False Prophets and Teachers
But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Master, the One having bought them, and bringing upon themselves swift destruction. And many will follow after their debaucheries, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. And by covetousness they will exploit you with fabricated words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction will not sleep.
The Doom of False Teachers
For if God did not spare the angels when they sinned, but rather confined them to Tartarus, and delivered them into chains of darkness, reserved for judgment; and did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, the eighth, a preacher of righteousness, when He brought a flood upon the ungodly world; and reducing the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes, He condemned them to destruction, having made them an example who were to be ungodly, and He rescued righteous Lot, who was oppressed by the indecent conduct of lawless men (for that righteous man, living among them day after day, tormented his righteous soul by seeing and hearing their lawless deeds)— then the Lord knows how to deliver the godly out of temptation and how to keep the unjust under punishment for the Day of Judgment, 10 and especially those who walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness and despise authority. They are bold, self-willed, illustrious persons, they do not tremble at blaspheming, 11 whereas angels, being greater in might and in power, do not bring a slanderous judgment against them before the Lord.
The Depravity of False Teachers
12 But these, as unreasoning natural animals, having been born for capture and destruction, blaspheme at things which they are ignorant of, and shall be destroyed in their destruction, 13 receiving the wages of unrighteousness, counting as a pleasure to revel in the daytime, they are spots and blemishes, reveling in their deceptions while they feast with you, 14 having eyes full of adultery and unable to cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having a heart having been trained in greediness, they are accursed children. 15 They have left behind the straight way and have gone astray, having followed after the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; 16 but he was rebuked for his own lawlessness: a dumb donkey speaking with the voice of a man restrained the madness of the prophet.
17 These are waterless wells, clouds being driven by a storm, for whom the darkness of the netherworld has been reserved forever.
The Deceptions of False Teachers
18 For when they speak haughty words of emptiness, they entice through the lusts of the flesh, through lewdness, those who have actually escaped from those who are living in error, 19 promising to them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom anyone has been defeated, by this one also he has been enslaved. 20 For if having escaped from the corruptions of the world by the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, yet by these, having become entangled they are defeated, the latter end has become worse for them than the first. 21 For it was better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than knowing it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them. 22 But it has happened to them according to the saying of the true proverb: “A dog returns to his own vomit,” and, “A sow, having washed, returns to her wallowing in the mire.”