1 But prophets who were not true were also among the people of Israel. Also there will be teachers who will not be true among you. They will bring in wrong teaching that leads to death. They will even say that they do not belong to the Master who bought them. And so they will quickly bring themselves to death.
2 Many people will do the same wrong things they do. And because of them, men will say wrong things about the true way.
3 Because they are greedy for money, they will trick you with lies. For a long time God has planned to punish them. They will be punished at the right time.
4 God punished the angels who did wrong. He put them into the darkest part of hell. They must be kept there until the time when they will be judged.
5 In the days long ago, God punished the world. But he saved Noah who told people what was right. And God saved seven other people. But he made water cover the world full of bad people.
6 God burned up the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. He punished them so that no cities were left. He did this to show what would happen to bad people.
7 But God saved Lot out of the trouble. Lot was a good man. He did not like the wrong way the bad people lived.
8 That good man lived among the bad people and he saw and heard what they did. Day after day, the bad things they did troubled his heart because he was a good man.
9 The Lord knows how to save good people out of the trouble that tests them. And he knows how to keep bad people until the day when he will judge them. And they are being punished even now.
10 Most of all, he will punish people who do the wrong things they want to do and who will not obey the men who rule over them. They are very bold and proud. They do not fear to say wrong things about those who are great, even about the angels.
11 Angels have more strength and power than they. And yet the angels do not judge them and say wrong things about them to the Lord.
12 These people are like animals that cannot think. They are like animals that are born to be caught and killed. They say wrong things about things they do not understand. They will die like the animals.
13 Bad things will happen to them because they have done wrong things. They think it is fun to have a good time during the day. They are like spots and sores. They like to eat and drink at the love feasts with you. They are trying to fool you.
14 They are always looking for women to have sex with them. They never stop their wrong ways. They fool people whose hearts are not strong to do right. They always want more and more money. Gods curse is on them!
15 They have left the right road and have done wrong. They follow the same road that Balaam walked. He was the son of Beor. He loved the pay he would get for doing a wrong thing.
16 But he was told to stop doing wrong. The animal he was riding talked with a mans voice. It tried to make the prophet stop his foolish way.
17 These men are like wells with no water in them. They are like fog that is blown away by a strong wind. A very dark place has been kept to put them in.
18 They say big and foolish things. They fool people who have just left those who live in wrong ways. They fool them by making them want to do wrong things with their bodies.
19 They promise them that they will be free. But they themselves are slaves of death. A man is a slave of anything that rules over him.
20 They left the wrong ways of the world because they knew our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Then when they went back to the wrong ways again, they were ruled by them. Then they will have more trouble than they had at first.
21 It would have been better for them if they had never known the right way! Because they knew the right way, it was very wrong for them to turn from the holy law God gave them.
22 They show that this saying is true, The dog goes back to eat what his own stomach threw up! and, A pig that is washed rolls in the mud again!