(If you would like to receive Pastor Harris’ weekly sermons via e-mail, Click Here)
(To download the powerpoint file for this sermon, Click here)
Pastor Scott L. Harris
Grace Bible Church, NY
January 3, 2010
Description of False Teachers
2 Peter 2:10-22
This morning we are going to resume our study of 2 Peter and the emphasis that book makes about the importance of the truth in how we live our lives. (See: Introduction to 2 Peter) We live in a time and place in which truth is under relentless attack in multiple areas of life. While it has been long understood that politicians will stretch the truth by downplaying their weaknesses and exaggerating their promises, many are now brazen in their lies. The examples of this on the national level in just the last year are so numerous that there is no reason to believe anything said in their effort to push bills through the House or Senate. Can people who do not even keep their own rules be trusted with anything?
Science has taken another hard hit from those who claim to be the only true scientists but whose actions prove they are excellent at marketing, bluster, arm twisting, and politics, but have yet to learn the scientific method. Evolutionists still hyperventilate at the mere suggestion Darwin was wrong and become apoplectic when the facts are presented proving Darwinian evolution is a farce. The global warming / climate change industry has been exposed to be the fraud it has always been with the release of the e-mails from the University of East Anglia showing the conspiracy and collusion within the movement to suppress, manipulate and even destroy data contrary to their hypothesis.
As disturbing as these are, the corresponding complicity of the major media to promote the fraud and hide the truth is worse. The major news media is as well trained as anyone on Madison Avenue in how to manipulate information to market the product, or in this case their ideologies. For these politicians, “scientists” and news reporters, what does the truth matter as long as what they desired is accomplished in the end?
The importance of truth also very clearly seen in the continuing abortion vs. right to life debate. In just a few weeks we will be marking the anniversary of the infamous Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision in which the right to life of the unborn child was revoked by legally defining the baby in utero as something other than human life. The unborn baby could now be legally killed at what in all practical purposes is the whim of the mother since the clause “life and health” has been interpreted to be nearly anything from minor medical concerns to emotional stress to financial difficulty. Truth matters little to abortion advocates. The medical facts are simple enough. 1) The “fetus” is a unique human being living within the womb of its mother. 2) Premature babies as early as 22 weeks can survive and thrive with modern medical care. The earliest is a girl, Amelia, who was born at 19 weeks. 3) There is no known medical condition that might threaten the life of a mother that a D & X abortion would solve. Yet, abortion advocates are so committed to their culture of death that they become unglued at any restrictions placed upon abortion procedures.
By the way, for all the bluster in the U.S. Senate that there would not be Federal funding of abortion, the bill passed Christmas Eve will require a charge of at least $1 per month on every health policy for funding of abortions. I have serious doubts the Stupak amendment forbidding federal financing of abortion passed in the House will survive the conference committee. We will be putting in the bulletin information on the Annual Walk for Life in Washington D.C. as it becomes available.
Abortion advocates present themselves as being “pro choice,” but they are firmly opposed to actual choice. The mother & the father of that unborn child made a series of “choices.” They decided to go out with each other. They decided what to do while together. They decided to have sexual intercourse. The consequence of all their “choices” was the creation of a third distinct human being for which they are responsible. Abortion advocates want all responsibilities and choices removed except being able to manipulate the mother to kill the baby. They do not want any information given to the mother about the development of the baby in the womb or the medical and emotional risks brought on by abortion. They also do not want anyone other than themselves and the mother involved in any choice. They particularly want to exclude the influence of the father and the parents of an underage girl. The so called “pro-choice” position is built upon fallacies and outright lies. But this should not surprise us in a nation in which only 34% of the people believe in absolute moral truth according to the latest Barna Research release.
