Spotting a Counterfeit
For such people are false apostles, deceitful workers, masquerading as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light. It is not surprising, then, if his servants also masquerade as servants of righteousness… – 2 Corinthians 11:13-15
“God has promises and words of comfort for us in his Word, but he also gives us warnings to protect us. One such warning came from the apostle Paul to the church in Corinth, and it is a warning for us as well. Paul was referring to false teachers when he warned that they’re not the real thing. They’re counterfeit; and the only way we are kept safe from their false teaching is by knowing the truth. We have to know the Bible, so that we can distinguish truth from error. We also have to ask the Holy Spirit to give us discernment, because false teachers ‘masquerade as servants of righteousness,’ trying to deceive others. How can we spot these counterfeits? The New Testament letter of Jude gives us a clue when it says that these false teachers are “shepherds who feed only themselves” (Jude 1:12). In other words, they draw attention to themselves instead of exalting Jesus; and many ask for money, purportedly in exchange for a miracle or a blessing. This has no basis in Scripture. Some false teaching is obvious, but some is less so. Thank God for his Word and for the Holy Spirit, who keeps us in the truth.” – Pastor Cymbala
- Why does God give us warnings in his Word? What warning did the apostle Paul give the Corinthian church?
- Do false teachers reveal their true intentions? Why or why not?
- How are we kept safe from false teaching?
- How can the Holy Spirit help us?
- How can we spot a counterfeit teacher?