-Peter makes us aware of the reality of false prophets among the people both past and present in this chapter with a warning of impending doom for those who stray from the true knowledge of Christ and lead others astray. These false prophets have specific descriptions. They secretly bring in destructive heresies; they deny the Master who bought them; they are bringing upon themselves swift destruction (2 Peter 2:1). They blaspheme the way of the truth and take many down with them (2 Peter 2:2). In their greed they exploit with false words bringing on their just condemnation from long ago, which is neither idle nor asleep (2 Peter 2:3). *Application* If false prophets will always be among us, we must always be vigilant and aware of satanic influences that seek to harm and destroy us as believers. This is spiritual warfare 101, and we’d better be prepared for its reality. The only sure way to not be deceived is to know the truth. We know the truth by knowing the revealed Word of God, which is explicit in the Bible. It is our authority and guide. Trust it and avoid deception.
-The preserving of the saints and the sinners is dealt with in the next pericope of this chapter. For the righteous there will be rescue and deliverance. For the unrighteous there is binding until the proper punishment can be exacted towards unrepentance on the day of judgment, especially for those who indulge in the lust of defiling passion and despise authority (2 Peter 2:4-10). *Application* We choose our sides in this cosmic battle over good and evil. Choose wisely my friend, the judgment will arrive sooner than we can imagine.
-There is no fear in the wrongdoers as Peter explains in the next paragraph of this chapter. False prophets are like unreasoning animals and creatures of instinct, born to be caught and destroyed. In other words, they will be caught in the trap of their own foolishness. They will garner the wage of their misconduct for all to see. Their adultery, insatiable sin, and enticements lead them to being accursed as wretched children who forsake the true way and go after the way of Balaam, who loved gain from wrongdoing in his greed. He was rebuked, and so will the false prophet (2 Peter 2:10b-16). *Application* Don’t be swayed by those doing immoral things. Walk away from it. The Word says to resist the devil and he will flee from you (James 4:7, 1 Peter 5:8-9).
-Peter goes on to describe false prophets as waterless springs and mists driven by a storm, which are reserved for utter gloom and doom (2 Peter 2:17). What the Lord is saying to us here is that there is a false hope in these ungodly people. Think about being thirsty for water and coming to a well with expectations only to be denied. Think about the storm clouds that promise rain, but only produce a slight mist, producing no sustenance. This is what false prophets are like; they produce no hope in the end. They promise freedom, but are slaves of corruption. They are overwhelmed by their selfish desire and are entrapped (2 Peter 2:19). These have apparently even tasted the Holy Spirit and His goodness, but have turned aside and have become entangled in the trap of sin and are overcome by it. For these, the end result is worse than before they even knew the truth of the gospel of Christ Jesus. They are like dogs who return to their vomit and pigs that become clean, yet desire to go back into the mire and mud to wallow in it (2 Peter 2:20-22). *Application* The emptiness and futility of the wayward false prophet should be heeded. We live in the last days for sure, and these false teachers and evil will increase (2 Timothy 3:1-7; 4:3-4). Be careful who you listen to and let have authority in your life. Make sure they line up with the Word of God in teaching and practice. This will allow you to grow.
Verse to Memorize: 2 Peter 2:9