Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thorn bushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
Through your computer, tablet, or smart phone you have at your fingertips the opportunity to hear thousands of messages from hundreds of teachers. The Internet provides incredible opportunity . . . and tremendous danger. From the varying forms of media, you can be built up or torn down.
Today’s passage provides a much needed warning. There are many appealing messages and messengers, but some present teaching outside the body of truth found in Scripture. Watch out for deceiving and dangerous false prophets who are wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing.
How do you spot a dangerous teacher? Consider their words, actions, and attitudes. Hold it up to Scripture — God’s inerrant Word. Consider their lifestyle. Evaluate their decisions. Sooner or later what is happening on the inside will be revealed on the outside. The inner seed will produce outward fruit. When you see the fruit you know the seed.
Father, help me be one who knows Your Word. Guard me against false teachers, even when their words and presentations are attractive. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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