2 Peter 2:1-9 The Characteristics of False Teachers


Intro: When it comes to training our kids – We realize that part of that training is going to involve teaching them to Eat

A)Not How to eat – they figure  out pretty quickly – that food in the fingers can result in gladness in the mouth/ Satisfaction in the tummy


B) We don’t have to teach them how to eat – but what to eat !!!

1)   We want them to realize that if they are going to BE HEALTHY they are going to need to eat certain things


C) They are going to need to have a balanced diet consisting of Fruit / Vegetables / Protein – meats & dairy

1)   We want to teach them that there are certain foods that are important to eat – others that can be consumed in Moderation


D) And that there are some things that you want to AVOID

1)   The bottle in the garage w/ the skull & the Cross bones in a circle w/ a line going thru it is not  a good thing.


So we realize that you need to – feed your kids a balanced diet –

A)For that reason most of us would question the parenting skills of someone who fed their kids only Ice cream cake & candy


B) A grand parent might be able to get away w/ that – ( My kids know that Papa Tony – my dad – give them all the sweats they want

1)   The RIGHT of a Grand parent


C) But we would question  the parenting skills of someone who fed their kids only Ice cream cake & candy

1)   Oh they might be the Happiest kids on the Planet – but they wouldn’t be Healthy


D) Such a diet – Stunt Growth / leave them frail & weak / & over time would great physical problems would develop from that type of Diet

So most of us would definitely wonder about parents who fed their kids that way

A)And I am sure that most of us if not all of us would report a Parent who inserted poison into their kids food


B) And those who would report a parent in such a circumstance – would be considered HEROIC -  saving the Children


C) Now w/ that picture in your mind of parents & kids – I want us to turn now to the Church


See when it comes to the Church today there are some who feed their flocks what amounts to spiritual  Ice Cream Cake & candy –

A)Feel good sermons – whose aim is to make people feel happy / to help them feel good about themselves


B) Sermons where people are never CONVICTED / CONFRONTED or CHALLENGED –

1)   Although the Congregation is Happy – not Healthy


C) Then there are other “Spiritual leaders or Movements” Who feed their Congregations or followers – what amounts to Poison

1)   Causing their Congregations to never come to life / but  remaining dead in their Sins


Now although most of us would not question someone who came down on a parent for not taking care of their kids

A)People get very upset when a minister comes down on another ministry movement or Teachers


B) But it is necessary to do so – because the Bible does – and that is what 2 Peter CH. 2 is about – False Teachers

1)   1 Peter opposition from w/ out = Persecution

2)   2 Pet. Opposition from w/ in False Teachers –      Read v.1-9


In a moderate city back east there were these 2 Brothers who were two very rotten individuals /  they were the cause of much of the crime in that area

A)Prostitutes / gambling / you name it they had a part in it !

          Result they had become very wealthy -


B)The older of the two brothers was killed in an auto accident - and his younger brother wanted to have a nice funeral for his brother ( who do it?)

1)  So he approached a pastor of one of the local churches / this particular Pastor had a church / building was in need of a lot of repairs


C)Congregation was growing & really they needed a new facility / So this younger brother said to the Pastor

1)  I see you are in need of a new facility / make a deal / You perform my brothers funeral & tell the people in this town my bro . was a saint

I will give you 2 million dollars / you can build a new building !


Pastor thought for a moment - looked at Cross hanging / building / then at the brother / grin on face I’ll do it one condition - Check now !


The day of the funeral came - place was packed people wanted to see what this pastor was going to say about this guy !

A)             Pastor began –


This guy was a dirty rotten scoundrel - who caused this community nothing but trouble / Prostitution / drug dealings / theft – you name it – he was a part of it – He was a Horrible man - but compared to his younger brother – saint



Here in 2 Peter – Peter would warn us about those who try to influence the flock of God in a negative way !!!

