2 Furthermore, the sharp warning against errorists and heretics (xvi.
15-16) leads, by way of contrast, to a sharp prophetic warning against contemporary errorists (iv.
The errorists developed speculations and practical theories on the basis of the Old Testament law, which proved extremely seductive to many Christians.
The Ophites are said to have not only used myths but forbidden marriage and held that the resurrection was purely spiritual (Lightfoot); this, however, is probably no more than an interesting coincidence, and all attempts to identify the errorists definitely must be abandoned.'
The method resembles that of the First Epistle of John, for although the errorists attacked in the latter manifesto are not those of the pastorals, and although the one writer eschews entirely the inner authority of the Spirit which the other posits, the same anti-gnostic emphasis on practical religion and stereotyped doctrine is felt in both.