The church is supposed to be a safe place, the household of God and a house of prayer. However, the devil is placing some false teachers and false prophets in it to lead God’s people astray when they are least suspecting of the teaching they are receiving. None of the false teachers would announce that they are such but will secretly bring in destructive heresies to the point of denying the Master who bought them. A church without discernment is a very dangerous place.
Peter put these false teachers and prophets on the same level as the fallen angels, the sinful ancient world in the time of Noah, the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. They all had invited the wrath and judgment of God. God's defiling passion, they despise authority. They are bold and willful, keep blaspheming those in authority and slandering the things that they do not know. They deceive the new converts by speaking loud boasts of folly, enticing them with sensual passions of the flesh and bring them into spiritual slavery.
The lesson we learn is to look at the lives of these teachers instead of just analyzing what they teach. We have to discern the spirit behind their teachings instead of just listening to the words spoken. Many of the fallen leaders or teachers had been exposed because of the same things Peter has mentioned – money, power and sex. Never underestimate their influence to deceive as they are demonically empowered. The church has to be vigilant in watching and praying so as to overcome such temptation.
Become a watchman for the church now and pray against any work of the devil by deception. Do not blindly trust a leader to the point of not discerning. Peter’s intention was not to arouse spiritual paranoia in the church but to caution the children of God to be careful. Are you praying for your church and her leaders? May God purify His church of all false teachers.
Ps 132:1-5 Dan 5:1-31 2 Pet 2:1-22 Prov 28:19-20