Power Hungry Predators
Although it would be nice to think that everybody has integrity, that is not true. People who resist the authority of God do not want anybody ruling over them. Instead, they want to have power and authority over other people. Paul tells Timothy to watch out for these people. They may display all kinds of ungodly behaviour and they select weak targets, people who are emotionally vulnerable and morally compromised.
Jannes and Jambres were known in Jewish tradition as the magicians who resisted Moses in the court of Pharaoh in Egypt (Exodus 7:11; 9:11). Eventually none of the Egyptian tricksters could compete against the power of God through Moses. In the same way, Paul said, spiritual frauds would eventually be seen in their true light. But in the meantime, Timothy was to ensure that such characters must not have a platform to teach and infect the church, leading astray those who were less discerning.
Power-hungry predators are more common than most believers think. They may behave wickedly or camouflage their rebellious hearts; they may be wolves in sheep’s clothing. But they are dangerous; and church leaders must not be naïve. Wise leadership protects the spiritually vulnerable against those who love to gain power over them. Truly spiritual leaders gather people to Jesus while the false teachers gather people to themselves. It is important to be discerning.
© Dr Paul Adams