What is An Apostate?
What is an apostate? The online dictionary defines this as a person who renounces their belief. It can be a religious belief, a political belief or a principle. The Bible has made references about people who do this. These can be people who, at one time, followed Jesus but then deny Him or reject His teachings. Peter has made mention of people who once followed the Lord but somehow were led away from Him.
But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. 2 Peter 2:1 KJV
We must always remember the Father of Lies, whom we know as the devil, is always trying to misled the flock of God. This can easily happen when one does not have a relationship with God. The person, also, blatantly does not want to accept the truth when it is presented.
The word “prophet” is a term often used to relate to God. The prophet would be a person whom God uses to relay His message to the people. This was especially common in the Old Testament because there was no other way God could communicate with His people. A false prophet is someone who used to follow the Lord and now speaks false doctrine and teachings that are not what God intended. The scripture shows us they bring heresies into the church. They cause confusion and division.
For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. Jude 1:4 KJV
The Lord’s younger half brother, named Jude, also made mention of apostates. They are people who have crept into the churches and deny the Lord Jesus. They “appear” to be Christians but truly, they are there to destroy the work of the Lord and cause division. The Lord Jesus also referred to them as “wolves in sheep’s clothing.”
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Matthew 7:15 KJV
This was a scripture quoted by Matthew and he was writing this gospel specifically for the Jews. The religious leaders of the first century is a perfect example regarding apostates. They said they were from God but they brought contradiction and denied the Lord Jesus.
According to the Bible, there are people who are present in the church, who are not actually working towards the growth of the Kingdom. They may say they are Christians but we can see they only cause division, confusion, heresies and may lead you or others in the church away from God’s grace. Be vigilant and always read your Bible. This will help you to spot heresies or doctrines that go against God’s ways.