This is an amazing image, one which we will try to spiritualize in this post.
This shoal of fish acts as one unit. They are highly sensitive to each other’s movements and this capability allows them to move in the same direction at the same time. When a predator attacks, they sense the intruder, and their tactile sensors allows the shoal to avoid immediate contact with it.
The body of Christ should act in a similar way. We need to be highly in tune with each other and with sound doctrine in order to sense false teachers and prophets who bring in heretical teaching or sin.
We need to identify and isolate such intruders and avoid mingling in their teachings in the same way the shoal attempts to avoid the sharks.
Essentially every New Testament writer gives us warnings with respect to this issue.
2 Peter 2:1-2 “But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed.”
Romans 16:17-18 “I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive.”
Matthew 7:15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.”
Any teaching or prophecy that is against Scripture must be rejected, and the false teacher or prophet must be avoided.
image credit - Marine Life Center (FB)