Good verses evil
I will be going over Jude 1:16-25. Jude seems to be going over popular personalities that had center stage and were way off to the point that they were so far away from the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. If you are like the average person being off to the side in life you do not fit in this category as you travel through life; however, this passage is still applicable for you.
It is interesting to me that verse sixteen starts out with these people being murmurers (that is how they spelled this word in that day) or complainers. I have seen many of these people but I never personally made the connection. Their not content with themselves, other people or God. I hope you are starting to see motive.
They walk after their own lusts and may I say without conscience so there is no room for God in their life. If we as Christians walk after our own lusts the presence of the Holy Spirit is less if at all so we would have to repent of our sins. The people that I mentioned at the top of the paragraph don't even care and move to the next step.
They speak great swelling words which is almost a lie every single time. When we as true Christians talk we have to be very honest in a Godly way. We can be honest in a controversial way or at the expense of someone else but that is not acceptable to God. These people at the top of the paragraph just lie. True Christians have been told from the beginning to be honest before God and other people.
They have to move to the next step of becoming mockers and once again Jude repeats himself that it is still because they are walking after their own lusts. This should give us an extra clue that we as Christians are not to be walking after our own lusts.
Jude mentions a third time that they are separating themselves in a sensual way and they don't have the Holy Spirit living inside of them; however, we do and desire His full presence. Jude encourages us to build ourselves in our faith in Jesus Christ in the power of the Holy Spirit. We are also told to keep ourselves in the love of God and look for the mercy of Jesus Christ in our lives. He also keys on compassion and how special that can be especially in a world like this where most people do not even care. Let us Christians be the ones that care for people. Individuals still have a choice to accept or reject Jesus Christ into their lives but that is a different subject.
Jude finally gets to two of the most popular verses at the end of this New Testament book. God desires to keep us from falling and present us faultless ... "Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy."
In the last verse praise is giving to the only wise God our Savior, be glory, majesty, dominion and power both now and forever. I will quote the original text in the book of Jude so you can read this passage and perhaps make reference to it for this particular Bible study.
(16) "These are murmurers, complainers, walking after their own lusts; and their mouth speaketh great swelling words, having men's persons in admiration because of advantage. (17) But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; (18) How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts. (19) These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit. (20) But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Ghost, (21) Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. (22) And of some have compassion, making a difference: (23) And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh. (24) Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, (25) To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen." Jude 1: 16-25.
Jude gets somewhat detailed on the character of these evil men. They are seducers but murmur and complain at the very least on the inside. They have bad character, they are weak but very wicked. They usually are very angry at most situations. The world is almost always wrong and nothing is ever good enough for them. Their will, appetite and fun are all they seem to care about so just be the exact opposite of these people.
The people that Jude was writing to were well taught in the word of God. They had strong faith but the Apostle had to remind them in a convincing way that if they listened to these people their trust in Jesus Christ would turn to self.
We can tell if we are being properly guided if the leaders truly love us as Christians. A hard spirit and bitter words might persuade some people but they have no discernment.
We also need to have faith that in the midst of all this evil Jesus Christ will keep His promises and maintain His church. I noticed that the more Christians are ridiculed or even persecuted the stronger believers in Jesus Christ seem to be armed in a spiritual way because under these trials strength and firmness in Jesus Christ prevail.
Jude seems to imply that these evil people are sensual and do not have the Spirit of God. They are not holy in Jesus Christ. When we see this we should be even more determined to have sound doctrine in Jesus Christ and be of good conversation which is the way we live in the world. We should be all the more determined to continue in truth and holiness.
Let me make this simple. If we already laid our foundation in our faith in Jesus Christ we have to build upon it because that is abiding in Jesus Christ. If we live by the right Godly principles we will stand any test even in a fiery trial under or being influenced by evil men.
Jude also talks about praying in the Holy Ghost. Prayer is our nurse for our faith in Jesus Christ. When we pray in the Power of the Holy Spirit there is a pretty good chance that we will receive guidance and influence from God.
Jude also tells us to keep ourselves in the love of God. If we do this we have to keep ourselves in the ways of God but the key is to continue in the love of Jesus Christ.
