Empty Wells and Looming Clouds

II Peter 2:17-18.

These are wells without water, clouds that are carried with a tempest; to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever.

For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error.

False teachers, says Peter, are like dry wells. Useless, empty, having nothing to offer, they have nothing to give that will encourage life and health.

Anyone who has lived in tornado country understands “clouds carried with a tempest.”


These looming clouds come with strong winds, heavy rain, and possibly destructive hail. They almost seem human sometimes, ready to drop down and smother everything below.

False teachers ignore the mists of darkness to which they are doomed. Their only interest is in gaining fame, control, and riches.

They speak great, empty, immoderate, extravagant words; words that tell you that all you have to do is believe, name and claim, and everything you ask for will be given to you. Their allure is to the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. We all, in our human thinking, wish we had more–more money, more possessions, better cars, bigger houses, more fame, more influence. Their promises lure those who had been truly free of these carnal desires, and from the blandishments of false teachers who make false promises.

The appeal of false teachers works so well because they are very good at wrapping a kernel of truth with a lot of baloney. The most effective lies are those that contain just enough truth to be convincing.

We need to beg God for discernment and understanding, to be able to identify the false teachers who would lure us into beliefs that will make them rich and famous.

2 thoughts on “Empty Wells and Looming Clouds

  1. I think you recently commented on how some people think Peter is quite harsh, and how they wish he wouldn’t be like that…that he would be more gentle; more Christ-like.

    Such arrogance.

    If I didn’t know better, I would think that they are unaware that Peter was nothing but the instrument, and that he only wrote what God gave him to write.

    The “harsh” words are GOD’S words.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Some people say the same sort of things about Paul. He’s a misogynist; he’s a homophobe; he’s judgmental, and so on. And he, too, was just an instrument writing as God led him.

      Like

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