The last days, Video preaching

The last days #2: Apostasy Pt1

The last days #2: Apostasy, Pt1                  2Timothy  3:1-9

There is a word from God for the last days. We saw last time how the Spirit speaks. He warns of apostasy. It is a term we can use without being clear about what it means. The word itself means a ‘falling away, departure’ as we have seen. It is a movement away from God and so into rebellion against His laws. But, what does apostasy actually look like? Numerous examples of specific behaviours are given here as being characteristics of apostasy.

God’s people are to know what apostasy looks like and so be able to identify it at work in the last days. Sadly, apostasy can be at work right under the noses of God’s people and them not know! They are to know so as to separate from it and witness against it.


Cp v1-5.

The last days are times of grave danger. Perilous = ‘fierce, savage’. The word appears in one other place—Matt 8:28. The last days will be days of devilish power when men are under the unrestrained power of Satan.

Miscellaneous behaviours that are components of apostasy, v2-4. These behaviours are what make the last days dangerous. Beside the actual behaviours themselves, there are some interesting things to be observed here.

The dangerous love of the last days, v2-4. Today much is ignored/justified in the name of love. The concept of love is seen four times in this list. Apostasy is marked by these kinds of love.

The obvious role of children, v2. The apostasy of the last days is demonstrated in the young! Young people are increasingly encouraged to act in defiance of God. Disobedience to parents is part of the lawlessness of the age. It has come to be regarded as normal childhood behaviour!

Lack of self-control, v3-4. This seen in several ways—incontinence > ‘no self control’; heady > a headlong rush forward without looking where one is going.

Increasing. Cp v13. It is a developing movement.


The dangerous features of the last days are described as a morph of Christianity. It is a form of godliness. These behaviours are endorsed and encouraged in the name of godliness. This is a fact that is most dangerous of all! Apostasy advocates a view of God that permits these evils to be viewed as an expression of godliness. Cp Is 5:20-24.

An example of this apostasy already at work in Paul’s day. Cp v6-7.

It was promoted in the visible church by men who had crept in. Cp Jude 2. They come in as enemies under cover to lead captive.

Their true character, v8. They were enemies of the truth. Their minds had been destroyed by error and they had been rejected by God. The truth and the faith are the benchmarks by which they are measured and found wanting.

They secured a measure of success, v6-7. They attracted followers. The character of these followers is given. Cp 1Cor 11:19, 2Tim 4:2-4.

An example of this apostasy from ancient history, v8. God’s people are to learn from Biblical history and apply the episodes to their present context.

God’s servant must withdraw from religious apostasy and all who support it, v5. He must ‘avoid’ them, have nothing to do with them, warn against them. There is a reason given for this withdrawal. Forv6…men of corrupt minds and reprobate…He had to make a judgement about the spiritual character of these men and act accordingly. In withdrawing from them he must withdraw from those who followed them! Cp 2Thess 3:6. This avoidance is necessary because a failure to do so would make him complicit in their evils works. Cp 2Jn 1:11.


They advance for a time. Their advance is a powerful/violent one—imagery of metal being stretched by hammering. The reference here is believed to be to the Egyptian magicians. Cp Ex 7:11. In the power of the devil they counterfeited the work of God.

It will come to an end. But it comes to an end. So far and no further!

In the end all who follow apostasy will be seen to be fools. There is the historic precedent for this in the confusion of the Egyptian magicians who aped the power of God. What utter eternal confusion and shame awaits those who follow a path of apostasy.

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