that the future would bring false teachers who will be motivated to confuse and deceive us. They will infiltrate our circles and we will become comfortable with them. They will be known by their weaknesses for sex and money.
But the most significant telltale trait has to do with Jesus. They will “deny the Master that bought them” says Peter. They will minimize the significance of Jesus and the value of His work on the cross.
Probe Ministries conducted a survey of 3,000 people in 2020. They discovered that more than 60% of those between 18 and 39, who identify as born-again Christians believe that Jesus, Buddha, and Muhammad are all equal as Saviors. (https://probe.org/probe-religious-views-study-2020-do-christians-believe-in-christ-as-the-only-savior-of-the-world/)
They see Jesus as no different than any other religious figure. And yet Jesus Himself said, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” – John 14:6
How could this misunderstanding happen? Because only 5% of that same born-again group has a biblical worldview according to the survey.
The Scripture holds little authority for them. They are not tuned in to the whistle of the drum major and are therefore easily misled by the random whistles of others.
Peter used the word “destructive” twice, emphasizing what will become of the church, or the family or the person that moves to those kinds of whistles.
What about you? Are you in formation or wandering about on the ant hill?
A PRAYER: Lord help me to know Your Word well enough to instantly apply it to every life situation.
This has been Jim Johnson and pickleheavenpress.com.
May the Lord Jesus Christ be with you.
Scripture references are from the NETBible ®