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2. False Teachers

1But there arose false prophets also among the people, as among you also there shall be false teachers, who shall privily bring in destructive heresies, denying even the Master that bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. 2And many shall follow their lascivious doings; by reason of whom the way of the truth shall be evil spoken of. 3And in covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose sentence now from of old lingereth not, and their destruction slumbereth not. 4For if God spared not angels when they sinned, but cast them down to hell, and committed them to pits of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; 5and spared not the ancient world, but preserved Noah with seven others, a preacher of righteousness, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly; 6and turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, having made them an example unto those that should live ungodly; 7and delivered righteous Lot, sore distressed by the lascivious life of the wicked 8(for that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their lawless deeds): 9the Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptation, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment unto the day of judgment; 10but chiefly them that walk after the flesh in the lust of defilement, and despise dominion. Daring, self-willed, they tremble not to rail at dignities: 11whereas angels, though greater in might and power, bring not a railing judgment against them before the Lord. 12But these, as creatures without reason, born mere animals to be taken and destroyed, railing in matters whereof they are ignorant, shall in their destroying surely be destroyed, 13suffering wrong as the hire of wrong-doing; men that count it pleasure to revel in the day-time, spots and blemishes, revelling in their deceivings while they feast with you; 14having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; enticing unstedfast souls; having a heart exercised in covetousness; children of cursing; 15forsaking the right way, they went astray, having followed the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the hire of wrong-doing; 16but he was rebuked for his own transgression: a dumb ass spake with man's voice and stayed the madness of the prophet. 17These are springs without water, and mists driven by a storm; for whom the blackness of darkness hath been reserved. 18For, uttering great swelling words of vanity, they entice in the lusts of the flesh, by lasciviousness, those who are just escaping from them that live in error; 19promising them liberty, while they themselves are bondservants of corruption; for of whom a man is overcome, of the same is he also brought into bondage. 20For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, they are again entangled therein and overcome, the last state is become worse with them than the first. 21For it were better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after knowing it, to turn back from the holy commandment delivered unto them. 22It has happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog turning to his own vomit again, and the sow that had washed to wallowing in the mire.

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2Pe 2:1-22. False Teachers to Arise: Them Bad Practices and Sure Destruction, from Which the Godly Shall Be Delivered, as Lot Was.

1. But—in contrast to the prophets "moved by the Holy Ghost" (2Pe 1:21).

also—as well as the true prophets (2Pe 1:19-21). Paul had already testified the entrance of false prophets into the same churches.

among the people—Israel: he is writing to believing Israelites primarily (see on 1Pe 1:1). Such a "false prophet" was Balaam (2Pe 2:15).

there shall be—Already symptoms of the evil were appearing (2Pe 2:9-22; Jude 4-13).

false teachers—teachers of falsehood. In contrast to the true teachers, whom he exhorts his readers to give heed to (2Pe 3:2).

whosuch as (literally, "the which") shall.

privily—not at first openly and directly, but by the way, bringing in error by the side of the true doctrine (so the Greek): Rome objects, Protestants cannot point out the exact date of the beginnings of the false doctrines superadded to the original truth; we answer, Peter foretells us it would be so, that the first introduction of them would be stealthy and unobserved (Jude 4).

damnable—literally, "of destruction"; entailing destruction (Php 3:19) on all who follow them.

heresiesself-chosen doctrines, not emanating from God (compare "will-worship," Col 2:23).

even—going even to such a length as to deny both in teaching and practice. Peter knew, by bitter repentance, what a fearful thing it is to deny the Lord (Lu 22:61, 62).

denying—Him whom, above all others, they ought to confess.

Lord—"Master and Owner" (Greek), compare Jude 4, Greek. Whom the true doctrine teaches to be their Owner by right of purchase. Literally, "denying Him who bought them (that He should be thereby), their Master."

bought them—Even the ungodly were bought by His "precious blood." It shall be their bitterest self-reproach in hell, that, as far as Christ's redemption was concerned, they might have been saved. The denial of His propitiatory sacrifice is included in the meaning (compare 1Jo 4:3).

bring upon themselves—compare "God bringing in the flood upon the world," 2Pe 2:5. Man brings upon himself the vengeance which God brings upon him.

swift—swiftly descending: as the Lord's coming shall be swift and sudden. As the ground swallowed up Korah and Dathan, and "they went down quick into the pit." Compare Jude 11, which is akin to this passage.

2. follow—out: so the Greek.

pernicious ways—The oldest manuscripts and Vulgate read, "licentiousness" (Jude 4). False doctrine and immoral practice generally go together (2Pe 2:18, 19).

by reason of whom—"on account of whom," namely, the followers of the false teachers.

the way of truth shall be evil spoken of—"blasphemed" by those without, who shall lay on Christianity itself the blame of its professors' evil practice. Contrast 1Pe 2:12.

3. through, &c.—Greek, "IN covetousness" as their element (2Pe 2:14, end). Contrast 2Co 11:20; 12:17.

of a long time—in God's eternal purpose. "Before of old ordained to condemnation" (Jude 4).

lingereth not—though sinners think it lingers; "is not idle."

damnationGreek, "destruction" (see on 2Pe 2:1). Personified.

slumbereth not—though sinners slumber.




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