“These false teachers are like unthinking animals, creatures of instinct, born to be caught and destroyed. They scoff at things they do not understand, and like animals, they will be destroyed. Their destruction is their reward for the harm they have done. They love to indulge in evil pleasures in broad daylight. They are a disgrace and a stain among you. They delight in deception even as they eat with you in your fellowship meals. They commit adultery with their eyes, and their desire for sin is never satisfied. They lure unstable people into sin, and they are well trained in greed. They live under God’s curse. They have wandered off the right road and followed the footsteps of Balaam son of Beor, who loved to earn money by doing wrong. But Balaam was stopped from his mad course when his donkey rebuked him with a human voice.” 2 Peter 2:12-16 NLT
Peter calls out false teachers with a passion. The disdain in his words is obvious. We must remember that Peter was a first hand witness of Jesus life, ministry, and teaching. He was an apostle of Jesus. He was one of the original 12 disciples (see Matthew 10:2-4). He had apostolic authority to set the record strait and set things in order. In this chapter we see, clearly, that there were false teachers invading the ranks of the church and misleading the people. The deception of these false teachers was so bad that Peter referred to them as unthinking animals. Peter makes it clear what their end will be: destruction. He rebukes them for their adulterous eyes, insatiable appetite for sin, and their greed for money. He pronounced them under a curse. He uses Balaam as an example. In Numbers Chapter 22 we read of Balak, the Moabite king, who was afraid of the conquering Israelites because he saw their numbers and heard about their conquering. Balak sent for this prophet to come and pronounce a curse upon Israel. Balaam was told, by God, not to go and, yet, he went anyway, after more persuasion. It appears that Balaam was lured by the monetary offer from king Balak. On the way to Moab, an angel from the Lord was in the path with drawn sword, ready to kill Balaam. The donkey saw the angel and veered off the path. Twice more the donkey tries to avoid the angel and Balaam beats the animal. The third time, God opened the donkey’s mouth and loosed its tongue to speak to the wicked prophet. The donkey was more obedient to God than Balaam. Finally, Balaam saw the angel and realized his error. Today, we have false teachers invading the ranks of the church and, like Balaam, their motives are sinful and selfish. May God help us to keep our focus on Jesus and doing His will. May God help us discern false teaching in the church and cast it out!!
Rev. Curtis Norris