A)Those who would seek to Manipulate the Body of Christ for their own personal Gain



Now Peter was a true Shepherd – commissioned by the Lord to Feed the Flock & to Tend the Flock

A)He was faithful to the Call – Ch. 1 He is feeding – reminding his readers of the importance of the Sure word of Prophecy – Endures


B) Ch. 2 Tending – Part of tending is to Warn – Ch. 2 makes up the heart of this letter -   Warning about False Teachers


Col 1: 28Him we preach, warning every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.


The Job of a Pastor is to not just feed the Flock / but also to warn the flock – Pastor who only feeds & doesn’t warn is fattening up for the kill

A)Peter sets out do warn against false teachers


B) The Chapter breaks down in this way V.1-3 Characteristics

/ v. 10 – 16 The Practices of the False teachers

               V. 18- 22  The Results of their false teachings


 C) In between – Warnings – about their judgment


Today – I want us to Consider their Characteristics – as it relates to the Church / next week – as it applies to our nation


Today – the Characteristics in the Church

A)4 things that are common in false teachers / you will find these in all false religions/  some will  have all of these Characteristics/ others only some


#1 They secretly bring in Destructive  heresies

A)Word Secret is Subtle – a subtle deception – The right terminology is used but in the wrong way


B) They will talk about Jesus / talk about God – they will show up at your door mentioning things like Salvation / end times /

1)   Terminology is RIGHT – but the way it is used is wrong

C) Interesting to note that most members of cult groups used to belong to an Evangelical or Christian Church

1)   Subtle Deception – sometimes in the mist of a trial – group comes along w/ what they project as the missing link


D) Or they are there to walk thru them – in the mist of that difficult situation


How do we avoid subtle Deceptions – 3 important rules to Follow


1st The fact that a message is taught by a Church doesn’t mean that is true – Paul to the Ephesian Elders -   Acts 20

Acts 20: 29For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock.


A)Savage wolves come in among you – Idea here they are wolves dressed in sheep’s Clothing – they look like sheep – but not sheep

1)   How tell a Wolf from a sheep – by what they eat


B) Wolves eat sheep – always coming down on sheep – Prey on the sheep

  1) Paul continues - 


30Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.


C) 2nd Distinction is they draw people to themselves – while the True Shepherd is constantly pointing people to Jesus!!


 31Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.


What Paul says here is vitally important for us – mistake of the Church in  times past – not watching –

A)Reason there are so many problems  in the church today

    We have forgotten that we are in a Battle – Satan’s ways haven’t changed


B) What was Satan’s tactic is the garden ? Subtle Deception

1)   Came to Eve – seeking to get her to do what God said not to do by questioning God’s word – where he always begins


Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”


Eve Answered – No Just this one – eat we will die

Satan Response - Not die be like God


C) HIS MESSAGE – God is holding out on you

1)   Satan seeks to deceive people in the same way today – You can’t only

    believe the Bible -   There is More ( Beginning open door to heresy )


D) Most of the time they just start sharing things that sound spiritual but are not in the Bible –

1)   but because people don’t know their Bibles they don’t know the Difference


E) WE NEED TO BE BEREANS – Acts 17 Berea

Acts 17 11These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.


So 1st just because it is taught by a Church doesn’t mean that is true


2nd Just because something is Popular doesn’t mean it is Right

A)Just because it brings in people doesn’t mean that it pleases God


B) EXAMPLE : Oprah – Popular – but if a person follows her philosophy they will end up in Hell

The greatest way for me to connect to my spirit, to connect to the capital WHO of who I am, the real who of who I am — not Oprah Winfrey talk show host, not Oprah Winfrey actress, not Oprah Winfrey whatever the image, is through meditation. Meditation for me is different. It's just being still and knowing that there is something much greater than yourself at work within yourself. It is the stilling and the quieting of the world outside yourself, so that you come to know the truth, the authentic truth, of who you really are.

