1 Still, false prophets did appear among the People, as among you also there will be false teachers, men who will insinuate destructive heresies, even disowning the Lord who ransomed them; they bring rapid destruction on themselves, 2 and many will follow their immorality (thanks to them the true Way will be maligned); 3 in their lust they will exploit you with cunning arguments ??men whose doom comes apace from of old, and destruction is awake upon their trail.
4 For if God did not spare angels who had sinned, but committing them to pits of the nether gloom in Tartarus, reserved them under punishment for doom: 5 if he did not spare the ancient world but kept Noah, the herald of righteousness, safe with seven others, when he let loose the deluge on the world of impious men: 6 if he reduced the cities of Sodom and Gomorra to ashes when he sentenced them to devastation, and thus gave the impious an example of what was in store for them, 7 but rescued righteous Lot who was sore burdened by the immoral behaviour of the lawless 8 (for when that righteous man resided among them, by what he saw and heard his righteous soul was vexed day after day with their unlawful doings) ??9 then be sure the Lord knows how to rescue pious folk from trial, and how to keep the unrighteous under punishment till the day of doom, 10 particularly those who fall in with the polluting appetite of the flesh and despise the Powers celestial. Daring, presumptuous creatures! they are not afraid to scoff at the angelic Glories; 11 whereas even angels, superior in might and power, lay no scoffing charge against these before the Lord. 12 But those people! ??like irrational animals, creatures of mere instinct, born for capture and corruption, they scoff at what they are ignorant of; and like animals they will suffer corruption and ruin, 13 done out of the profits of their evil-doing. Pleasure for them is revelling in open daylight ??spots and blots, with their dissipated revelling, as they carouse in your midst! ??14 their eyes are full of harlotry, insatiable for sin; their own hearts trained to lust, they beguile unsteady souls. Accursed generation! 15 they have gone wrong by leaving the straight road, by following the road of Balaam son of Bosor, who liked the profits of evil-doing ??16 but he got reproved for his malpractice: a dumb ass spoke with human voice and checked the prophet's infatuation.
17 These people are waterless fountains and mists driven by a squall, for whom the nether gloom of darkness is reserved. 18 By talking arrogant futilities they beguile with the sensual lure of fleshly passion those who are just escaping from the company of misconduct ??19 promising them freedom, when they are themselves enslaved to corruption (for a man is the slave of whatever overpowers him). 20 After escaping the pollutions of the world by the knowledge of our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ, if they get entangled and overpowered again, the last state is worse for them than the first. 21 Better had they never known the Way of righteousness, than to know it and then turn back from the holy command which was committed to them. 22 They verify the truth of the proverb: "The dog turns back to what he has vomited, the sow when washed will wallow in the mire."