Barna’s report has some other very disturbing information regarding the assault on truth. In the section dealing with faith, spirituality and Christianity, the report concludes, “The purpose of faith, for most Americans, is not so much to discover truth or to relate to a loving, praiseworthy deity as it is to become happy, successful, comfortable and secure.” That is a scary thought. For most of our society, both truth and the quest to know the Creator takes a back seat to personal fulfillment. With that in mind, it is no wonder that the next section of the report reveals that 71% of those responding say they will develop their own slate of religious beliefs, and those beliefs are increasingly hybrids of faiths that mix even divergent theological perspectives. That in turn explains why only 19% of those claiming to be born again actually have a Biblical worldview, and only half of self-identified Christians believe that the Bible is totally accurate in its principles, much less believe it is factually accurate.
It is no wonder that Americans are increasingly susceptible to embrace false religions and humanistic philosophies and that professing Christians are increasingly susceptible to cults. That is the reason for our study of 2 Peter. We need to know what is true and what is false and how to recognize the difference between the two.
Marks of Godliness – 2 Peter 1
The first chapter of 2 Peter gives us several of the characteristics of true godliness which can then be used as a comparison to identify the false. The first marks are found in verses 1-4. (See: Power for Living) True godliness has its origin in God and He has granted by His own power all we need pertaining to life and godliness. The means to accesses and apply this power is through the true knowledge of God for it is in God’s revelation of Himself that we find His precious and magnificent promises. These in turn enable us to escape the corruption of the lusts of this world and be partakers of His divine nature in becoming like Christ. This does not mean that we are passive in this process. In fact, the second characteristic described in verses 5-7 show we must be very active in the pursuit of godliness.
Peter explains we are to diligently apply moral excellence to our faith, knowledge to our moral excellence, self-control to our knowledge, perseverance to our self-control, godliness to our perseverance, brotherly kindness to our godliness ,and love to our brotherly kindness. These qualities of faith, moral excellence, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, brotherly kindness and love keep us from stumbling and allow us to be fruitful in our walk with Jesus Christ. (See: Steps to Maturity)
A third characteristic is found in verse 16-21. Peter points out his own confidence in knowing the truth because he along with James and John were eyewitnesses of God the Father commending Jesus on the Mount of Transfiguration saying, “This is My beloved Son with whom I am well-pleased.” We in turn have a greater confidence to know the truth because of their faithful witness to the things concerning Jesus and having God’s word written down in the Scriptures which came not by any act of human will, but through men moved by the Holy Spirit who then spoke from God. Godly people follow what God has revealed in the Bible. (See: Assurance of Salvation and Remembering What You Know)
We could summarize this saying that those who are true before God are marked by living in the power of God, strive to continually develop characteristics of godliness, and having confidence in the truth of God’s word submit themselves to it.
Identifying False Teachers – 2 Peter 2:1-10
Those who are false are marked by very different characteristics. In 2 Peter 2:1-10 the apostle tells us that “there will be false teachers among you.” We must be aware that there will be those who will make false claims to be true and righteous as well as teachers of the way of Jesus Christ. They will in fact be deceivers and liars. We must be able to protect ourselves and those around us from these false teachers, but how can you do that?
The first step is to recognize some of their characteristics so that you can identify them. We learned some of the characteristics of false teachers in our study of 2 Peter 1-10 back in October. By way of review, here are some of those characteristics:
Heresy, vs. 1: Their doctrine / teachings are unsound, untrue. They teach their own opinions and musings instead of the truth of God. Those heresies are destructive to all who will follow them.
Excess, vs. 2 ,10: They lead others into living in unbridled sensuality with verse 10 adding that some indulge the flesh in its corrupt desires. Paul tells us that the flesh and spirit are at war with each other and that you cannot walk in the spirit and the flesh at the same time (Galatians 5:16). These people side with the flesh, but strive to present it as somehow being spiritual.
Blasphemy, vs. 2, 10: They revile the way of truth with some openly despising authority. They hold truth in contempt because they believe their own thoughts to be superior to and more important than what God says. Their own opinions replace God’s word.
Exploitation , vs 3: Their greed will cause them to use their followers for their own gain. The will “merchandise” them for their own benefit. Sadly, their followers usually do not recognize it and eagerly sign up to be exploited.
