7:15 “Watch out for false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are voracious wolves. 1 7:16 You will recognize them by their fruit. Grapes are not gathered 2 from thorns or figs from thistles, are they? 3 7:17 In the same way, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad 4 tree bears bad fruit. 7:18 A good tree is not able to bear bad fruit, nor a bad tree to bear good fruit. 7:19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 7:20 So then, you will recognize them by their fruit.
1 sn Sheep’s clothing…voracious wolves. Jesus uses a metaphor here to point out that these false prophets appear to be one thing, but in reality they are something quite different and dangerous.
2 tn Grk “They do not gather.” This has been simplified to the passive voice in the translation since the subject “they” is not specified further in the context.
3 sn The statement illustrates the principle: That which cannot produce fruit does not produce fruit.