Teachers

Jesus Christ warned us there are two kinds of teachers, the true and the false.

“Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destructions, and there are many who go in by it.  Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.  Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.  You will know them by their fruits.  Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles?  Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.  A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit.  Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.  Therefore by their fruits you will know them.”  Matthew 7:13-20

Let’s examine the fruit these two types of teachers bear starting with the good teachers first.  First and foremost, good teachers will obey Jesus Christ and teach others about our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ using His Word, the Bible, to teach them, relying on His authority and the power given to them by the Holy Spirit.

And Jesus Came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and one earth.  Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”  Matthew 28:18

Second, good teachers will teach the truth about Jesus Christ and will not leave out any doctrine regarding the blessed Son of God.

Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God.  He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son.  If anyone comes to you, and does not bring this doctrine, do not receive him into your house nor greet him; for he who greets him shares in his evil deeds.   2 John 9-11

And when they had come to him, he said to them:  “You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you, serving the Lord with all humility, with many tears and trials which happened to me by the plotting of the Jews; how I kept back nothing that was helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and from house to house, testifying to Jews, and also to Greeks, repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.  And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there, except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me.  But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.  And indeed, now I know that you all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, will see my face no more.  Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all men.  For I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God.  Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.   Acts 20:18-28

Third, good teachers are sent by the Lord Jesus Christ for the purpose of teaching His Word and He promises to take care of them.

Now the Lord spoke to Paul in the night by a vision.  “Do not be afraid, but speak, and do not keep silent; for I am with you, and no one will attack you to hurt you; for I have many people in this city.”  And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the Word of God among them.  Acts 9:-11

Fourth, good teachers will reject all false teaching and will carefully teach the Word of God.

But reject profane and old wives’ fables, and exercise yourself toward godliness.   1 Timothy 4:7

Hold fast the pattern of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.  2 Timothy 1:13

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.  But shun profane and idle babblings, for they will increase to more ungodliness.   2 Timothy 2:15-16

Fifth, good teachers will depend upon the prophets and apostles for their teaching, the Word of Jesus Christ, and not the word of man.

…having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstoneEphesians 2:20

They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.  1 John 2:19

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.  By this you know the Spirit of God:  Every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God.  And this is the spirit of the Antichrist, which you have heard was coming, and is now already in the world.  You are of God, little children, and have overcome them, because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.  They are of the world.  Therefore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them.  We are of God.  He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us.  By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error.  1 John 4:1-6

Sixth, good teachers will teach doctrine that agrees with godliness, and will not insert the vain and false teachings of man into the truth of the Word of God.

But as for you, speak the things which are proper for sound doctrine:  that the older men be sober, reverent, temperate, sound in faith, in love, in patience; the older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanderers, not given to much wine, teachers of good things-that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the Word of God may not be blasphemed.  Likewise, exhort the young men to be sober-minded, in all things showing yourself to be a pattern of good works; in doctrine showing integrity, reverence, incorruptibility, sound speech that cannot be condemned, that one who is an opponent may be ashamed, having nothing evil to say of you.  Exhort bondservants to be obedient to their own masters, to be well pleasing in all things, not answering back, not pilfering, but showing all good fidelity, that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Savior in all things.  For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age, looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works.  Speak these things, exhort, and rebuke with all authority.  Let no one despise you.  Titus 2:1-15 

Seventh, good teachers will have a ministry that is orderly and directed by the Holy Spirit, despite persecution and opposition from the enemy, will build up those who listen to them in their most holy faith, and lead them in the good way.

For God is not the author of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.  1 Corinthians 14:33

Let all things be done decently and in order.  1 Corinthians 14:40 

But we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw from every brother who walks disorderly and not according to the tradition which he received from us.  For you yourselves know how you ought to follow us, for we were not disorderly among you; 2 Thessalonians 3:6-7

But you have carefully followed my doctrine, manner of life, purpose, faith, longsuffering, love, perseverance, persecutions, afflictions, which happened to me at Antioch, at Iconium, at Lystra-what persecutions I endured.  And out of them all the Lord delivered  me.  Yes, and all who desire to live godly will suffer persecution.  But evil men and imposters will grow worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived.  But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for corrections, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.  2 Timothy 3:10-17

…but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  To Him be the glory both now and forever.  Amen.  2 Peter 3:18 

Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”  Matthew 7:14

Of course, false teachers will bear fruit that is diametrically opposed to the fruit of good teachers; however, we still need to investigate that fruit for our own warning, protection and edification.

