Matthew 7:15-23

True and False Prophets

15 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.
16 By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?
17 Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.
18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.
19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
20 Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

True and False Disciples

21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’
23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

Matthew 7:15 in Other Translations

KJV
15 Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
ESV
15 "Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.
NLT
15 “Beware of false prophets who come disguised as harmless sheep but are really vicious wolves.
MSG
15 "Be wary of false preachers who smile a lot, dripping with practiced sincerity. Chances are they are out to rip you off some way or other. Don't be impressed with charisma; look for character.
CSB
15 "Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves.

Matthew 7:15-23 In-Context

13 “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.
14 But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
15 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.
16 By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?
17 Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit.
18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit.
19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
20 Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.
22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’
23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’
24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock.
25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.

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Cross References 12

  • 1. Jeremiah 23:16; Matthew 24:24; Mark 13:22; Luke 6:26; 2 Peter 2:1; 1 John 4:1; Revelation 16:13
  • 2. Ezekiel 22:27; Acts 20:29
  • 3. Matthew 12:33; Luke 6:44
  • 4. James 3:12
  • 5. Luke 6:43
  • 6. S Matthew 3:10
  • 7. Hosea 8:2; Matthew 25:11; S John 13:13; 1 Corinthians 12:3
  • 8. S Matthew 3:2
  • 9. Matthew 12:50; Romans 2:13; James 1:22; 1 John 3:18
  • 10. S Matthew 10:15
  • 11. Luke 10:20; Acts 19:13; 1 Corinthians 13:1-3
  • 12. Psalms 6:8; Matthew 25:12,41; Luke 13:25-27
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