Matthew 7:15
Verse (Click for Chapter)
New International Version
"Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves.

New Living Translation
"Beware of false prophets who come disguised as harmless sheep but are really vicious wolves.

English Standard Version
“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves.

Berean Study Bible
Beware of false prophets. They come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves.

Berean Literal Bible
Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.

New American Standard Bible
"Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.

King James Bible
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
"Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are ravaging wolves.

International Standard Version
"Beware of false prophets who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are savage wolves.

NET Bible
"Watch out for false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing but inwardly are voracious wolves.

New Heart English Bible
"Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Beware of false Prophets who come to you in lambs' clothing, but from within they are plundering wolves.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
"Beware of false prophets. They come to you disguised as sheep, but in their hearts they are vicious wolves.

New American Standard 1977
“Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.

Jubilee Bible 2000
Keep yourselves also from the false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

King James 2000 Bible
Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

American King James Version
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

American Standard Version
Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves.

Douay-Rheims Bible
Beware of false prophets, who come to you in the clothing of sheep, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Darby Bible Translation
But beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but within are ravening wolves.

English Revised Version
Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves.

Webster's Bible Translation
Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Weymouth New Testament
"Beware of the false teachers--men who come to you in sheep's fleeces, but beneath that disguise they are ravenous wolves.

World English Bible
"Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves.

Young's Literal Translation
'But, take heed of the false prophets, who come unto you in sheep's clothing, and inwardly are ravening wolves.
Study Bible
A Tree and its Fruit
14But small is the gate and narrow the way that leads to life, and only a few find it. 15Beware of false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16By their fruit you will recognize them. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?…
Cross References
1 Kings 13:18
He said to him, "I also am a prophet like you, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the LORD, saying, 'Bring him back with you to your house, that he may eat bread and drink water.'" But he lied to him.

Jeremiah 23:16
Thus says the LORD of hosts, "Do not listen to the words of the prophets who are prophesying to you. They are leading you into futility; They speak a vision of their own imagination, Not from the mouth of the LORD.

Ezekiel 22:27
"Her princes within her are like wolves tearing the prey, by shedding blood and destroying lives in order to get dishonest gain.

Daniel 11:34
"Now when they fall they will be granted a little help, and many will join with them in hypocrisy.

Matthew 7:14
But small is the gate and narrow the way that leads to life, and only a few find it.

Matthew 24:11
and many false prophets will arise and mislead many.

Matthew 24:24
For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and wonders that would deceive even the elect, if that were possible.

Mark 13:22
For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform signs and wonders that would deceive even the elect, if that were possible.

Luke 6:26
Woe to you when all men speak well of you, for their fathers treated the false prophets in the same way.

John 10:12
The hired hand is not the shepherd, and the sheep are not his own. When he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf pounces on them and scatters the flock.
Treasury of Scripture

Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.

Beware.

Matthew 10:17 But beware of men: for they will deliver you up to the councils, …

Matthew 16:6,11 Then Jesus said to them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the …

Mark 12:38 And he said to them in his doctrine, Beware of the scribes, which …

Luke 12:15 And he said to them, Take heed, and beware of covetousness…

Acts 13:40 Beware therefore, lest that come on you, which is spoken of in the prophets;

Philippians 3:2 Beware of dogs, beware of evil workers, beware of the concision.

Colossians 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, …

2 Peter 3:17 You therefore, beloved, seeing you know these things before, beware …

false.

Matthew 24:4,5,11,24,25 And Jesus answered and said to them, Take heed that no man deceive you…

Deuteronomy 13:1-3 If there arise among you a prophet, or a dreamer of dreams, and gives …

Isaiah 9:15,16 The ancient and honorable, he is the head; and the prophet that teaches …

Jeremiah 14:14-16 Then the LORD said to me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: …

Jeremiah 23:13-16 And I have seen folly in the prophets of Samaria; they prophesied …

Jeremiah 28:15-17 Then said the prophet Jeremiah to Hananiah the prophet, Hear now, …

Jeremiah 29:21,32 Thus said the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, of Ahab the son of …

Ezekiel 13:16,22 To wit, the prophets of Israel which prophesy concerning Jerusalem, …

Micah 3:5-7,11 Thus said the LORD concerning the prophets that make my people err, …

Mark 13:22,23 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall show signs …

2 Peter 2:1-3 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there …

1 John 4:1 Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they …

Revelation 19:20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet that worked …

which.