Jude also talks about mercy. Eternal life through Jesus Christ is all about compassion. This is our only plea before God because we can not get to heaven by our merit. Jesus Christ is our Redeemer but it is by His mercy that we were saved through His precious blood. These truths are pertinent to remember when we go back to the main theme Jude is trying to portray. A faith that is alive in the Person of Jesus Christ has the advantage to mortifying our lusts we struggle with in life.
Jude directs the strong Christians on how to behave toward believers in Jesus Christ that are steeped in error or people that are just plain false. I am at verse twenty two and twenty three. We should do everything we can to rescue these people out of the bait of Satan. We are our brother's keeper but this involves compassion which makes all the difference in the world for heaven.
Once again I have to put this in this article just similar to a previous writing that was already posted. We have to distinguish between the weak minded/hearted and willful sin.
I have found that tenderness with boundaries is so desired to the weak Christian because this world lacks mercy. When I was young and weak I did not appreciate people especially Christians being harsh or severe to me because it just put me into more of a depression. Being hard to the stumbling Christian when they are trying does not mix with one another because it usually causes more harm than good.
Jude talks about others saved with fear pulling them out of the fire. Should we frighten people out of their sins if they are willful? The answer is yes. I am not saying the person that is not sinning willfully does not have to get right with God through His Son Jesus Christ but there is something spiteful about willful sin. They might have good intentions but lack the fear of God. They need to reclaim their once strong faith in the Son of God. The truth about the conscience is it is like a rubber band. The more we sin the bigger the rubber band expands and at some point it becomes willful.
Jude writes something very perfect after all this by saying ... " Hating even the garment spotted by the flesh." God has such high standards for His children that we are to keep ourselves at a huge distance from what is sin or appears to be evil. We sometimes forget this fact but look at it this way --- if the world demands perfection (and it does) how much more should we desire to please God?
Jude really ends this book by giving glory to our Great God. This is such a positive way to end these last two verses. God is both able and willing to keep us from falling into sin.
Can you imagine if we served a God that desired us to fall into transgressions? Jesus Christ died for our sins on the cross. I personally confess my known and unknown sins every day but I need to make a point. Even on my best day of righteousness in the Person of Jesus Christ my works would still be seen as filthy rags and it would not get me into heaven. What I am saying is I am at fault with my sins before God but in true repentance to God through His Son Jesus Christ my transgressions will not be imputed to my account.
When Jude says ... "Before the presence of His glory" ... doesn't that just put goose bumps in your soul? Jude is going from get your sins right before God because we as Christians are destined to be in His presence of His glory. On earth it is the object of our faith but in heaven it will be the object of our sense. We believe in Him now but we will see Jesus Christ soon in heaven. If we allow Jesus Christ to take care of our sin problem the reason why we can face the Son of God with exceeding joy is because we will be presented faultless before Him. If there is no sin there is no sorrow so why do we mess around with transgressions down here on earth? If we are going to be perfectly holy in Jesus Christ it is pretty obvious that we will have exceeding joy in heaven.
If God loved us so much by sending His Son to die for our sins we should want to try everyday to be holy. Jude concludes that God is worthy to receive glory, majesty, dominion and power to the which I say Amen. We should be giving the Triune Godhead this now but we will be engaged in this forever.
If you are struggling with sins now join the club. Let me ask you a question. Are you sincere about getting right with Jesus Christ by repenting of all your sins? Do you know this takes courage? This is the very least we can do based on what Jesus Christ did for us past tense, is doing for us present tense and does not want our sins imputed to us at the day of judgment future tense. Sin causes hardship but living holy in the Person of Jesus Christ allows us to have a destiny with exceeding joy.
If you have not accepted Jesus Christ as your personal Savior and Lord by repenting of all your sins and inviting the Son of God into your heart I believe Jude puts on a really good case as to why this is eternally pertinent to our life and destiny in Paradise. If you just made that decision be glad but also abide in Jesus Christ and live a holy life. If we sin/sins we need to repent and try our best to forsake our transgressions but remember it is for our exceeding joy in Jesus Christ now and forever in heaven.
God Bless you,