In our study of 2 Peter 2:4-10 we also saw that the judgement of these false teachers is sure. Peter points out as proof the judgement that has come upon fallen angels, the judgement that came upon the pre-deluvian world of Noah which was destroyed by the flood, and the judgement of fire and brimstone that fell on Sodom and Gomorrah. Even if we do not see God’s hand moving against these false teachers visibly in the present, we can be sure that God is moving and will punish them in His own timing bringing them to full account on the day of judgement.
At the same time, we also saw that God will protect the righteous and rescue the godly from temptation. Those who are quick to obey will be like Noah who was preserved in the midst of all the destruction around him. Those who are slow to obey will be like Lot who was protected only because God snatched him out of the way before destruction fell.
Additional Characteristics of False Teachers– 2 Peter 2:11-22
In today’s passage, Peter explains more about these false teachers and what they are like. Peter gets personal and calls them: daring, self-willed, unreasoning animals, stains and blemishes, accursed children, springs without water and mists driven by the wind. Let’s look at each of these in detail.
- Daring, Self willed. – 2 Peter 2:10b-11.
Peter states in verse 9 that God knows how “to keep the unrighteous under punishment for the day of judgment.” Peter then adds in verse 10, and especially those who indulge the flesh in [its] corrupt desires and despise authority. Daring, self-willed, they do not tremble when they revile angelic majesties”
Some of these false teachers will be so arrogant that they consider themselves be the authority and so despise true and proper authority. They become daring with little or no proper fear. Their pride leads them to such boastful arrogance that they do not even tremble or shake when they deal with entities more powerful than themselves. The text literally says that they do not tremble to “blaspheme” (i.e. scoff at, revile, belittle, make fun of, etc.) “glories.” Verse 11 identifies these “glories” by contrasting the behavior of the false teachers to that of the angels.
Peter says, “whereas angels who are greater in might and power do not bring a reviling judgment against them before the Lord.” Jude 9 gives us an example of this stating, “Yet Michael the archangel, when he disputed with the devil and argued over the body of Moses, did not dare pronounce against him a railing judgment, but said, ‘The Lord rebuke you.'”
Angels are greater in strength and power than men. Angels are creatures which were specifically created to serve God. Yet, even angels will not do what these false teachers will do. They will not make their own judgments against Satan and demons. Angels are humble and recognize that judgment is up to God and not them. But false teachers do not follow the example of the angels. They will make statements against Satan and demonic forces which they should not be making. I have heard the foolishness of false teachers in this area in two different ways.
First, are those who dismiss the reality that there is a devil or that demonic forces are at work. Only 27% of Americans are confident Satan exists, and only 40% of self-identified Christians believe spiritual forces such as angels and demons can influence people (Barna, 2009) though both the Old and New Testament state that clearly. Daniel 10 exposes the battle between angels and demons on a national level . We often find Jesus confronting demonic forces in the gospel accounts. In Matthew 4 Jesus is even directly tempted by the devil. Paul states very clearly in Ephesians 6 that our battle is “not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” Despite the evidence and this clear teaching there are plenty of people foolish enough to fall for these lies and scoff. Satan and demons are real beings, not cartoon characters with horns, pointed tails and carrying pitchforks.
Second, there are those that take the exact opposite approach. They recognize that the devil and demons exist, but they ignore what kind of beings they are. These false teachers will rant and rave and claim power over Satan and demons. They demand that those evil beings obey what they say. It is common for them to blame Satan for every bad thing and think a demon is responsible for it. They hold so called “deliverance” meetings so they can cast out the demons causing the problems. They claim addictions to drugs, alcohol or smoking can be cured by casting out the demons. They teach that physical healing for medical problems will take place if the demon causing it is cast out. Some claim that unsocial behaviors will go away if you can get rid of the demons of anger, stubbornness, pride, etc. The strangest claim I have heard was someone trying to cast out the demon of halitosis – bad breath. I wish I was kidding. The problem here is not so much that demons might have an influence on medical conditions and behaviors, for they did in the time of Christ, but it is the ungodly manner in which they approach it that Peter is citing.
