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Detecting False Teachers


2 Peter 2:1-3

INTRODUCTION: These verses warn Christ-followers to beware of false teachers. Not a single command. We are called to be cautious & careful because misinformation & error are all around us. Nutshell: We must beware of false beliefs, faulty behavior & fake benefits.


I. BEWARE OF FALSE BELIEFS, vs. 1. Jer. 23:16; Isa. 30:9-10; Jude 4; Acts 20:29-30; 1 John 1:8.


II. BEWARE OF FAULTY BEHAVIOR, vs. 2. Wrong beliefs lead to wrong behavior. Matt. 24:11-12. Can spot false teachers by looking at their message and their morals. False teachers invariably cater to the lusts of the flesh.


III. BEWARE OF FAKE BENEFITS, vs. 3-5. 2 common fake benefit methods: dollars and deception.


A. DOLLARS. God warned about prophets & priests who wanted to get wealthy, Jer. 6:13; 1 Thess. 2:5.

B. DECEPTION. “deceptive” = “artificial or fabricated.” 2:18. Matt. 7:5. “destruction” 5 times in chapters 2 and 3. Delay of judgment is not a denial of judgment, Psa. 123:3; 2 Tim. 4:2.


Action Steps: What do we do? How should we respond?

1. Be careful and cautious, 1 John 4:1; Prov. 14:15.

2. Compare everything to Scripture. Bereans, Acts 17:11.

3. Don’t be spiritually sleepy. Rom.13:11-12. 


INVITATION: It’s time to live on mission! If you are regularly gathering with God’s people to hear God’s Word preached, and if you are taking responsibility to grow by reading and studying the Scriptures and if you’re giving back to God what He has given to you and if you are moved to go with the gospel, you will be well situated to spot what is false and to embrace what is true. The best way to spot a counterfeit is to be familiar with the real deal.  


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