False Teachers [13 Ways You Can Spot Them]

False teachers exist inside the clergy and outside of the church. How do you know you are listening to one? False interpretation of God’s Word is one of the ways. Moreover, read on because in this message we will detail the 13 ways you can spot false teachers both inside and outside of the church.

Why 13 ways?

Biblically, the number 13 signifies defilement and in the Book of Mark chapter 7, Jesus Christ talks about what defiles a person in great detail.

Mark 7:14-23;And he called the people to him again and said to them, “Hear me, all of you, and understand: There is nothing outside a person that by going into him can defile him, but the things that come out of a person are what defile him.”  

And when he had entered the house and left the people, his disciples asked him about the parable. And he said to them, “Then are you also without understanding?

Do you not see that whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile him,  since it enters not his heart but his stomach, and is expelled?” (Thus he declared all foods clean.)  And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him.  For from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery,  coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride, foolishness.  

All these evil things come from within, and they defile a person.”

Biblically, 7 is the number of completeness and perfection, while the number 13 represents defilement.

Mark Chapter 7 where God Himself details the 13 things that defile a human being, so that we would know to avoid them.

All things happen for God’s Good Purposes.

How does the Bible describe a false teacher?

Matthew 7:15-16; Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits.”

All people should expect to encounter false teachers, because they will arise inside clergy and outside of the church.

In 2021, with online streaming and video, you do not even have to leave the comfort of your home.

Read on because we will speak factually as we detail the 13 ways you can spot false teachers!

1-Their Teachings Conflict With GOD’S WORD

1 Timothy 6:3-4, “If anyone teaches a different doctrine and does not agree with the sound words of our Lord Jesus Christ and the teaching that accords with godliness, he is puffed up with conceit and understands nothing.”

Does your priest, pastor or preacher or minister’s (clergy’s) message conflict with God’s Word?

When their message is encouraging you to do something that is in opposition to The Word, it is a false teaching being delivered by false teachers.

How can I discern what is true and what is not?

Open your Bible.

Turn to the chapter or scripture they refer to in their message or sermon.

God’s Word is clear for His children to understand.

2-False Teachers and Profits

Hebrews 13:5, Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”

Prosperity preaching.

The names change the faces stay the same, because false teachers and prosperity preaching has been around for centuries.

I mention no names because it is not for me to get in the way of God’s plan for every person.

He gave us the free will to choose the path we want to take.

God gave us all eyes to see and ears to hear.

Read all the way through this message and you will be prepared to know if your priest, pastor, preacher or minister (clergy) is a false teacher.

In truth, God takes care of His own.

In Hebrews 13:5, God is telling all of us that he will care for our every need!

Why would we need to hear self-improvement advice or instruction from a man in a pulpit?

In truth, when you see or hear things like the Prosperity Gospel and the Prosperity Bible. RUN in the other direction. Immediately!

God’s Word warns us multiple times about the dangers of the love of money in 1 Timothy 6:10.

Going to church is about honoring God and Our Lord Jesus Christ.

God has already provided each of us with His self-improvement plan for our lives.

You will discover the plan He has for your life by spending time each day in God’s Word.

3-The Gospel Cover Charge

2 Peter 2:3, “And in their greed they will exploit you with false words. Their condemnation from long ago is not idle, and their destruction is not asleep.”

Television Evangelist says, “In our next message we will tell you all about, (fill-in-the-blank). You can know it all when you buy my new book, on-sale this coming Tuesday!”

God never put a price tag on His Word.

He gives His Word to us freely.

Isaiah 55:1, “Come, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and he who has no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price.”

There was no cover charge to hear The Sermon on the Mount.

Moreover, messengers of God’s Word should never charge you for information that God has provided freely to every soul who walks the face of the earth.

4-False Teachers Have No Self-Control

Proverbs 25:28; A man without self-control is like a city broken into and left without walls.

False teachers do not display self-control.

Do they dishonor the two greatest commandments by their actions?

Matthew 5:20, For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.”

Jesus Christ was talking about the Pharisees, religious “leaders” in His day and what they focused on.

Their self-control was evident by their words and actions.

Is the focus of your priest, pastor, preacher, or minister (clergy) to help to lead others to Christ?  Or is it to condemn them or you?

In truth, we were all condemned because we were born with evil in our hearts.  

That’s the old, bad news.

The Good News is that we were condemned until Jesus Christ came to earth and died for our sins so that all who believe in Him and what He did for us would be condemned no more!

5- They Produce Bad Fruit

Galatians 5:22-23; But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The law is not against such things.”

False teachers can be known by the fruit they produce.

The proof of who they really are is in their fruit.

Matthew 7:18-20, “A good tree can’t produce bad fruit; neither can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that doesn’t produce good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So you’ll recognize them by their fruit.”

Just because they are involved in what may seem to be Godly activities, does not mean they are producing good fruit.

The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth.

John 16:13, When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth. For he will not speak on his own, but he will speak whatever he hears. He will also declare to you what is to come.”

6-False Teachers Display A Critical Spirit

Romans 2:1-3, Therefore, every one of you who judges is without excuse. For when you judge another, you condemn yourself, since you, the judge, do the same things. Now we know that God’s judgment on those who do such things is based on the truth. Do you think—anyone of you who judges those who do such things yet do the same—that you will escape God’s judgment?”

The sole mission of every priest, pastor, preacher or minister (clergy) should be The Great Commission.