The foolish Jewish exorcists in Acts 19 are an example of the problem. They thought they could cast out demons by using the name of Jesus as a magical charm. Acts 19:13-16 states, “some of the Jewish exorcists, who went from place to place, attempted to name over those who had the evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, ‘I adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preaches.’ And seven sons of one Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this, And the evil spirit answered and said, ‘I recognize Jesus, and I know about Paul, but who are you?’ And the man, in whom was the evil spirit, leaped on them and subdued all of them and overpowered them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.”
James 4:7 commands us “to submit to God, resist the Devil and he will flee from you.” The Bible does not say to “attack the devil and you will overpower him.” Satan and his demons are not beings to be played around with. We need not fear him for Scripture also says that “greater is He that is in you than He who is in the world” (1 John 4:4), but it is the Holy Spirit that is greater, not we ourselves. We neither belittle nor command the devil or his demon host. We gain victory over Satan by submitting to God and being obedient to Him for that is resisting the devil. We do not gain victory by trying to excuse our sins as caused by demons and then trying to gain victory by commanding the devil to go out.
- Unreasoning Animals– 2 Peter 2:12
It is no wonder that Peter calls them “unreasoning animals” in verse 12 stating, “But these, like unreasoning animals, born as creatures of instinct to be captured and killed, reviling where they have no knowledge, will in the destruction of those creatures also be destroyed.” These false teachers are like animals that just rely on their own instinct. The result is they blaspheme, revile, accuse, criticize, scoff at and belittle things of which they are ignorant. So it is that just as animals of this nature are destroyed, so too shall these false teachers will be destroyed.
Verse 13 goes on to say of them, “suffering wrong as the wages of doing wrong.” Or put in another way, they are cheated of the profits of their wrong doing as a result of their wrong doing. They end up not being able to enjoy the fruits of their wrong deeds for they end up being exploited themselves. In this example, they end up having demonic problems because they do not deal with demons correctly.
- Stains & Blemishes– 2 Peter 2:13-14
Peter continues, “They count it a pleasure to revel in the daytime. They are stains and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions, as they carouse with you, 14 having eyes full of adultery and that never cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having a heart trained in greed, accursed children.”
In 1987 the party at the PTL Club, which was supposed to be a God honoring Christian ministry, came to a crashing close with the revelation of Jim Bakker’s adulterous interlude with Jessica Hahn, Tammy Fae’s struggle with drug dependency, and the exposure of their personal finances. They had multi-million dollar homes, luxury cars, clothes, and jewelry while telling their viewers how much they had personally sacrificed for the “ministry” of PTL Club. Jim Bakker was eventually imprisoned for embezzling millions of dollars for his personal use.
Many thought the fall of the Bakker’s was a sudden tragedy, but the doctrine they espoused should have tipped everyone off years before. The characteristics of a false teacher were evident in his doctrine, message and manner of life long before His blatant sins of adultery and greed were exposed. The same continues to be true today. The list of such false teachers on what is supposed to be “Christian” television and radio is long. The number of false teachers with influence limited to a local area or even to just one church is even longer. Many have not publically fallen yet, but their doctrine, message and life stile reveal what they really are even if it has not been publically exposed yet. Their greed and roving eyes can even be fairly blatant, but people overlook it for a variety of reasons.
The fall into such blatant sins by leaders that are supposed to be Christians are stains and blemishes upon the message of Jesus Christ and the whole Christian community. The severity of the negative impression they leave upon unbelievers and the discouragement they cause to young believers varies with how well known they are, but the damage whether local, regional, national or international in scope is always tragic. Unbelievers justify themselves for not becoming Christians and immature believers stumble in sin because of their example.
- Accursed Children– 2 Peter 2:14-15
Peter appropriately calls these false teachers, “accursed children” at the end of verse 14, and gives further explanation in verse 15 & 16 of their actions and motives. “forsaking the right way they have gone astray, having followed the way of Balaam, the [son] of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness, 16 but he received a rebuke for his own transgression; [for] a dumb donkey, speaking with a voice of a man, restrained the madness of the prophet.”
