ImmerseMessiah NLT - Flipbook - Page 319
people from their trials, even while keeping the wicked under punishment
until the day of final judgment. He is especially hard on those who follow
their own twisted sexual desire, and who despise authority.
These people are proud and arrogant, daring even to scoff at supernatural beings without so much as trembling. But the angels, who are far
greater in power and strength, do not dare to bring from the Lord a charge
of blasphemy against those supernatural beings.
These false teachers are like unthinking animals, creatures of instinct,
born to be caught and destroyed. They scoff at things they do not understand, and like animals, they will be destroyed. Their destruction is their
reward for the harm they have done. They love to indulge in evil pleasures
in broad daylight. They are a disgrace and a stain among you. They delight
in deception even as they eat with you in your fellowship meals. They
commit adultery with their eyes, and their desire for sin is never satisfied. They lure unstable people into sin, and they are well trained in greed.
They live under God’s curse. They have wandered off the right road and
followed the footsteps of Balaam son of Beor, who loved to earn money
by doing wrong. But Balaam was stopped from his mad course when his
donkey rebuked him with a human voice.
These people are as useless as dried-up springs or as mist blown away
by the wind. They are doomed to blackest darkness. They brag about
themselves with empty, foolish boasting. With an appeal to twisted sexual
desires, they lure back into sin those who have barely escaped from a
lifestyle of deception. They promise freedom, but they themselves are
slaves of sin and corruption. For you are a slave to whatever controls you.
And when people escape from the wickedness of the world by knowing
our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and then get tangled up and enslaved
by sin again, they are worse off than before. It would be better if they had
never known the way to righteousness than to know it and then reject
the command they were given to live a holy life. They prove the truth of
this proverb: “A dog returns to its vomit.” And another says, “A washed
pig returns to the mud.”
This is my second letter to you, dear friends, and in both of them I have
tried to stimulate your wholesome thinking and refresh your memory. I
want you to remember what the holy prophets said long ago and what our
Lord and Savior commanded through your apostles.
Most importantly, I want to remind you that in the last days scoffers will
come, mocking the truth and following their own desires. They will say,
“What happened to the promise that Jesus is coming again? From before
the times of our ancestors, everything has remained the same since the
world was first created.”