The Olivet Discourse – False Prophets


The warning of False Prophets follows immediately behind the warning of falling away as the two are closely related. It is as the result of these False Prophets and their false teachings that so many will fall away and betray one another. the previous post did touch on the current problems and false doctrines at the time of the early church so this quick post will simply deal directly with the question of whether or not False Prophets was a problem for the early Church before the destruction of the temple and the city of Jerusalem. Simply asked, were there a significant number of “False Prophets” before the end of “this generation?”

It must be noted here that the term False Prophet should not be used interchangeable with the previously described False Christs. This should be seen more as aberrant teaching found with the Church that would lead many astray.

  • Matt 7:15 “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.
  • Acts 20:29 I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock
  • Romans 16:17 I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.
  • 2 Cor. 11:13 For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ
  • Galatians 2:4 Yet because of false brothers secretly brought in-who slipped in to spy out our freedom that we have in Christ Jesus, so that they might bring us into slavery
  • 2 Peter 2:1 But false prophets also arose among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction.
  • 1 John 4:1 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.

These handful of verses just barely scratch the surface of the problems facing the early church. As mentioned previously the heresies of the Judaizers, Gnostics, Neo-Hymenaeans, Antinomians and Immoralistare directly addressed in the new testament in which the early Church is warned to avoid them.

Again, like every discussion thus far, it is quite easy to make the case that False Prophets were a serious problem in the early Church and well before 70 AD.


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