What does 2 Peter 2:14 mean?
ESV: They have eyes full of adultery, insatiable for sin. They entice unsteady souls. They have hearts trained in greed. Accursed children!
NIV: With eyes full of adultery, they never stop sinning; they seduce the unstable; they are experts in greed--an accursed brood!
NASB: having eyes full of adultery that never cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having hearts trained in greed, accursed children;
CSB: They have eyes full of adultery that never stop looking for sin. They seduce unstable people and have hearts trained in greed. Children under a curse!
NLT: They commit adultery with their eyes, and their desire for sin is never satisfied. They lure unstable people into sin, and they are well trained in greed. They live under God’s curse.
KJV: Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children:
NKJV: having eyes full of adultery and that cannot cease from sin, enticing unstable souls. They have a heart trained in covetous practices, and are accursed children.
Verse Commentary:
This section of Peter's letter is clearly written with passion. He continues to condemn the false teachers at work in the early church. Jesus Himself had given Peter the mission to tend the sheep of God. At times, a shepherd's job includes driving away wild predators (1 Samuel 17:34–35). This naturally comes with some ferocity, and Peter shows in defending his flock from these attacking wolves.

In this verse, Peter writes that these false teachers have eyes full of adultery. The Greek phrase implies a man who sees sex every time he looks at a woman. These deceivers are looking for every opportunity to engage in sexual immorality but are never satisfied, never stopping.

Such people are skilled in the art of seduction and persuasion. This is particularly effective against those in the church who are weak or "unsteady" in their faith, those who are most vulnerable to temptation. In addition, these false teachers have trained their hearts for greed to the point that Peter calls them experts. That is, they have developed the ability to get what they covet by any means necessary.

The verse concludes with Peter's exclamation: Accursed children! This was apparently a well–known Hebrew phrase meaning "children of a curse." This is a crucial point for understanding Peter's meaning in this passage. "Children of a curse," in that time and place, was a reference to those completely damned by God. In other words, in plain and unmistakable terms, Peter sees these false teachers as non-believers. Those who act in such ways do not have a saving faith in Christ (1 John 3:9).
Verse Context:
2 Peter 2:10–22 further describes the sins of the false teachers spreading deception in the early church. Prior verses explained how God judged evil in the past, while saving those who were faithful. This passage describes those who reject Christ in favor of the world as ''enslaved'' by their own sins. No matter what they may claim, such persons prove their spiritual condition by constantly returning to their moral filth.
Chapter Summary:
False teachers had entered the early community of Christians. These deceivers lied to the believers, challenging the authority of Jesus. They also invited others to indulge in their sexual sin. Sadly, there are still versions of these false teachers plaguing the modern Christian community. Peter harshly describes the sins of these ''cursed children,'' the eternal judgment waiting for them, and the tragic impact their deception is having on those enticed by them.
Chapter Context:
In chapter 1, Peter urged his Christian readers not to be unproductive in their knowledge of Jesus. Peter now describes the false teachers in the church who were leading people away from a true understanding of Christ. These deceivers were lying to the believers and encouraging them to indulge in sexual sin. Peter promises that God’s judgment is coming on these ''cursed children'' and details the tragic impact their lies have on anyone who believes them.
Book Summary:
Apparently written shortly before his death in the AD 60s, 2 Peter may have been written to the same audience as 1 Peter, which was Christians scattered by persecution. Peter writes this letter to encourage Christians to live out the purpose of their lives in Christ. He warns readers to beware of teachers who claim to be believers, but present a false version of Christianity. And, Peter calls on all Christians to eagerly watch and wait for the return of the Lord.
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