That is the beginning, middle and the end of the story.

To spread The Good News that Jesus Christ died for us, rose from the grave and will come again!

Leave all the rest to God.

7-Always Connecting Church And State

Never was this more evident than in the 2020 Presidential election.

Priests, pastors, preachers and ministers (clergy) taking political sides and putting their allegiances front and center for all to see, on television, radio and social media.

The church and politics do not mix for a reason, because they have nothing to do with one another.

Messengers of God are to preach The Good News of Christ and because of what He did for us, we need not be a slave to sin any longer.

Point out the evil acts of anyone, any politician, just remember to leave the person doing the evil, to God.

Romans 12:19, “Friends, do not avenge yourselves; instead, leave room for God’s wrath, because it is written, Vengeance belongs to me; I will repay, says the Lord.”

Pray for all people in positions of leadership to walk away from political agendas and instead, walk in step with God.

8-False Teachers Are Conceited

False teachers are about themselves, when instead, they and their mission should be always and only about Jesus Christ.

Luke 18:9-14, He also told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and treated others with contempt: “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee, standing by himself, prayed thus: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector.

I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I get.’ But the tax collector, standing far off, would not even lift up his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified, rather than the other. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.”

Excessive television appearances, book tours, etc., have nothing to do with preaching God’s Great Message to the world.

9-Empty Promise Makers

Proverbs 25:14, Like clouds and wind without rain is a man who boasts of a gift he does not give.”

False teachers deliver lies disguised as promises.

The only thing any priest, pastor, preacher or minister (clergy) should say to one of the flock when they ask for prayer is this. “I will pray that your request is in line with God’s will for your life.”

The Bible outlines a long list of God’s awesome promises to His children and you can rely on God to keep His promises to you.

Beware of lofty speech because in reality they are empty promises from empty promise makers.

Rely instead on truth delivered to us by Christ Jesus through Paul.

1 Corinthians 2:1-5, And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.”

Throwing hate arrows at other priests, pastors, preachers or ministers is not Godly.

A good teacher focuses on being Jesus Christ’s messenger so that as many souls as possible can come to know The Gospel before Christ returns!

10-False Teachers Defame God’s Holy Name

A priest, pastor, preacher, minister, clergy member instructs their congregation to do something under the heading, “we believe that Jesus’ teachings are just a part of the story, not the entire story.”

Can’t believe that would ever happen?

It’s happening.

Progressive Christianity.

We have provided factual evidence that God created the universe and all things and that the Bible is truth because it is in fact, God breathed.

2 Timothy 3:16-17, All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.”

Progressive Christianity does not agree with this because they have made up their own rules.

Their rules are in opposition to The Holy Bible.

God’s Word is truth.

That would mean Progressive Christianity is a lie.

11-They Divide In Trying To Conquer

Romans 16:17-20, “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. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naïve. For your obedience is known to all, so that I rejoice over you, but I want you to be wise as to what is good and innocent as to what is evil. The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.”

Divisions inside the church, divisions against other churches and denominations of faith, clergy against clergy.

This one believes they are right, the other believes they are right.

God’s Word is right.

If a teacher or a clergy member is 100% aligned with God’s Word, then they do well.

All other things are folly.

12- False Teachers and False Doctrine

Satan incorporates a little truth into his big box of lies.

This is the way satan attempts to deceive us.

The Apostle Paul references the perils of delivering and believing false doctrine in the Book of Galatians.

Galatians 1:6-10, “I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— not that there is another one, but there are some who trouble you and want to distort the gospel of Christ.

But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. As we have said before, so now I say again:

If anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to the one you received, let him be accursed. For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.”

When you preach The Gospel to all of creation as Jesus instructed us to, you will not struggle to find things to talk about.

Spend a moment watching the television or visiting a social media site or possibly attending a church service.

I did not struggle to deliver this message, this warning about the dangers of believing in what false teachers have to say.

False teachers and clergy delivering false teachings, are everywhere in 2021.

You do not have to look hard to find one.

So, what is the answer?

As we advised above, let God’s Word test the validity of what any teacher has to say.

God is never wrong.

13- They Add and Delete from God’s Word

To add to scripture and or to leave something out is abominable and leads to the second death.

Revelation 22:18-19, I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to him the plagues described in this book, and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.”

Your Bible Concordance is your best friend here.

Fact-check your priest, pastor, preacher, and minister (clergy) after every message to make sure they are true messengers in bringing God’s Word to you.

In summary, God’s Word is Flawless.

John 1:1, In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

Why would Jesus Christ, The Word Of God, The One who created it, need anyone’s help in making it better?

The answer is, He would not.

Prophets became a thing of the past once Jesus Christ came to earth because God decided to come down and speak to us in person.

Jesus was not and is not a prophet. He is God.

False teachers exist inside and outside of the clergy, so be warned.

Beware of false teachers as they are wolves in sheep’s clothing.

When you follow a false teacher, you are being led down the road to destruction.

The road is narrow and false teachers are one of the reasons there are many who take the broad road.

Matthew 7:13-14; “Enter through the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who go through it. How narrow is the gate and difficult the road that leads to life, and few find it.”

Let’s take this journey together each week as you will find new Christian Blogs here each and every week designed especially for you to help with your walk through this life.

Psalm 102:18; “Let this be written for a future generation, that a people not yet created may praise the Lord.”

Please send your comments, questions and prayer requests to my personal email, [email protected]