2Pe 2:1 But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.
2Pe 2:2 And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed.
When it comes to Bible teaching, we make a big mistake if we think that there is "safety in numbers". If a large number of people follow a certain Bible teacher, that person will be considered fairly mainstream by a fair section of Christendom. Of course, there are popular teachers in both sides of most issues in Christianity, so it really isn't possible to think that having a large following is some kind of measure of the truth of what someone is saying. Take John Macarthur and Joel Osteen for example. Both have large followings, and they are giving a completely DIFFERENT message. I disagree in part with both of them, for different reasons. In my view they both speak a partial version of the truth, but neither really gives the full counsel of God. But I digress …
Its not just the destructive TEACHINGS that people are going to follow, the Bible says that they are also going to follow their destructive WAYS. And this we see happening.
We have a situation now where Christian leaders are committing adultery, divorcing and remarrying and this is considered unfortunate, but not really THAT serious.
Is it any wonder that the divorce rate in the western church is now actually HIGHER than the corresponding rate in the world, according to the latest statistics?
If as one pastor told me, the number one problem in the Assemblies of God in Australia amongst pastors is INTERNET PORNOGRAPHY, that we have a situation where many Christians are enslaved to a greater or lesser extent by the same vices?
Even if a teacher teaches holiness of life – if they themselves have DESTRUCTIVE WAYS – those WAYS will rub off on their hearers and people will fall into the error of the wicked.
This happened in Australia with the public fall of a great apostolic leader who has since truly come back to God. After his fall, MANY, MANY young people committed adultery and walked away from God.
We have to be very careful therefore to keep our eyes on Jesus and not on the mightiest of God's men out there.
Thank God there is mercy for those who truly repent. God rejoices when anyone repents, how much more when an influential leader of God's people repents.
But the false teachers out there generally DON'T repent.
And because of what they do, TRUE CHRISTIANITY is spoken evil of by THINKING PEOPLE.
We see cases where the world mocks the greedy, lustful evangelists, or where people bitterly oppose Christianity. Many times these opponents were exposes to Christianity and had a bad experience.
Let us therefore fear God, lest we should be the occasion of someone stumbling into sin.
A false teacher, however, will not be thinking about this. As we will see, a false teacher will be thinking more about THE MONEY, and what brings the money, that is "People on Seats" (to avoid the coarse expression). To achieve this goal, there are various tactics that can be employed. The chief one among them, is "tell the people what their itching ears want to hear". (2 Timothy 4:3)
Tell them that God will make them rich and comfy …
Tell them that God doesn't absolutely require submission to His Will …
Tell them that they can be whatever they want to be …
The list goes on and on.
Jesus warned us about false teachers and so did his chief apostles. Its not a bad thing to do.