False teachers follow in the footsteps of Balaam. His story is told in Numbers 22-24. Balak, the king of Moab, has just seen the children of Israel under Moses’ command wipe out the Amorites. He is afraid that he could be next, so he decides to deal with the situation by trying to hire a prophet of God to curse the children of Israel. He figures that if that happens, then God will not be with them and Moab will be safe. King Balak sends for Balaam the prophet and tries to do this, but God restricts Balaam to say only what God wants said. However, Balaam really wants the money being offered. In one of the attempts, Balak sends for Balaam, but Balaam says he cannot come until he prays about it. God tells Balaam that night to go up to Balak if the men call upon him again. However, Balaam wants the reward money and does not wait for the men to come again. He just saddles his donkey and gets going (Numbers 22:20,21). It is during this trip to see King Balak that God uses Balaam’s donkey to finally get his attention. Can you imagine someone so intent on doing what they want that God has to make a donkey talk in order to get his attention? But more astounding than Balaam’s donkey talking to Balaam is that Balaam continued the conversation without a pause and talked right back with the donkey! As the passage ends, Balaam pronounces a blessing on Israel instead of the curse King Balak wanted. If that was the end of the story, then Balaam would only have been a prophet that had to endure a strong rebuke by God. But according to Numbers 31:16, Balaam still earned his money from King Balak by telling how to cause Israel’s downfall by enticing them into sin. King Balak followed the advice with the result that Israel did sin and the Lord sent a plague which in one day killed 23,000 and 1,000 more were executed for their sin.
This is the same way false teachers operate. They have forsaken the right way which is the “narrow way that leads to life” (Matthew 7:14) so that they can pursue their own way. That is why they wander. If they cannot get what they really want one way, they will find another way to get it. The greed of these false teachers continually finds new ways to exploit their followers. The sad part is that so many people fall for it, but why? Because like the Israelites that sinned with the Moabite women in Numbers 31, they were exploited with an enticement of something that fit their own sinful desires.
- Springs without Water, Mists driven by a Storm- 2 Peter 2:17
Peter uses two more very descriptive metaphors in verse 17 to describe these people. “They are Springs without water, and mists driven by a storm.”
Imagine being in a desert with a parched throat. Your goal is to find water. You finally see a spring ahead and so you become excited. Water is near, but when you get to the spring, you collapse and become very depressed, because the spring is dry.
Imagine being in a land that is experiencing a drought. You desperately need rain. Your crops are drying up. Your well is going dry. Finally, you see big, tall clouds on the horizon. A storm is coming! It gets closer and closer. You can feel the wind coming off it. It finally arrives, but it is just wind and clouds. No rain, just some mist driven by the wind.
That is what false teachers are like. They give a promise of just what you think you need. But when it really comes down to it, there is nothing there. False teachers cause great excitement, but they bring nothing of substance. Think about the healing and deliverance services of some of these people. There is excitement about the possibility of being healed, but it turns out to be a game and a ruse. You go home in the same condition except now you’re also depressed. Have you noticed that these “faith healers” twist the Scriptures to make the healing dependent on your faith so that when you are not healed it is your fault. That was the experience of Joni Earikson Tada in trying to find healing for her paralysis among the “faith healers”
Peter says that “black darkness has been reserved” for these false teachers. Why? Because God is light and these have gone another way into the darkness, and they are leading others into the same condition.
How? 2 Peter 2:18 explains, they “speak out arrogant words of vanity.” They sound authoritative like they know what they are talking about, but in reality their words are empty. In addition, they “entice by fleshly desires, by sensuality.” They know what works to get people to follow them by exploiting the lusts they know reside in heart of mankind.
And what people will follow them? “those who barely escape from the ones who live in error.” Or, a little more accurately, “those who are just beginning to escape.” These are people who are just starting to understand the truths of Christianity. They are just starting to recognize the error of the world and their own sinful ways, but they are sucked right back into it by the false spirituality of these heretics.