Now to some at first glance that might not seem so Bad – She wants to be a Better person

A)Problem is she is concerned about WHO  she is / not WHO HE IS

    Concerned w/ what She can do / Not what HE HAS DONE


B) But it gets worse  On her Website – Two categories the Spirit & the Soul

 1)in both she relies heavily on the insight of a man Name Gary Zukav–

      You can ask him questions – he gives his perspective on these issues


This was on Gary Zukav official Website

My life is dedicated to the birth of a new humanity.  That birth is now in progress.  We are all involved in it.  The new humanity is being born inside us.  We are awakening to new perceptions and new values.  These are leading us to new goals.

Our new perceptions are that the Universe is alive, wise, and compassionate.  It is a friendly place, not the violent, merciless place that we have often made our small part of it.  Our new values are the values of the soul -- harmony, cooperation, sharing, and reverence for Life.  Our new goals are authentic power - the alignment of the personality with the soul -- and a planet without conflict.


B) Now Oprah is popular – but she is not right


C) Learn this – The Ultimate difference between a true teacher & a false one is this A true teacher preaches the message of the Bible whereas a false teacher preaches what he thinks the bible ought to be saying


D) To put it another way – True teacher preaches what the Bible says / but a false teacher will try to make the Bible fit their Philosophy

1)   Oprah as nice as she is fits into that Category/ She  rejects the parts of

    the Bible that she doesn’t Like – God who will Judge etc



So just because it is popular doesn’t mean that it is right





3rd rule to have down : Just because it is modern doesn’t mean it is true

A)There is really no need to elaborate on this because it is the most obvious of the subtle deceptions / yet one that people continue to embrace


B) There is that tendency in our culture – because we are living in the 21st century – all our Modern technology

1)   That we know more about everything – than OLDER societies


C) The Bible is archaic & it is not scientific – and we are so smart in the areas of Science -  it is modern it must be right

1)   That is how Darwin’s Theory of evolution came into being


D) But over & over again History & Science continues to confirm the VALIDITY OF THE BIBLE

  1) Saw on Wed. God’s Menu from Leviticus


So 1st Characteristics of the false teachers is they subtly bring in destructive heresies  


2nd They Deny the one who Bought them  Several ways that this is done

A)ONE is to Deny his Deity – The Bible teaches that Jesus is God

       Thomas – My Lord & My God


Titus 2:13 3looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ,


Jn 1:1 In the Beg. Was the word ….. Word Was God !!!!


B) But all false Teachers & Movements –Deny the Deity of Christ


Jesus Christ of the Jehovah's Witness is actually Michael the archangel.

A.) According to Witness theology, Michael came to this earth and became Jesus Christ


B) His death on the cross does not apply to the common person and His resurrection is denied  altogether.

 1)Thus the Jesus Christ of the Jehovah Witness is not our Jesus Christ

C)  Nor is HE the Jesus Christ of the Christian Scientist, who simply holds Him up as a Divine Ideal..

D) The C. Scientist holds Jesus as a Master whose primary purpose was to teach us a positive way to think and live! / Not our JC    


Nor is our Lord Jesus Christ the JC  of the Mormons who teaches that Jesus  was the son of Joseph & Mary who later became God's Son

A) The more you study the teachings of Mormonism, the more you realize their Jesus Christ is not our  Lord Jesus Christ

B)Buddhist he Jesus was great teacher  / Wonderful man / Islam -He was one of Prophets

C)  Nor is our Lord Jesus Christ the Jesus Christ of the New Ager who says, Christ is everywhere! Christ consciousness

       1)  He's in you  He's in me. He's the Divine spark who just needs to be

            fanned through contemplation and meditation

D) The Jesus Christ of the New Ager is a crystal Christ/ While our Jesus Christ is the Rock of Ages!

 1) And That is the problem with the teachings of other religions - they deny

       Deity of Christ/  That Jesus was God in flesh'

2ND They Deny His Atoning work – deny the Lord who bought them

A) In what sense were these people “bought” by the Lord?


B)While it is true that Jesus Christ died for the church (Eph. 5:25), it is also true that He died for the sins of the whole world (1 John 2:2).

