, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing upon themselves swift destruction. 2 And many will follow their licentiousness, and because of them the way of truth will be reviled. 3 And in their greed they will exploit you with false words; from of old their condemnation has not been idle, and their destruction has not been asleep.
The fact that there have been heresies in no way negates that the gates of hell would not prevail. In fact, it is the false teachers (heresies) that have helped to purify the church, and to bring clarity to doctrinal teaching.
ja4 believes that scripture is the sole rule of faith, and when he compares his reading to what he thinks are Catholic practices, he does not see them line up, therefore assumes that Catholics have fallen into error.Exactly! It’s not that errant teachers don’t appear, (case in point the reformer’s errors) but that they are refuted and the Church does not depart from the faith of the apostles and the early church, which if one examines their teachings alongside the (unabridged) Bible and the ECF as well as the 2,000 years of teachings of the Church, is where one discovers that they did indeed depart.
We still get some squirrels roaming around teaching weird stuff…even today. (Look at the Dimond brothers and whatever anti-popes that are out there!) But notice that the Church is not shaken by them and consistently teaches what she has always taught.