Zechariah 13:4 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the prophets shall be …

Mark 12:38-40 And he said to them in his doctrine, Beware of the scribes, which …

Romans 16:17,18 Now I beseech you, brothers, mark them which cause divisions and …

2 Corinthians 11:13-15 For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves …

Galatians 2:4 And that because of false brothers unawares brought in, who came …

Ephesians 4:14 That we from now on be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried …

Ephesians 5:6 Let no man deceive you with vain words: for because of these things …

Colossians 2:8 Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, …

1 Timothy 4:1-3 Now the Spirit speaks expressly, that in the latter times some shall …

2 Timothy 3:5-9,13 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such …

2 Timothy 4:3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; …

2 Peter 2:1-3,18,19 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there …

Jude 1:4 For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old …

Revelation 13:11-17 And I beheld another beast coming up out of the earth; and he had …

are.

Isaiah 56:10,11 His watchmen are blind: they are all ignorant, they are all dumb …

Ezekiel 22:25 There is a conspiracy of her prophets in the middle thereof, like …

Micah 3:5 Thus said the LORD concerning the prophets that make my people err, …

Zephaniah 3:3,4 Her princes within her are roaring lions; her judges are evening …

Acts 20:29-31 For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter …

Revelation 17:6 And I saw the woman drunken with the blood of the saints, and with …

(15) Beware of false prophets.--The sequence again is below the surface. How was the narrow way to be found? Who would act as guide? Many would offer their help who would simply lead men to the destruction which they sought to escape. Such teachers, claiming authority as inspired, there had been in the days of Isaiah and Jeremiah, and there would be again. The true gift of prophecy is always followed by its counterfeit. Even at the time when our Lord was speaking, the influence of such men as Judas of Galilee (Acts 5:37), Theudas, and other popular leaders, was still fresh in men's memories.

Which come to you in sheep's clothing.--The illustration implies something like the conception of the wolf disguising himself as a sheep in order to gain entrance into the fold. So far a special feature is added to the general allegory of John 10:12 and Acts 20:29. It is possible, though not, I think, probable, that there may be some allusion to the "rough garments," the "sheep-skins and goat-skins" of Hebrews 11:37, worn by false prophets of the hermit or ascetic type.

Verses 15-23. - Matthew only in this form, though most of the separate verses have much matter common to other passages; viz.: vers. 16, 18, parallel with Luke 6:43, 44, cf. also infra, Matthew 12:33; ver. 19, cf. Matthew 3:10; ver. 21, cf. Luke 6:46; ver. 22, cf. Luke 13:26; ver. 23, parallel with Luke 13:27. (For the connexion of these verses, cf. ver. 13, note.) Verse 15. - Matthew only. Beware. The warning against being led from the right entrance and the right way is all the more emphatic for there being no adversative particle in the true text. Beware of false prophets. The whole class of them (τῶν). Not, observe, "false teachers" (2 Peter 2:1), as though these persons only falsely interpreted fundamental truths, but "false prophets," as falsely claiming to bring messages from God. They claim to bring from God the true message of salvation, but their claim is false. These were doubtless found, at the time that our Lord spoke the words, especially among the Pharisees; but when St. Matthew recorded them, chiefly among Christians, either on the Jewish or on the Gnostic side (Colossians 2:8; 1 Timothy 6:20, 21; cf. also 1 John 4:1 and 'Did.,' § 12.). Which; qualitative (οἵτινες); seeing that they. Come unto you in sheep's clothing. In, as it were, the skins of sheep (ἐν ἐνδύμασι προβάτων), professing simplicity and gentleness, and (for, perhaps, this thought is also included) claiming to be members of God's true flock. Externally they are all this, but at heart they are something very different. But inwardly they are ravening wolves. The thought of "ravening" (ἅρπαγες) is of both violence and greed. These false prophets are not merely wicked at heart and opposed to the truth, but they wish to injure you, and that for their own gain (cf Galatians 6:13). "Of the ravenousness of wolves among the Jewes, take these two examples besides others. The elders proclaimed a fast in their cities upon this occasion, because the wolves had devoured two little children beyond Jordan. More than three hundred sheep of the sons of Judah ben Shamoe were torn by wolves" (Lightfoot, 'Hor. Hebr.;' cf. Ezekiel 34:4, on false shepherds). Beware of false prophets,.... Or false teachers; for not such who pretended to foretell things to come, but such who set up themselves to be teachers of others, are here meant; see 2 Peter 2:1. It may be queried, whether our Lord has not respect to the Scribes and Pharisees, who sat in Moses's chair, and taught, for doctrines, the commandments of men? and of whose doctrines he elsewhere bids men beware: for whatever plausible pretences for holiness and righteousness might appear in them, they were repugnant to the word of God, and destructive to the souls of men; such as their doctrines of free will, justification by the works of the law, the traditions of the elders, &c. since it follows,

