12 Ways to Identify False Prophets, Doctrines and Teachers

Everything that has an original version is likely to have a fake. Sometimes, the proof of originality is the existence of a fake. There are many Bible verses that talk about false prophets in the Bible. Likewise, in Christiandom today, a false teaching is one which opposes the fundamental and simple truth about salvation and our faith in God. They are teachings which go against the word of God and what Christ came to die for.

12 Ways to Identify False Prophets, Doctrines and Teachers

To define false teachers from the introduction above is simple. False teachers are people who teach false teaching as if it was the true and real word of God. Such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the many (Romans 16:8). Sadly, these false teachers are in the church, right in the fold of believers and they have deceived many into believing wrong teachings. As the body of Christ, it is important that we are prayerful and discerning to identify these stains among the saints. That is why we are writing these twelve ways to identify false prophets and teachers in the body of Christ.

How Can We identify False Teachers?

There are different ways to identify false prophets and teachers. In the list below, we shall examine twelve different ways to identify them 

1. They pretend to be the Truth 

Jesus says He is the Way, the Truth and the Life. In 2 Corinthians 11:13-15. False teachers wear masks of truth and a lovely life on the outside but underneath they are full of lies and rotten lives. Even the devil is come as an Angel of light. "Why fake what can be real?" This is one valid question asked by Apostle Joshua Selman in one of his sermons which I love.  Many times, you really don't need to fake anything.


2. They teach a lot of "Truth"

False teachers teach a whole lot of "truth", just to draw you close, to get your attention and little to you, they chip in little errors that will destroy you. In all their so called "truth", you never really see the truth about Jesus and who he is (1 John 2:18-27, 4:1-6). They do not teach the full truth of the gospel, that Jesus is the only way to God and they don't focus on these things.

*Do they claim they know the truth or future but they lie ( Deuteronomy 18:20-22)


3. They perform signs (Mark 13:22-23)

They perform these signs just to bring more people to themselves, while deceiving them. (....Not all that call on Lord Lord will enter into the kingdom)


4. They are Lazy

Anyone who decides to be a false prophet is a lazy person. In most cases, you'd discover that they are not ready to do the real, hard work in being true. It takes a lot of effort to come out as an original, true version but the fake takes lesser effort. If you are lazy to 


5. Their Statements do not Match God's word

We are instructed to test all spirits because the abiliy to discern is a vital part of our Christian lives. The statements and words from a false prophet is never consistent with the word of God.

Don’t trust what people say (2 Peter 2:1)

..there will be false teachers among you.. They will be around you, in your church and bible study. This is why (1 John 4:1)...Dear Friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” Don’t just believe everything people say, but “test everything”.


6. They Filter the Truth

The truth can be bitter at times but a false prophet sweetens the truth. They usually leave out the hard truths of sin, hell, punishment, rebuke, suffering


7. They Lack the Fruits of the Spirit.

The fruits of the Spirit differ completelt fromt the gifts of the spirit. While a false prophet mat not lack the gift of the spirit, he definitelt lacks the fruits. THe Bible tells us that by their fruits we shall know them. Do they have the Spirit of God and display His fruits? Matthew 7:15-20

 Galatians 5:22-23 tells us the fruits of the spirit, the spirit of Christ, if they don't have these, they are false teachers and teachings. Check.


8. They Seek their Wellbeing Only

Do they only seek their own wellbeing and misuse people? 2 Peter 2:2-3a says “Many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed, they will exploit you with false words”


9. They Seek Popularity and Fame

Do they seek popularity, fame and acceptance from the world? Luke 6:26 says “Woe to you, when all people speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets”

10. They cannot Stand Persecution

But ( Matthew 5:10-12) and (Luke 6:22-23) tells us that we are blessed if we are persecuted for righteousness sake.


11. They seek Self-glory

The Bible in Romans 11:36 accords all glory to God because it is"from him and through him and to him are all things". On the contrary, a false prophet will always seek self glorification rather than giving God the glory. Sometimes, they try to camouflage and make it seem like they're giving God the glory. You just have to be sensitive and discerning to know that they're not and you will see the height of falsity in their hearts. In most cases, they never truly know the God that they confess and since they don’t give glory to God, then they are false teachers.


12. They are Manipulative and Diabolic 

By record, every false prophet is either manipulative or diablolic in their approach to helping people.


We have so many teachers today who speak to us the truth, but inwardly are false teachers who chip in Little errors that may go unnoticed. Use God's words to identify false teaching. And always equip yourself with the truth so as to not be caught by what is false. be on guard for the sake of yourself and others. Don’t get caught in the waves of false teachers. If you are, get out of there straight away before you are torn to pieces. And if you know people caught in it, help them identify it, lovingly plead with them, show them the truth and if needed snatch them out of the fangs of those wolves in sheep clothing.




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