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False prophets:part 3 (954 hits)

False prophets:Characteristics


Follow their own spirit rather than God (v. 3). Today we might say they take Disney’s advice and follow their heart rather than the scriptures.
Claim God has spoken to them or through them when He has not (vv. 6-7). In Ezekiel’s day this meant claiming to hear from God outside His chosen channel of revelation – His prophets. Now we should be wary of anyone claiming extra-biblical revelation from God.
Are liars (v. 8). People for whom truth flies out the window the moment it is inconvenient or unpopular.
Speak “peace” when there is no peace. In other words, they give people false assurance regarding their standing before God (v. 10).
Whitewash evil. They dress up wickedness trying to make it presentable (vv. 11-12).
Will eventually be exposed and judged by God (vv. 13-16).
Utilize good luck charms and other superstitious methods (v. 18). They are syncritists – dabbling in the practices of false religions. This is seen in such things as efforts to mix new age practices with Christianity.
Do not really care for those they claim to minister to (v. 18). The false teacher’s main concern is himself, not those sitting under his teaching.
Spare the guilty and punish the innocent, often for financial gain (v. 19). Is the teacher willing to compromise truth or cover up wrong-doing in order to avoid personal loss or achieve personal gain?
Encourage sinners to continue sinning leading to their destruction (v. 22). False teachers encourage people in their sin rather than pleading with them to turn from it.
Notice how many of these concern their approach to truth. The primary characteristic of false teachers is that they hate God’s truth and therefore they use their teaching to undermine it. Nothing is more dangerous to the church than truth-haters in positions of authority. Like Ezekiel, we should be quick to call out such teachers. The protection and health of Christ’s church demands it.
Posted By: DAVID JOHNSON
Monday, December 23rd 2013 at 8:06AM
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