These false teachers promise freedom, yet are themselves slaves of corruption, because regardless of what a man claims, it is still true that “by what a man is overcome, by this he is enslaved.” Paul put it this way in Romans 6:16, “Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness.” These false teachers promise you freedom from your problems, yet they themselves have yet to even gain freedom from sin and its consequences upon themselves.
At this point Peter makes some conclusions concerning these false teachers
Conclusions– 2 Peter 2:20-22
“For if after they have escaped the defilements of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and are overcome, the last state has become worse for them than the first. For it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn away from the holy commandment delivered to them.”
The thought here is simple. Peter already said in verse 1 that these false teachers have known the truth. The problem is not ignorance, but that they have turned from Jesus Christ and gone back to the things of this world. This being true, it would have been better for them to never have known the truth. Why? Because now they are apostates. Having had the truth and rejecting it they will remain condemned in their sin. Why? Because knowledge of Christ can cause the ignorant to repent, but nothing can be done for those who have known the truth and rejected it.
Are the false teachers described here saved? No. Neither are those who follow their example in present times. These are those of whom Jesus speaks in Matthew 7:21 declaring, “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven; but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day. “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.”
False prophets eventually reveal their true identity just as the proverbial statements in verse 22 declares. “It has happened to them according to the true proverb, “A dog returns to its own vomit,” and, “A sow, after washing, [returns] to wallowing in the mire.” The point of both proverbs is that the evil nature of these false teachers remains. The dog got rid of some of its internal impurities, but it soon returned to consume them again. The pig cleaned itself up from its external impurities, but it soon was wallowing in filth again. So it is with false teachers.
Beware of false teachers for they will come and they are even now all around us. You only need to turn on your radio, TV, go to any bookstore, or look on the internet and you will find them.
You are their target and they know what it takes to entice you into sin. The “unstable,” referring to those not yet grounded in the Word of God or not having on their spiritual armor as described in Ephesians 6 are the most susceptible. Do you have your armor on? Can you defend yourself against a false prophet? Could you recognize a half truth or a lie if you heard it? Peter said in 1:12 that his desire was to “establish them in the truth.” That is my desire too, but unless you are into the word yourself to understand and believe it you will not be established.
If you need help in reading, studying, memorizing or meditating on God’s word, we can help. Just talk with me or any or our church leaders and we can get you started so that you will not fall victim to false teachers.
Sermon Notes- 1/3/2010
Description of False Teachers – 2 Peter 2
We live in a time and place where __________ is under relentless attack – politics, “science,” news media, abortion
Only___________ of the people believe in absolute moral truth
Even “faith” is pursued by most in order to be happy, successful and secure rather than because of ______________
______of respondents pursue a hybrid of religious beliefs even mixing together divergent theological perspectives
Only_________ of self proclaimed “born-again” believers actually have a Biblical worldview.
Marks of Godliness– 2 Peter 1
Vs. 1-4: God’s promises are ___________ to enable us to escape the lusts of this world and be like Christ
Vs. 5-7: We must also be diligent to develop godly characteristics which make us ____________ for Christ
Vs. 16-21: We have confidence because of the _____________ of God’s word He has given through the prophets.
Identifying False Teachers – 2 Peter 2:1-10
There will be ____________ teachers among us, so we must be able to recognize them and defend ourselves.
*___________ -They teach their own opinions and musings instead of the truth of God.
*____________-They lead others into living in unbridled sensuality
*_____________- They revile the way of truth with some openly despising authority
*Exploitation – Their ____________ will cause them to use their followers for their own gain
Their ___________ is sure as God’s judgement on fallen angels, the antediluvian world & Sodom and Gomorrah
__________ protects the righteous and rescues them as He did Noah and Lot.
Additional Characteristics of False Teachers- 2 Peter 2:11-22
Daring, Self willed. – 2 Peter 2:10b-11.