which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves; for these "loved to go in long clothing", Mark 12:38.

in a garment which reached to the feet, and was made of the wool of sheep. The Babylonish garment Achan saw and stole, Rab says (r), was , a garment called "melotes": which is the very Greek word the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews uses for sheep skins, persecuted saints wandered about in, Hebrews 11:37 and the gloss upon the place, in the Talmud referred to, says, that this was , "a talith", or "garment of pure wool"; and Jarchi (s) says, that

"it was the way of deceivers, and profane men, to cover themselves, "with their talith", or long garment, "as if they were righteous men", that persons might receive their lies.''

All which agrees very well with the Pharisees, who would have been thought to have been holy and righteous, humble, modest, and self-denying men; when they were inwardly full of hypocrisy and iniquity, of rapine, oppression, and covetousness; and, under a pretence of religion, "devoured widows' houses". Though, it seems, by what follows, that Christ has respect, at least also, to such, who bore his name, and came in his name, though not sent by him, and called him Lord, and prophesied, and cast out devils, and did many wonderful works in his name; who, that they might get the good will and affections of the people, clothed themselves, not in garments made of sheep's wool, but in the very skins of sheep, with the wool on them, in imitation of the true prophets, and good men of old; pretending great humility, and self-denial, and so "wore a rough garment to deceive", Zechariah 13:4 when they were inwardly greedy dogs, grievous wolves, of insatiable covetousness; and, when opportunity offered, spared not the flock to satisfy their rapacious and devouring appetites. The Jews speak of a "wolfish humility"; like that of the wolf in the fable, which put on a sheep skin.

"There are some men, (says one of their (t) writers,) who appear to be humble, and fear God in a deceitful and hypocritical way, but inwardly lay wait: this humility our wise men call , "wolfish humility".''

Such is this our Lord inveighs against, and bids his followers beware of.

(r) T. Bab. Sanhedrim, fol. 41. 1.((s) In Zechariah 13.4. (t) Abarbinel Nachalath Abot, fol. 192. 1.15. Beware—But beware.

of false prophets—that is, of teachers coming as authorized expounders of the mind of God and guides to heaven. (See Ac 20:29, 30; 2Pe 2:1, 2).

which come to you in sheep's clothing—with a bland, gentle, plausible exterior; persuading you that the gate is not strait nor the way narrow, and that to teach so is illiberal and bigoted—precisely what the old prophets did (Eze 13:1-10, 22).

but inwardly they are ravening wolves—bent on devouring the flock for their own ends (2Co 11:2, 3, 13-15).7:15-20 Nothing so much prevents men from entering the strait gate, and becoming true followers of Christ, as the carnal, soothing, flattering doctrines of those who oppose the truth. They may be known by the drift and effects of their doctrines. Some part of their temper and conduct is contrary to the mind of Christ. Those opinions come not from God that lead to sin.
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