Ugh, it’s the dreaded curse common among adolescents who are crossing that monumental threshold from childhood to adulthood. One moment they are carefree children, playing silly games in the backyard, the next moment, by God’s incredible design, that complex body that He created begins a remarkable change. One not-so-pleasant byproduct of those changes contributes to that common, embarrassing teenage scourge, the birth of the blemish, aka, acne. While symptoms vary in severity, those spots and blemishes are considered a right-of-passage into adulthood.
The apostle Peter, in his swan song to the believers in the early churches, warned of spots and blemishes…dangerous, deceptive, and destructive ones. Facing a death sentence in Rome due to his faithful preaching of the gospel, Peter takes this one final opportunity to warn his beloved children to be aware of apostasy, and to anchor them in the only sure defense against that false doctrine. Just as the Old Testament era was plagued by “false prophets,” crafty “false teachers” would attempt to derail these New Testament saints. The peril would result from the introduction of something false, or pseudo, not genuine, pretentious, a sham, not what it appears to be. And to make identifying these apostates more difficult, they weren’t obvious enemies from without, but they were embedded within the church, “among you,” wolves in sheep’s clothing, savvy counterfeits, difficult to discern.
Peter characterized these counterfeits by the fact that they acted “privily,” secretly, craftily, fueled by greed and “covetousness,” not serving on behalf of their followers, but to “make merchandise” of them, to use them for financial gain. “Many shall follow their pernicious ways,” allured by the subtle “heresies” they promote. “Spots they are and blemishes;” they are flaws, stains, defects, “beguiling unstable souls,” subverting the Word of God, causing many to lose their spiritual footing.
So how do we avoid “being led away with the error of the wicked,” falling from our own “stedfastness?” How do we battle such an alluring, close-to-genuine counterfeit? The only way to recognize the false is to acquire a DEEP understanding of the truth, “to continue…in the things which” we have learned, to establish ourselves so deeply in His Word that we are “thoroughly furnished.” Get into His Word, stay in His Word, and stabilize your soul. Be vigilant, so that the false spots and blemishes cannot beguile you, because they will try!
II Timothy 3:16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.
Keep me on guard for false teachers, judging all that I hear in the light of Your Word. Keep me vigilant to those who would distort Your Word.<div class='sharedaddy sd-block sd-like jetpack-likes-widget-wrapper jetpack-likes-widget-unloaded' id='like-post-wrapper-164683012-1532-62bbe903ec944' data-src='https://widgets.wp.com/likes/#blog_id=164683012&post_id=1532&origin=wordpress.grandmasgleanings.com&obj_id=164683012-1532-62bbe903ec944' data-name='like-post-frame-164683012-1532-62bbe903ec944' data-title='Like or Reblog'><h3 class="sd-title">Like this:</h3><div class='likes-widget-placeholder post-likes-widget-placeholder' style='height: 55px;'><span class='button'><span>Like</span></span> <span class="loading">Loading...</span></div><span class='sd-text-color'></span><a class='sd-link-color'></a></div>