Tuesday, April 19, 2011

2 Peter 2:1-3 - False prophets: Is it I, Lord?

Scripture: 2 Peter 2:1-3

Summary: False prophets arose and false teachers who will bring in destructive opinions. Many will follow them. In their greed they will exploit you.

Thoughts: The warnings about false prophets continue in this scripture. We all know the obvious examples: like Jim Jones and David Koresh. In my town, Garland, Texas, there was a group who thought that extraterrestial visitors were coming to whisk them away. They all bought houses in the same neighborhood expecting UFOs to come get them on March 31, 1998. When that didn't happen, the leader changed his story, saying that they had all become gods. These type of false prophets seem to me to be easy to spot. But what about the false prophets that are mainline? What about the pastor who has an affair with someone in his or her congregation? What about the preacher who preaches the prosperity gospel, telling people that if they believe (and possibly donate large sums to the church!) they will be blessed by God with prosperity? How do we determine which prophets are false? I think that we do that by evaluating their message. Is the gospel that they preach in line with the God that we know: a God of love and compassion, with a preference for the poor? Also, take a look at their actions. Do they preach the gospel as loudly with their actions as they do with their words? And we should be judging ourselves by the same standards, for we are prophets to others. What do our actions and message say about us? Are we false prophets?

Prayer: Give me the wisdom to evaluate the various messages that I hear, Oh Lord. Help me to sift out the chaff and know what is really coming from You. Amen.

No comments: