Dealing with false teachers

Published 9:18 am Friday, December 22, 2017

Question: Please discuss how God feels about false teachers.
Answer: In 2 Peter 2:1-3, Peter uses harsh words against false teachers. Peter stated that they would bring damnable heresies which would cause those who follow them to bear swift destruction. Peter reminds us that God will reserve those unjust teachers for the future judgment (II Peter 2:4-9). If Peter were living in our world today and made such a statement the world would clamour to repudiate him for such statements. However if we are honest, in view of the scriptures we would have to conclude that Peter was totally justified in his statements.
Peter wrote by inspiration against those false teachers and correctly describes and labels them as depraved individuals. Those whom Peter taught about were not those who had mistakenly taught a false doctrine but were intent on teaching false doctrines. This should be a warning to every supposed teacher in our time.
Peter said that they “walk according to the flesh in the lust of uncleanness” (vs. 10). Many today fit the same mold because many today speak presumptuously without any grounds for the doctrines they teach. Such self-willed teachers will face the wrath of God. Because they act as animals concerning their desires and teachings; Peter labels them as “natural brute beasts” (vs. 12).
We should be cautious as to whom we listen. Peter stated that such false teachers despise the authority of God and deceived and therefore are spotted. In other words they are blemished. The Greek term for blemish describes one who is disgraceful. Their disgrace is because they do not submit to those who have authority over them. We must submit to God and His inspired Word; furthermore we must submit to Elders who have authority (vs.) 13-17).
These false teachers are equated to those who live willful riotous lives. These teachers love to be involved in worldly practices’ and are so involved without shame (vs. 13). With corrupt eyes full of adultery they will not cease their depravities, but lead many others away from God. They, like Balaam, seem to love what they do and have no or little regard for neither their own souls nor the souls of those whom they mislead and destroy (vs. 15-16).
Peter reveals that while these teachers may promise liberty from sin, they are as wells without water or clouds of darkness. In (vs. 14) Peter calls such teachers “cursed teachers.” Such people are self-centered and wholly concerned with fulfilling their own lustful desires.
In (vs. 4-9) Peter reminds us that those ungodly teachers and their non-penitent followers face certain punishment. This should encourage every person who seeks to serve God in spirit and truth (John 4:24) to grow in grace and knowledge (2 Peter 3:18), and to study to show themselves approved (II Timothy 2:15).
We should always listen carefully to those who teach and compare their teachings to the perfect, inerrant, inspired Word of God.
(Tony Hoss is minister at the Centerview Church of Christ, Elizabethton. He can be contacted at (423-737-2287) or by e-mail: (

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