Summary: An overall outlook on the letter from Jude to the church, touching several of the subjects brought forth in this letter. An introductory sermon to a verse by verse study of the letter.
Date Written: June 25, 2014
Date Preached: June 25, 2014
Where Preached: OPBC (Wed - PM)
Series Title: A Study on the Book of Jude
Sermon Title: An overall outlook
Sermon Text: Jude 1:1-25 [ESV]
Essence of the Text: Jude warned of false teachers and encouraged his readers to strive for holiness…
Essence of the Sermon: This passage warns us of false teachers and encourages us to strive for holiness in our walk with God…
Objective of the Sermon: False teaching is REAL, and we may not see it right away, but we must be vigilant in seeking God’s truth.
So what can we learn from the book of Jude? Well before we dive into the actual passage, I want us to look at the book in general so that we understand the background and the pertinant facts about this letter…
First of all the date of the letter is not known for sure, but scholars have indicated it was definitely written prior to AD70 mainly because it does not mention the destruction of Jerusalem…and surely something about that would have been mentioned… Some say between AD60-64 but we cannot know for sure.
Another aspect about this letter is the identity of the author. He identifies himself as Jude and when we look through Scripture we actually find six (6) Jude’s who ‘could’ be the author, but in reality only 2 of these ‘Judes’ truly have a claim on authorship.
FIRST, many look to Jude (or Judas) the brother of Jesus as mentioned in Matt 13:55…
The author never claims any direct Apostolic authority like Peter or Paul… he also indicates in v17 that the group known as the disciples or Apostles did not include Jude.
With that in mind we must believe that the author was Jude (or Judas) the half brother of Jesus as he never claimed apostolic authority… and we also see the author acknowledging his brother “James” in the 1st part of the letter. We cannot be sure why Jude did not proclaim more loudly that Jesus was his brother… but he did not use that to promote himself.
Next we can see that this letter and the 2nd letter from Peter to the church are very similar. Peter does seem to be looking forward to many false teachers coming on the scene while Jude seems to indicate that the false teachers are a thing that has happened already…
Although it appears Peter’s book came first, most theologians and scholars have Jude as the letter written first. Both letters deal with false teaching and God’s judgment.
Overall Jude is a letter dealing with false teachers and avoiding any false heresy that is being taught. He speaks of God’s judgment but he does not call on church members to confront or discipline the false teachers – he simply calls on believers to AVOID this sort of teaching.
Jude uses a poetic imagery in his writing and likes to arrange his comments into groups of three (3) like in v1 where he calls those of the church, 1)called; 2)sanctified & 3) preserved…
His main focus is to avoid heresy and to strive for holiness and purity in oru walk with Christ! Let’s tackle the verses…
v1 [read verse] Jude identifies himself and his place in the kingdom. A ‘bondservant’ or a ‘slave’ of Jesus Christ! If this sounds familiar it is exactly how Paul introduced himself in his letters to the churches.
He also identifies himself with his brother, James. The ‘James’ mentioned here is the brother of Jesus along with Jude. They are mentioned in Matt 13:55 and this James is believed to be the leader of the Jerusalem church before he is martyred
He goes onto address his audience calling them ‘those who are called’ in other words ‘set aside’ by God for His purpose. The Greek word he uses here is klay-toss which literally means a divine invitation to join with…
We have a divine invitation to be part of those who are called by God. They are 1st called by God, but then Jude says they are also sanctified by God, meaning that His love shapes us and molds our character to become more and more like Him. Another translation of this verse indicates that we are called and BELOVED by God… Finally the believers are called, beloved and also perserved in Christ!
Preserved in Christ is the solid and unshakable promise of God that when we are in His hand… NO one can take us from Him… not even our own downfall! The church is called, beloved and preserved in Christ, but then in v2 Jude says: