False Prophets and Teachers Overview

This post and the other posts here are taken from my book in Spanish “False Prophets and Teachers”

Here I am just going to list each of the points, and gradually, I will make a separate post for each of these points. Note that a lot of the points here are themes that I take up regularly in my writings against false prophets. Some of those things will also appear under each point.

1Pet 5:8 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:

Eph 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

Everything Satan touches leaves “his mark” on it. This is very distinctive. It is not the will of God, although Satan tries to make it look like what God does, and look like the will of God.

Definition: False Prophet – Somebody who perverts, twists, or manipulates the message of God for his own personal purposes. In this, he does not give the message of God such as God gives and commands us to give it, but he puts his own “touch” on it slightly or greatly changing it. (David Cox)

2Pet 1:21 For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake [as they were] moved by the Holy Ghost.

God has to be behind every true presentation of truth and the gospel, and Satan perverts or changes it for his own purposes. What those purposes may be is not so important as that it is not God’s will.

1Pet 1:10 Of which salvation the prophets have enquired and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace [that should come] unto you: 1Pet 1:11 Searching what, or what manner of time the Spirit of Christ which was in them did signify, when it testified beforehand the sufferings of Christ, and the glory that should follow. 1Pet 1:12 Unto whom it was revealed, that not unto themselves, but unto us they did minister the things, which are now reported unto you by them that have preached the gospel unto you with the Holy Ghost sent down from heaven; which things the angels desire to look into.

One of the great overpowering elements of a true minister of God is that they feel a great compulsion to be exact and in agreement completely with what God’s Word says. Over and over again we find this great respect for authority is the core difference between a true man of God and a false prophet.

1Pet 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

Col 4:6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.

For a true man of God, the Word of God validates or convicts his ministry and message. He falls or stands by how well he stands with and presents the Word of God, Scripture. It is as if every encounter that the man of God has with another person, he will give account to God for that encounter. He must present in action, attitude, and speech correctly what God wants him to show that person. As a minister of the Gospel, he understands that he personally is an example of Jesus Christ (1Pet 5:3 “being ensamples to the flock“;  Heb 13:7which have the rule over you… whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation“). No true minister of God will take any of this lightly. False prophets often give a pretense of being serious, but so often they are not really serious in obeying or uplighting this great office of spokesman for God.

Note: If something shows up as a link here, the connection may not be obvious in the title, but a section of that post will deal with the issue.

We can identify a false prophet by…
I. By their Fruit – What they do or produce by their life and ministry


1. The fruit of their doctrine is bad.

God has installed a rule of law in that doctrine and practice are highly intertwined one with the other. Real Bible doctrine directs belief to ahat God has established, positively in righteousness, and negatively in not sinning (disobeying God’s will). Bad doctrine cannot produce good practice. Bad practice comes because there are flaws in the correct understanding of God’s doctrine.

Whether the false prophet actually knows the truth and turns from it (he is a hidden apostate), or whether he is self-deceived because he has not studied Scripture or does not understand Scripture, it doesn’t matter. The dynamic between practice and doctrine is energetic, and a person honestly following Bible instruction will seek to establish the belief system behind that practice, Also a person who understands and believes true Bible doctrine will always obey it, and therefore holding firm to one or the other will force you doctrine or practice to correct itself. When there is a willful rejection of either doctrine (think norms and standards as well as objectives) or the practice that flows from that doctrine, then we have a false prophet.

2. They don’t do God’s will.

A servant of God, a man of God, is a person who puts himself willingly at the disposition of God to do the work of God, how and when God wants it done. A false prophet is no servant of God. He only serves his own desires and purposes, which is essentially is a kind of narcissism, or worship of one’s own self, his will, his desires, his pleasures over anything else including God.

3. They promote the worship of other gods or other doctrines.

    4. They disobey biblical restrictions and instructions.

    Out right rejection of God’s norms and standards, as well as duplicity, holding one standard for others, and a more beneficial standard (usually easier) for their own self, or themselves and the leaders or their favorites.