First and foremost, false teachers are not sent by Jesus Christ, are not filled with the Holy Spirit, and do not teach the Word of God.

To the law and to the testimony!  If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.  Isaiah 8:20

And the Lord said to me, “The prophets prophesy lies in My name.  I have not sent them, commanded them, nor spoken to them; they prophesy to you a false vision, divination, a worthless thing, and the deceit of their heart. Jeremiah 14:14

“I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran.  I have not spoken to them, yet the prophesied.  But if they had stood in My counsel, And had caused My people to hear My words, Then they would have turned them from their evil way And from the evil of their doings.  Jeremiah 23:21-22

These are sensual persons, who cause divisions, not having the Spirit Jude 19

Second, these false teachers secretly introduce heresy and deny the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

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.   2 Peter 2:1

Third, false teachers, being devoid of the Holy Spirit, will misrepresent the Word of God and cause others to fall from their own steadfastness in the faith.

…as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures.  You therefore, beloved, since you know this beforehand, beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked.  2 Peter 3:16-17 

But shun profane and idle babblings for they will increase to more ungodliness.  And their message will spread like cancer.  Hymenaeus and Philetus are of this sort, who have strayed concerning the truth, saying that the resurrection is already past; and they overthrow the faith of some.  2 Timothy 2:16-18

For there are many insubordinate, both idle talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision, whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole households, teaching things which they ought not, for the sake of dishonest gain.  Titus 1:10-11 

Fourth, false teachers are motivated by greed.

For there are many insubordinate, both idle talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision, whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole households, teaching things which they ought not, for the sake of dishonest gain.  Titus 1:10-11

If anyone teaches otherwise and does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which accords with godliness, he is proud, knowing nothing, but is obsessed with disputes and arguments over words, from which come envy, strife, reviling, evil suspicions, useless wranglings of men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose godliness is a means of gain.  From such withdraw yourself.  1 Timothy 6:3-5

By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber.   2 Peter 2:3

Fifth, false teachers get their teaching from the world, are listened to by the world, and hate and persecute those who are saved by Jesus Christ.

They are of the world.  Therefore they speak as of the world, and the world hears them.  We are of God.  He who knows God hears us; he who is not of God does not hear us.  By this we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of error. 1 John 4:5-6

“These things I command you, that you love one another.  If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you.  If you were of the world, the world would love its own.  Yet because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.  Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater that his master.’  If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you.  If they kept My word they will keep yours also.  John 15:17-20

Sixth, they lead those who follow them into the same corruption that they are bound by.

While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom a person is overcome, by him also he is brought into bondage.  For if, after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome, the latter end is worse for them than the beginning.  For it would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them.  But it has happened to them according to the true proverb:  “A dog returns to his own vomit,” and , “a sow, having washed, to her wallowing in the more.”  2 Peter 2:19-22

If you find that you are being troubled by the evil desires that once ruled your life, it is a good bet you are listening to false teachers and are under the sway of the evil one.

Seventh, false teachers reject the truth, hate and betray Jesus Christ, teach the things of Satan and lead their followers to destruction.

“You do the deeds of your father.”  Then they said to Him, “We were not born of fornication; we have one Father-God.”  Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and came from God; nor have I come of Myself, but He sent Me.  Why do you not understand My speech?  Because you are not able to listen to My Word.  You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do.  He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him.  When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it.  But because I tell the truth, you do not believe Me.  John 8:41-45

Enter by the narrow gate, for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by itMatthew 7:13

First, we need to be aware from the ample warnings that are in the Scriptures that there are and always will be false teachers until Jesus Christ comes to set up His kingdom on this earth.  We need to study the Scriptures and rely on the Holy Spirit to protect us and lead us away from the spirit of error, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience.  Second, let us hold fast to and support those who are good, sound biblical teachers and turn away from all false teachers as we are commanded in Scripture.

…having a form of godliness but denying its power.  And from such people turn away!   2 Timothy 3:5 

Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them.  Romans 16:17

May God Himself protect us and build us up on our most holy faith as we look to Him and receive what He provides through the sound teaching of His Word, and may He make us diligent students of His beloved Word that we may grow in the grace and knowledge of our glorious Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, to God Almighty be all power and glory.

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One Response to Teachers

  1. Pingback: Wickedness or Goodness | Quality of Life Ministries

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