Their _____________ leads them to boastful arrogance that does not even tremble before angelic beings
Some dismiss the reality of Satan and demons. Only _________of American are confident Satan exists
Only _________ of self-identified Christians believe angels and demons can influence people
Others blame Satan & demons for all of man’s sinful actions and believe they can cast them ____at will
An example of foolish exorcists – ___________
Unreasoning Animals- 2 Peter 2:12-13
Stains & Blemishes – 2 Peter 2:13-14
False teachers are evident by their ______, message & manner of life long before exposed by public sin
Their blatant __________ stain and blemish the message of Jesus and the whole Christian community.
Accursed Children – 2 Peter 2:14-15
Numbers 22-24. Balaam was ____________ by the offer of reward by King Balak
God uses Balaam’s ______________ to rebuke him.
Balaam would not curse Israel directly, but his ______counsel resulted in the sin of Peor (Numbers 31:16)
False teachers can usually satisfy their greed by enticing people according to their own sinful ________
Springs without Water, Mists driven by a Storm – 2 Peter 2:17-18
They promise what you think you need, but there is ________ substance or fulfillment in the end.
They lead people ___________ by their arrogance and vanity and entice with sensuality.
False teachers promise freedom, but are ____________ of corruption themselves (Romans 6)
Conclusions– 2 Peter 2:19-22
The problem is not ignorance of the truth, but _____________ of it resulting in apostasy.
The judgment for false teachers is ____________ – Matthew 7:21f
The evil nature of false teachers ____________ and will reveal itself sooner or later.
Parents, you are responsible to apply God’s Word to your children’s lives. Here is some help. Young Children – draw a picture about something you hear during the sermon. Explain your picture(s) to your parents at lunch. Older Children – 1) Write down all the verses mentioned. 2) Count how many times the word “teacher” is mentioned. 3) Talk with your parents about the differences between those who teach the truth and those who teach what is not true.
THINK ABOUT IT!
Questions to consider in discussing the sermon with others. How have you seen the truth attacked in the following areas: Politics, science, news media, education, history, social issues. What is the motive for suppressing the truth and replacing it with misinformation, falsehoods and lies. What do you think of the survey result that only 34% of the people believe in absolute moral truth? What dangers does this bring? What can be done to overturn it? What is dangerous about pursuing faith based on seeking happiness, success and security instead of truth and worshiping the Creator? What are some of the reasons so few professing Christians (just 19%) have a Biblical worldview? What is necessary to develop a Biblical worldview? How would you define godliness? What evidence would you look for in determining if someone was godly or not? How does 2 Peter 1 help you define godliness? Peter tells us that there will be false teachers among us. Why does God allow that to happen? 2 Peter 2:1-3 gives the following characteristics of false teachers: of it: Heretical, excessive, blasphemous, exploitive. Explain each and give an example of each that you have seen. What will happen to false teachers? How does God protect the righteous? 2 Peter 2:10-22 give additional characteristics of false teachers. Give examples of some that indulge the flesh and despise authority. How do false teachers dealings with demons demonstrate daring and self-will? Why is this bad? How do angels deal with demons? How should a Christian deal with demonic forces? Peter calls false teachers “unreasoning animals.” In what ways do false teachers display the characteristics of such animals? What will happen to them? In what ways are false teachers stains and blemishes? What damage do they cause because of this? Give examples. Balaam is given as an example of what Peter means by “accursed children.” How did God rebuke Balaam? What eventually happened to Balaam and why? Why are the phrases, “springs without water” and “mists driven by a storm” good descriptions of false teachers? Explain. How do false teachers attract their followers? How do they get them to accept being exploited? How do you determine who the master is of a slave? Why is it better to be ignorant of God than to be an apostate? According to Jesus’ statements in Matthew 7 about false teachers, they can be self-deceived about their actual spiritual condition. How is that possible? What is the meaning of the two proverbial statements in 2 Peter 2:22? Why does that apply to false teachers?
(If you would like to receive Pastor Harris’ weekly sermons via e-mail, Click Here)
For comments, please e-mail Church office