¶ There were false prophets among the people even as there shall be false teachers among you: which privily shall bring in damnable sects, even denying the Lord that hath bought them, and bring on their own heads swift damnation, and many shall follow their damnable ways, by which the way of truth shall be evil spoken of, and thorow covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you, whose judgment is not far off, and their damnation sleepeth not.
¶ For if God spared not the angels that sinned but cast them down into hell, and put them in chains of darkness, there to be kept unto judgement: neither spared the old world: but saved Noah the eighte preacher of righteousness, and brought in the flood into the world of the ungodly, and turned the cities of Zodom and Gomor into ashes: overthrew them, damned them, and made of them an ensample unto all that after should live ungodly. And just Lot vexed with the uncleanly conversation of the wicked, delivered he. For he being righteous and dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unrighteous deeds. The Lord knoweth how to deliver the godly out of temptation, and how to reserve the unjust unto the day of judgment for to be punished: namely them that walk after the flesh in the lust of uncleanness, and despise the rulers. Presumptuous are they, and stubborn and fear not to speak evil of them that are in authority. When the angels which are greater both in power and might, receive not of the Lord railing judgement against them. But these as brute beasts, naturally made to be taken and destroyed, speak evil of that they know not, and shall perish through their own destruction, and receive the reward of unrighteousness.
¶ They count it pleasure to live deliciously for a season. Spots they are and filthiness: and of you they make a mockingstock feasting together in their deceivable ways: having eyes full of advoutry, and that cannot cease to sin, beguiling unstable souls. Hearts they have exercised with covetousness. They are cursed children, and have forsaken the right way, and are gone astray following the way of Balaam the son of Bosor, which loved the reward of unrighteousness: but was rebuked of his iniquity. The tame and dumb beast, speaking with man's voice forbade the foolishness of the prophet.
¶ These are wells without water, and clouds carried about of a tempest, to whom the mist of darkness is reserved for ever. For when they have spoken the swelling words of vanity, they beguile with wantonness thorow the lusts of the flesh them that were clean escaped: but now are wrapped in errors. They promise them liberty, and are them selves the bondservants of corruption. For of whomsoever a man is overcome, unto the same is he in bondage. For if they, after they have escaped from the filthiness of the world thorow the knowledge of the Lord, and of the saviour Iesus Christ, they are yet tangled again therein and overcome: then is the latter end worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them, not to have known the way of righteousness, than after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment given unto them. It is happened unto them according to the true proverb: The dog is turned to his vomit again, and the sow after she is washed, is returned to her wallowing in the mire.
© Faith of God
William Tyndale 1526