Beware of Spiritual Swindlers
Physical safety is a natural concern for people today because the world is filled with instability, global conflicts, and terrorist attacks. We should rightly be concerned about protecting our community, yet when it comes to spiritual safety, churches often neglect protection against people who undermine our faith. Jesus called them wolves in sheep’s clothing and issued some stern warnings to alert us.
These wolves are false teachers and prophets who appear to be genuine spiritual guides but are actually full of schemes to advance their own agenda. They look and sound good, but inside they are consumed with lust and greed. None of this is apparent right away because they preach a fine gospel in a most compelling manner. Gradually, however, they blend inaccuracy with facts, and at this point, people seem to forget that truth mixed with error is no longer truth but has become deception. You can recognize these folks in a number of ways. Jesus said they would bear fruit that would eventually reveal their true character.
- They subtly question the Bible’s authority and relevance for today.
- Little is said about living a holy life or obeying the whole counsel of God.
- Obedience to the Lord is equated with living the way you desire.
- The welfare of the sheep concerns them less than having followers.
This is a wake-up call for anyone snoozing in the pews. We can’t afford to believe everything we hear. Follow the example of the Bereans, who were commended for using Scripture to evaluate whatever was taught (Acts 17:11).
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