Scripture Reading: Jeremiah 5:25–31
A. Although we live in a society that has trained us to be suspicious, there are a few people we would like to think we can always trust.
B. Instead of trusting that preachers would never mislead us, we must guard ourselves from deception, because false teachers still abound.
I. False prophets have always been willing to speak “smooth things.”
A. Ahab’s prophets told him exactly what he wanted to hear (1 Kings 22:11–14).
B. Hananiah satisfied the Jews’ appetite for positive news (Jeremiah 28).
II. False prophets are a danger to all mankind.
A. They cost Judah their freedom (Jeremiah 40:2–3), their welfare (cf. Jeremiah 29:6; Ezra 2:64), and their lives (Jeremiah 42:19–20).
B. Jesus warned about false prophets (Matthew 7:15; 24:11–12).
III. False prophets are still in our midst today.
A. They were at work in Cyprus (Acts 13:6–8), Galatia (Galatians 1:6–7; 3:1), Colossae (Colossians 1:16–23), and Ephesus (1 Timothy 4:1–3).
B. Paul told Timothy that the problem of false teaching would only get worse (2 Timothy 3:13; 4:3–4, cf. 1 John 4:1).
C. False prophets claim that God will not punish iniquity (Jeremiah 5:12–13; 14:13; 23:16–17).
IV. What can we do about false prophets?
A. We must guard ourselves with education (Acts 17:11; 2 Timothy 3:14–17).
B. We should expose their lies and have no fellowship with them (1 Kings 18; Romans 16:17–18; Ephesians 5:6–7; Titus 1:9–11).
C. We should never fail to uphold the truth (Ephesians 4:14–15).
A. False teachers normally look harmless (Matthew 7:15; 2 Corinthians 11:13–14).
B. Will you choose to be seduced by the enchantments of false teachers, or will you heed the truths of God’s holy Word?