Posted by Peter Thompson

II Peter 2:1-3

Look Out for False Teachers

INTRODUCTION:  Peter has been talking about your sure foundation in Jesus Christ and the good things of God that you should add to that faith.  If all that was going on the church and you and your fellow believers were growing in the knowledge and work of God without any distraction it would be great!  But here Peter warns of a problem that will arise.  That problem is false teachers that will come into the midst of growing Christians.  Did you know there are people out there that seek to come into churches and lead them astray?  Those people exist.  Their motives are different but they are all trying to do the same thing.  They want you to follow them instead of God.  Peter marks them here, so that you can look out for them.  We are going to discuss three qualities of these people so that you can look out for them and not allow them to distract you or your fellow believers from growing in the Lord and working for Him.

  2. Peter has just finished talking about the prophets that had spoken as the Holy Spirit of God moved them
  3. Those men were reliable
  4. They got their message from God
  5. The things they said were true
  6. If a person followed their words, they led straight to Jesus
  7. But he said even in those days there were false prophets among the people
  8. Those prophets claimed to speak for God
  9. But they really only spoke for themselves
  10. They were not telling the truth and you could not rely on what they said
  11. The people who followed their words were led astray, away from God
  12. He says here, you will have those kind of false teachers among you too
  13. They will “privily bring in damnable heresies”
  14. The word “privily” means that they would do it secretly with deception
  15. Damnable is the word for destruction
  16. And heresies actually has the idea of a party or group of people that taught against the truth
  17. So they were secretly and deceptively bringing in destructive groups of people that did not believe or teach the truth
  18. They would not outright teach a message that was opposed to the truth
  19. The idea here, is that they would bring in to the true message, things that were not true
  20. They would lay those false teachings alongside of the real teaching
  21. And then eventually they would remove the true teaching and all that was left was the false teaching
  22. In that deceitful way people were taught things that were not true
  23. You need to be looking out for people who are trying to do this
  24. Part of the problem with Christians today is that they don’t believe in truly evil people
  25. We believe naively, and you might believe this, that everybody has good intentions and that they are just misunderstood
  26. Or that somehow they were brainwashed into doing the evil that they do
  27. The truth is that there are children of Satan in this world just like there are children of God
  28. And they are not just those people dancing around fires in the dark
  29. They are going around trying to destroy the truth of God
  30. And they target churches, they come into the church with groups of people to destroy the true doctrines of a church
  31. They do it for money, they do it for power, they do it to prove that God does not exist
  32. They do it because they are influenced by Satan and his demons to do so
  33. So you must be on the lookout in your life and in the church
  34. You need to test everything that ever comes out of any human beings mouth with the scriptures
  35. You need to make sure that what they say lines up with what God says
  36. Part of their message may be the honest truth from scripture
  37. But then they lay alongside that truth, lies that lead only to destruction of your life
  38. Destruction of you walk with God
  39. They are going to be sneaky, you won’t see them coming unless you are watching close
  40. Line everything that you are taught on TV, on the radio, at the other churches, or here in your own church, line it up with the Bible, if it doesn’t square up then don’t believe it.
  41. No matter how good it sounds
  42. Be looking out for people that will deceive you into believing falsehood
  44. Peter says that these false prophets will even deny the “Lord that bought them.”
  45. Something that you need to understand is that Jesus Christ died for the sins of the whole world
  46. So that everybody has the opportunity to be saved
  47. When someone believes and accepts Jesus as their master the blood of Jesus is applied and they are saved
  48. So the sins of the whole world have been paid for, all they have to do is accept the gift and they can be saved
  49. So Jesus bought these false teachers, but they denied Him-these false teachers are lost
  50. And their destruction will come
  51. They deny Jesus and the heresies that they bring in will teach others to deny Jesus
  52. Now understand, they are going to do this in a sneaky way
  53. These teachers will not just come right out and say, “I deny Jesus and you should too”
  54. But alongside the teaching of Jesus they will begin to teach things that deny who Jesus is
  55. Without coming out and saying it they deny the fundamental truths about Jesus and His salvation so that Jesus has no affect on the lives of people
  56. They might deny that the Bible is inspired by God-then the story about Jesus may be true or might not be
  57. They might deny the sinfulness of man and say that all men are basically good, which eliminates the need for Jesus at all
  58. They might deny the sacrificial death of Jesus on the cross, saying that Jesus did not really die-If that is true then Jesus did not pay for our sin
