Updated: Oct 9, 2020
Whilst this IS a bible passage, I think you'll concur that it can be applied to life in general.
"Beware" means to be on alert ... to discern what is being said. False teachers take advantage of the fact that many people are not well educated in not only in fundamental biblical truths, but also the diverse subjects of life. From politics and economics to geology and astrophysics or something relatable to many as stress, pain, loneliness and so on and so forth.
So what can we do to protect ourselves? The wolves certainly don't advertise who they are, but approach you instead, "looking like sheep"!.
Well, discernment is the keyword followed by research and knowledge and don't forget, Learn From Past Mistakes.
I interact with so many people all over the world and from all walks of life and so many keep repeating the same mistakes, mostly because they don't understand what they are doing wrong or even realize they have a pattern they follow that needs to be broken.
Usually those "False Prophets", who prey on you, are rather intelligent BEings, highly educated or simply really well versed on different subjects, depending on what their end goal is. Yes, even those who are Sociopathic or Narcissistic believe it or not. Actually, they are quite organised and methodic in their 'craft'.
So what can you do? Well, if you hang on long enough, you will start to see cracks appearing and you will also notice a behavioural pattern. They also don't like being questioned, they prefer to only be listened to, of course, it's their need to be in control so they can manipulate the situation to their advantage.
They usually prey on the weak. They go after someone who has low self-esteem, or needs some sort of guidance. Spiritual is usually the chosen path. They will lure you in with kindness, they will listen to you attentively, study your state of mind, being and even look up your background. Once they find your weakness, they will go in for the kill, so to speak. You will feel you are receiving answers to what you seek and once they gain your trust, you will believe anything you are told.
This is where discernment must come in.
So how can you stop repeating the same mistakes? Well, first step is becoming aware of what you are doing. Once you realize and acknowledge it is happening, then focus on finding a pattern. It could be different things. Some have problems finishing things they have started, others end up in abusive relationships, some feel depressed and not worthy.
There are so many different issues but the work is the same. Go within your heart. Meditate and ask yourself questions. Why is this happening? Is it something I am doing? Is it the product of my childhood?
You have to go deep inside and really look at yourself, at your life to find out what is making your current situation happen. I know, sometimes it is not easy, is actually quite painful, which is why, many apply blocks either consciously or subconsciously and seek answers outside of themselves, as it is a less painful path.