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Read Introduction to 2 Peter


“But these, like natural brute beasts made to be caught and destroyed, speak evil of the things they do not understand, and will utterly perish in their own corruption…”


Jude and 2 Peter are analogous books. 2 Peter 2:12 parallels Jude 10.

Jude 10, “But these speak evil of whatever they do not know; and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts, in these things they corrupt themselves.”

But these

Having shown that false teachers are inferior to angels, he demonstrates how low they are on the totem pole of human beings.

like natural brute beasts

Peter now illustrates the nature of false teachers by animals without reason. They operate on instinct, not their mind. They do what comes naturally. Their instinct is to peddle false doctrine.

False teachers are like animals that function from instinct and do not derive truth from the Word. “Brute beasts” means “belonging to nature.” Wild animals follow their appetites. Apostates follow their natural drives. They are like foxes or bears in the wilderness, seeking their prey by instinct.

made to be caught and destroyed

We treat false teachers like wild animals who we either capture or kill their ideas. This is harsh language and indicates how severe God is about heresy. False teachers need to be hunted down and “destroyed.” False teaching is a problem to deal with decisively.

speak evil of the things they do not understand

“Speak evil” here means to malign. They love to accuse the truth of error and falsity. They also tarnish salvation by grace. Ignorance is the cause of false teaching because they do not take the Word of God seriously. God does not divulge His truth to false teachers, no matter how brilliant they might be.

1 Co 2:14, “But the natural man [non-Christian] does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”

No matter how much university study a person may have, a non-Christian cannot extract truth from God’s Word as He would have it revealed. He is spiritually dead. That alienation from God makes him an enemy of God. 

Ro 8:7-8, “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. 8 So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.”

No matter what mental horsepower a person might have, the Bible is a closed book to them. The Bible is a book where knowing the Author is a prerequisite to understanding what it says. Once we know the Author, the Bible opens up to us no matter how little education we might have. If we are born again, we have a built-in Bible Teacher, the Holy Spirit.

and will utterly perish in their own corruption

“Corruption” here may be the corruption of eternal damnation. Their teaching puts them in jeopardy of God’s wrath. They have a terrible future (2 Pe 2:1,3). Their only hope is to embrace Jesus as their Savior.


We are to think of false teachers as wild animals who operate with instinctual understanding rather than divine revelation.


The instinct of false teachers is to rest their thinking on something other than divine revelation. They will confuse and distort from the human viewpoint as best as they can. They have an instinct for religion without the mutual exclusive message of Jesus Christ. The instinct of false teachers is to bypass God’s Word in favor of their distorted thinking.

As Christians, we have the Word of God in our hands and the Spirit of God in our hearts; therefore, we can understand and apply the Word of God to our experience. A person who never saw the inside of a university can know more about the Bible’s purpose than a Ph.D. in religion. Anyone can learn how far Jericho is from Jerusalem, but only those who truly know God can know how dark our soul is before God and where the answer lies.