I Kings 18:21 “Elijah came near to all the people and said, ‘How long will you hesitate between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal, follow him.’ But the people did not answer him a word.”
Joshua 24:14-15 “‘Now therefore, fear the LORD and serve Him in sincerity and truth; and put away the gods which your fathers served beyond the River in Egypt, and serve the LORD. If it is disagreeable in your sight to serve the LORD, choose for yourselves today whom you will serve: whether the gods which your fathers served which were beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.’”
At airports around the world there is a device called a windsock. You will find this simple piece of equipment at the top of a pole at the approach end of each runway. The purpose of the device is to give the immediate wind direction and speed to the pilots as they make their final approach, information that is important when executing a landing. The windsock by design shifts in whichever direction the wind is blowing, and varies its extension based upon the wind speed. You and I know people like that as well.
Both Joshua’s challenge to the Hebrew nation before entering the Promised Land and Elijah’s similar challenge to the kingdom of Israel almost 600 years later carry a note of similarity. Neither encourages nor expects a blind following of God – both lay down the challenge to take a look at the evidence and make one’s decision. However both men in their own way take a bold and uncompromising stance in their own devotion to Him – they discovered the truth and dedicated themselves to following it. That is the way it should be – look at the unbiased evidence, make your decision, and live it! Both men left no room for riding the fence, for bouncing between one opinion and the other, or for being a windsock.
This call is just as valid today. I often wonder how long the church of God in America will keep acting like a windsock and reflecting the latest wind of doctrine. How long will we waver between two points of view – between the standards, principles and philosophies of our culture and those of God? When will we stop making choices based upon whatever seems to be most comfortable or convenient in the moment? How long will we dance with two partners? The problem is we tend to make these decisions almost subconsciously. We make choices, and we are not even aware that we took the easy road over the more correct or more truthful one. Will we ever gain back our heart of courage, our spirit of conviction, and our intellect that is not afraid to think critically? Will our country ever see Joshua’s and Elijah’s again? Are you willing to be one?
We have allowed apathy and complacency to reign in our spirits in place of spiritual courage, wisdom, and commitment. We have a decision to make – follow culture, or follow Christ? Act like a windsock, or act upon His word? We must make a conscious choice and deliberate decision – we cannot respond like the nation of Israel did to Elijah, when they “did not answer him a word.” I beg you … discern the truth … and then live it!