  59. They might deny the resurrection of Jesus, sure He died but nobody raises from the grave-then Jesus is not God
  60. They might deny salvation by faith alone, add things like baptism and communion or other works to the equation, which again makes Jesus unnecessary
  61. They might deny the reality of hell and eternal judgment, again eliminating the need for Jesus
  62. They might deny that Jesus was God come to earth, which makes Him a sinner just like us and not a worthy sacrifice
  63. You see, through all of these teachings they deny Jesus without saying so
  64. Peter goes on to say in v. 2 that not only are they going to be destroyed but they are leading others in their “pernicious ways”
  65. The word “pernicious” means destructive
  66. So they are leading others to destruction as well
  67. When churches begin to teach these heresies because they have been led astray
  68. Then the lost people in the world are hearing something that is not the truth
  69. He says the truth is being evil spoken of-it is being trampled by these lies
  70. When the lost people hear and believe these lies, they don’t come to Jesus for their salvation
  71. And those people too will go to hell in their sin
  72. Jesus told the Pharisees one time-“But woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye shut up the kingdom of heaven against men: for ye neither go in yourselves, neither suffer ye them that are entering to go in.” (Matt. 23:13)
  73. Not only were they not going to go to heaven because they denied Jesus
  74. But all the people that listened to them that would have believed cannot go to heaven either
  75. Look out for teachers that deny anything about Jesus and what He did or the necessity of those things that He did
  76. If you believe them, you will be party to the destruction of many people
  77. Never allow doctrine that denies anything about Jesus into your life
  78. Never allow doctrine that denies anything about Jesus in our church
  79. Watch out for these denying false teachers
  1. Peter begins to talk about a motive here
  2. Why would these false teachers want to deceive a person
  3. He says here they are “covetous”
  4. That means that they want to have what others have
  5. They want to get rich and have things
  6. So with “feigned words” they make people “merchandise”
  7. The word “feigned” comes from a Greek word that means to form or mold something
  8. So these words are formed and molded, they are specially crafted words
  9. They specially craft the words that they say in order to make people “merchandise”
  10. Merchandise is what the store puts on its shelves, so that you will go in there and buy it, so that they can make lots of money
  11. These people will mold and form their words so that they say just the right thing to make money off of you
  12. What terrible people that would sacrifice the eternal happiness of people for money in this life
  13. No wonder Peter says, their judgment that was set up a long time ago
  14. Will not linger or wait
  15. And does not slumber or sleep
  16. They will be judged soon, because this thing that they are doing is despicable
  17. Making money while leading people to hell
  18. Look out for teachers that would use your money to make themselves rich under the pretense of being a Bible teacher or preacher
  19. You see this all the time in our day
  20. Send 19.95 to so and so ministries and we will pray that God forgives your sins and heals your body
  21. I looked some of these guys up and watched them so that I could give you some of their exact crafty words
  22. “Harvest only responds to seed, not prayer” one of them said, in other words if you want something to happen you are going to have to give us your seed money, don’t pray to God, give me money is the idea.
  23. “If you don’t pay God you won’t get fed” in other words my talking to your right now is going to cost you something
  24. “Start 2008 by sending us your first fruits offering”-see what they did there, they took a verse out of context and made it mean send us some money
  25. “When you give to God TV you are preaching the gospel”-that’s not true, it sounds great, it eases our conscience if we are not really preaching the gospel but it’s just a ploy to get you to give money
  26. “God will not use what you lost, God will always use what you got left. God says, if you give what you have left, I will give back what you have lost”-that is not always true, nothing in scripture says that he will.  The whole time an 800 number rolling across the bottom of the screen where you can pay with a master card and visa or an American express.
  27. “You say, I didn’t come here to hear about money, I came here because I need some peace, well honey, you’re going to have to get some money or you are never going to have any peace.”-translation, pay me, and you can have peace-the truth is that only a relationship with Jesus Christ can bring you peace
  28. Look out for these crafty people that only want to make you merchandise
  29. All they care about is getting your money
  30. All they care about is getting richer and richer, they have no concern for your soul or your spiritual well being.
  31. Look out for those money hungry preachers and teachers.

CONCLUSION:  Don’t let these false teachers have any part of your life or the life of your fellow believers.  Be looking out always for them.  Taking no teaching for granted.  Always compare teaching to the scriptures.  Look out for those that would deceive you.  Look out for anybody that denies Jesus in any way.  Look out for those who are getting rich from teaching lies.