1)   He is the merchant who purchased the whole field (the world) that He might acquire the treasure in it (Matt. 13:44).

C)Jesus died for the World – the sins of the whole world – but only those who believe in what He did at calvary.

1)   Those who put their faith in that work ALONE  are saved


D) False Teachers & religions deny the Lord who bought them by preaching a salvation based on works – what you do / not what He did!!!

  1) Paul had this to say in Gal about those who preached such things


Gal 1:8,9 8But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed


3rd – They deny Him by leaving him out of the message

A)Some groups will talk about God – but not Jesus


B) They will say well I am into God – believe in God – I pray to God

1)   Is that Good enough?


C) James 2:19 You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble


D) No other name thru which men can be saved !!!!



4th They deny Him by not making Him the center

A)Understand if Christ is not the center He is being denied


B) He must be the Center – everything pointing to Him / revolving around Him – He is the Head


C) We see the error of this in the EV Church today – thru the Human Potential movement that has crept into the Church – thru Psychology




 Popular message – man is basically good guy – needs to discover his goodness / Human Potential

A)Bible teaches the opposite – man is Bankrupt & w/ out Christ is Hopeless heart is deceitfully wicked – who can Know it


B)This Movement seeks to put man as the center

1)   Jesus is a tool to help make man a better person / husband etc


3rd Characteristic : They are motivated by Greed v.3

A)Instead of feeding the Flock – fleecing the flock


B) Their Desire is to make merchandise of You – put you on their computer generated mail outs – Support letters Dear Pastor Rob / Pastor Salvato /

1) Rev Salvatore -      Courson -  Dear Pastor Jar Courson


C) Letters like you are their best friend – really had you on my heart

1)   All a scam – hire guys from marketing firms to write these letters / they know how to appeal to people’s emotions – get into their check book


Over the yrs – many different ploys to fleece the Flock

A)Splinters from the cross of Christ -  enough pieces to build a boat the size of the Mayflower – No wonder Jesus stumbled – HUGE


B) In Naples Italy – there is a Church that for 100yrs sold vials of Milk that they said came from Mary’s Breast – thru which she fed baby Jesus

1)   They some how were able to preserve it & Just happen to have gallons of it   -    ( Guy at Border – Holy Water Shrine of Virgin Mary - …. Miracle


C) Water from the Jordan river – little vial $25.00 / Israel for a Buck


D) They seek to make merchandise of the flock – All the gimmickry

1)   This is the very reason that Jesus turned over tables in the Temple


E) Seed Faith – Give & You will get –   Backwards if they really believed what they were preaching they should sending out $100.00 Checks

4th Characteristic v.2 They are Driven by sensual pleasures

A)Destructive ways – Lascivious ways – Pursuing Sensuality


B) Living to please the flesh / Huge Homes fancy cars / big Diamonds   

     Living LARGE on Donations


C)Some have very Blatant & Weird sexual practices – David Koresh – sleep w/ the leader


D)But others – more subtle -  behind the scenes – Jimmy Stewards / Bakers  but eventually exposed



A)It ends up on Jay Leno / Letterman / Conan – the Jerry Sienfields of the world  - make fun


B) TIME PIC of Milosevic -  Mud all over – that is the Church


All I can say is that I would want to be these guys on Judgment day

A)3 Examples -  Angels


B) Ancient world - 

1)   Sodom & Gomorrah - 


C) Heavy thing -  



Word of Promise He knows how to deliver the Righteous

A)Judgment is coming – No doubt – But the Lord knows how to deliver



Application – watch be on guard destructive heresies




Application : Do we deny the Lord who Bought us

A)Deny His Deity – by not allowing Him to be Lord in our lives


B) Deny His atoning work – by trying to earn God’s favor


C) Deny Him by not making Him a part of our conversation


D) Deny Him by not having Him as the center



Are we looking for a theology that makes us Happy or Holy ?


Fun – or Freed & Forgiven