    5. They preach things that don’t result in piety nor spiritual maturity and strength, but rather vanity.

    The false prophet is usually a charismatic type of person that has a personality that attracts others to him. He is a used car salesman, or a circus huckster, calling others to himself with tidbits of interesting things, and in general is an easy-to-get-along-with, except if you don’t want to do what he says, or don’t want to open your wallet to him. But the false prophet has a tendency to focus on things in a way that makes people think they have got something real when they don’t, cotton candy preaching.

    The net end result is that people are not really like Jesus Christ at all. They may show a kind of courtesy one to another that looks like Christianity, but there is no real love there. The fruit of correct doctrine and obedience over a period of time is holiness, piety, and the filling of the Holy Spirit. Aggression is always and only directed towards Satan, Satan’s devices, sin, and those that promote Satan’s agenda. People who disagree with a pious Christian do not cause anger or aggression from that Christian. He is magnanamous in giving others the right to disagree with him. Satan’s people rarely will allow any dissent with their views.

    II. By their methods – How they do what they do.

    1. They tend to excessively control (enslave) the brethren.

    They have a tendency towards being dictators. There is a fine line between leading a group to do a job, and being a dictator. Dictators have only one will, their own. Leaders point the group in the right direction and talk about methods, but they empower and motivate their own people to actually do the work, leading by their own example instead of pushing via their own authority (dictatorship).

    2. They illicitly take money from the brethren.

    3. They sacrifice the sheep, and they don’t sacrifice themselves for the sheep.

    False prophets are abusive towards the brethren. They see the brethren as a product to harvest for their own needs. They only tend to the needs of the product in so much as it is necessary for them to produce at an optimum. Sexual abuses are just normal for a false prophet. A true man of God refuses to abuse of his charge. He holds the brethren as a higher need than any of his own needs. He is not a “day laborer” in the Lord’s vineyard, but somebody responsible, wholly dedicated to serving the needs of his charge over himself.

    4. They have a tendency towards being cruel and harsh.

      5. They don’t have integrity.

        6. They fabricate their own vision that is not of God.

        These false prophets are experts at spinning things so that what they ultimately want is presented as the will of God. A vision is something that is a plan of work. God has given us a plan for doing the work of God, and that is through local churches. But every religious group seems to see a local church as the last thing they are pushing. They have projects, methods, ways of reaching people, etc. but simply evangelizing the lost where they are, and directing them into a local church to unite with the work of God (evangelizing and discipling through a church). This is the problem with abandoning God’s plan, and replacing it with your own vision.

        7. They deceive by “doing” miracles as a means of gaining authority over the people of God.

        This point dovetails with enslaving the brethren by being a dictator. What they ultimately want is a group of highly dedicated and sacrifical people to worship his own self, the preacher that is. They use means to leverage authority over them, so that the preacher’s word is final, and having said that, they proclaim that “that is Bible!”

        8. They have a tendency towards not confronting sin, especially when that sin is in their own lives, or in the privileged among their own people.

          9. They reject, despise, hate, and denounce true authorities.

            19. They tend to exaggerate (lie).

              11. They make an exception of persons to benefit their own person or ministry. (They play favorites)

                12. They want to praise men and recognize them.

                  13. They are heretical (cause divisions over unity in doctrine).

                    III. By their character – what they are morally, what is in their heart.

                    1.  They want to appear as tremendous Christians, but inwardly, they are ravenish wolves.

                      2. They have a tendency to be proud and arrogant.

                        3. They side-step the standards of God for themselves.

                          4. They are murmurers.

                            5. They are contentious.

                              6. They are mockers.

                                7. They are sensual, without the Holy Spirit.

                                  8. They are blasphemers, attacking the person of others.

                                    9. They are people without any real rules (unlawful), without principles, without integrity.

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