2 Peter 2:17–22 (ESV)
False Prophets and Teachers
17 These are waterless springs and mists driven by a storm. For them the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved. 18 For, speaking loud boasts
of folly, they entice by sensual passions of the flesh those who are barely escaping from those who live in error. 19 They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption. For whatever overcomes a person,
to that he is enslaved. 20 For if, after they have escaped the defilements of the world through the knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, they are again entangled in them and overcome,
the last state has become worse for them than the first. 21 For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them.
22 What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.”
Our Lord says, “In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world” (Jn 16:33; cf 2Pt 2:9). The devil, the world, and our own sinful nature are
ever seeking to overcome us through our tribulations (see SC, Sixth Petition, pp xxxviii–xxxix). The way of escape is through His Holy Word and Sacraments, for this is how He strengthens and keeps us firm in His Word and faith (see SC, Third Petition,
I pray: O Lord, having overcome the world, come to me and give me the strength to endure patiently the trials that afflict me and finally to
overcome them and win the victory. Amen.