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10 But these men do not understand the things they slander, and they are being destroyed by the very things that, like irrational animals, they instinctively comprehend.[a] 11 Woe to them! For they have traveled down Cain’s path,[b] and because of greed[c] have abandoned themselves[d] to[e] Balaam’s error; hence,[f] they will certainly perish[g] in Korah’s rebellion.

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  1. Jude 1:10 tn Or “they should naturally comprehend.” The present tense in this context may have a conative force. sn They instinctively comprehend. Like irrational animals, these false teachers do grasp one thing—the instinctive behavior of animals in heat. R. Bauckham (Jude, 2 Peter [WBC], 63) notes that “Though they claim to be guided by special spiritual insight gained in heavenly revelations, they are in fact following the sexual instincts which they share with the animals.” Jude’s focus is somewhat different from Peter’s: Peter argued that, like irrational animals who are born to be caught and killed, these men will be destroyed when destroying others (2 Pet 2:12). Jude, however, does not mention the destruction of animals, just that these false teachers will be destroyed for mimicking them.
  2. Jude 1:11 tn Or “they have gone the way of Cain.”
  3. Jude 1:11 tn Grk “for wages.”
  4. Jude 1:11 tn The verb ἐκχέω (ekcheō) normally means “pour out.” Here, in the passive, it occasionally has a reflexive idea, as BDAG 312 s.v. 3. suggests (with extra-biblical examples).
  5. Jude 1:11 tn Or “in.”
  6. Jude 1:11 tn Grk “and.” See note on “perish” later in this verse.
  7. Jude 1:11 tn The three verbs in this verse are all aorist indicative (“have gone down,” “have abandoned,” “have perished”). Although the first and second could be considered constative or ingressive, the last is almost surely proleptic (referring to the certainty of their future judgment). Although it may seem odd that a proleptic aorist is so casually connected to other aorists with a different syntactical force, it is not unparalleled (cf. Rom 8:30).