Spot the fake


Another important reason why we must read the Bible is because it will help us spot any fakes or false preachers or any forgeries of the Gospel. Because, as we see in God’s Word, we are warned quite a lot about false teachers in 2 Corinthians 11.13-15:

13 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. 14 And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. 15 Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works.

2 Corinthians 11.13-15

In Colossians 2.8:

Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.

Colossians 2.8

2 Peter 2.1:

But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.

2 Peter 2.1

Matthew 7.15:

Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.

Matthew 7.15

2 Timothy 4.3-4:

For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.

2 Timothy 4.3-4

and 1 John 4.1:

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits, whether they are of God; because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

1 John 4.1

When I was researching this, I found it so interesting that there were six different warnings in six different Books of the New Testament and looking at this, I found there are more warnings.

The Bible continuously warns us that there are the struggles. It says:

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Ephesians 6:12

We’re in a battle where we are trying to save people, we’re trying to bring people to God but we’re in a battle where Satan wants to take as many people away from that as possible, to try to hinder the church and slow us down.

So, we need to be able to prepare and be able to see who are ‘of God’ and who are ‘not of God’, because like it says, Satan comes as an angel of light (2 Corinthians 11:14), and it’s not always obvious.

I like the analogy of how people spot forgeries when it comes to art or money. They don’t learn about what the latest forgery is or what the latest forging technique is or what the latest way to copy things is. What they do is:

they study the original so well that they can just naturally and easily find any inconsistencies when it comes to fake money, fake notes, or something else. They know the original so well! That’s how you can spot the fake. That’s how you can spot the forgery.

It’s not that you spend so much time learning about forgeries. Regularly reading God’s Word helps us this way. It’s filling our hearts with God’s Word, it’s helping us understand and know God’s Word so that if someone comes along preaching God’s Word you’ll be able to see and discern who they are. Just like the Bereans did in Acts 17.11

These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.

Acts 17.11

Therefore, to me, there are two things to consider: a lot of times people just focused on, they examined the scriptures to see if what they heard was true, but before that, they received it with eagerness, they were always happy to have someone come in to preach, they were happy to have Paul come and preach and they received God’s Word with eagerness, but they always went back to the Word to make sure what was being said was true, and we should be doing that ourselves.