Summary: How are we to overcome the heresies and temptations of the world. Jude just does,t tell us about the problems, he list the solution and tells us to snatch others from the fire.
We live in uncertain times. We live in a world that reimagines truth as something fluid. Oprah Winfrey speaks of “your truth,” and the world is mesmerised by what they imagine is her depth of insight. Of course, all such talk of truth as fluid is foolish. Water still freezes at 32 degrees F and boils at 212 degrees F at SL. The Laws of Thermodynamics still prevail regardless of what anyone thinks, and the We still purchase a plane ticket expecting that the pilot and co-pilot hold to the truth that directions are true—north is still north, and south is still south. We expect that the neurologist will not amputate our great toe because we are having migraines. Yet, in so many areas of life we imagine that truth is flexible, twisting and turning to fit our feelings at some given time; The world would love to enter into dialogue with the Christian, as if we are amenable to changing our understanding of truth.
Changing economies, flexible truth. This is the world we live in. How many people get unsolicited phone calls (robo calls) wanting to sell you something, or more than likely con you out of something? There are those who will take all your money and you’ll never see or hear from them again. Any of this sounds familiar?
What are we to believe? Who are we to believe? The world is full of uncertainties. There are those in the church that are no better. Jude’s little letter sounds a big warning against such.
Jude 4 (NKJV) For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.
We spent the last 4 Sundays describing these that would lead us astray and we look at their demise. So just how are we to persevere? What is our plan?
Jude 20–21 (NKJV) But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.
You can see the concern in Jude. He is clearly addressing the true believers here. Jude calls them - Beloved – Dear friends in HCSB and NIV
These two verses are key to living in a world full of false teaching and those who would try to destroy the church.
Breaking down these two verse we are given 4 commands
1. building yourselves up on your most holy faith
2. praying in the Holy Spirit, Thereby doing these we can:
3. keep yourselves in the love of God, and
4. looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life
Jude represented well the biblical tension between divine sovereignty and human responsibility. On the one hand, believers only avoid apostasy because of the grace of God. On the other hand, the grace of God does not cancel out the need for believers to exert all their energy to remain in God’s love.
Let’s examine these: The sentence structure is a little different here in the Greek, for in the Greek the main command is
3. keep yourselves in the love of God
We stay in His Love by building up in the faith and praying and the Holy Spirit – more on this in a minute. In John gospel, Jesus tells us to abide in Him:
John 15:5 (NKJV) “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.
We are to keep ourselves firmly in the love of God. I saw a statement on Facebook the other day commenting on the school shooting last week. God was asked, “Why would you let this happen?” and the answer was “You kicked me out years ago.” We have a world that has kicked God to corner and we wonder why bad things happen? The world has abandoned the love of God. Little wonder here why Jude says we need to stay in the love of God.
And how do we do that? Let’s look at what Jesus says:
John 15:9–10 (NKJV) “As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love.
Obedience. We obey His commandments. We do those things we know He wants us to do.
1 John 2:5 (NKJV) But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.
We keep His word. Now here the key. How do we know His word? How do we know His commandments? By: