Jude 1:17 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.
Over the past several years we have been brainwashed by a new idea. We have had politicians and others come out and begin their speeches by acknowledging they are standing on borrowed land. They acknowledge that they are standing on the land that belongs to some native group. This nonsense has come so far that there are those who now believe that it is time to give the land back to the natives. They even state that we are being punished by some “force” for treating the natives so badly.
Natives and non-natives all have the same start. All are born as lost sinners. History shows us that both sides have evil in their past and present. The solution will never be found in all the nonsense taking place today. The solution will be found in preaching the Gospel and people repenting toward God and trusting in the Lord Jesus Christ for salvation.
If we are not careful to read true history we will fall into the trap of revisionists. We will not know the past and we will be brainwashed into the thinking of some smooth talkers who have an agenda.
I believe it is time for born again Christians to remind others and ourselves that we do not belong to ourselves. Paul was directed to write:
I Corinthians 6:19 What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?
20 For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.
True Christians belong to God. We have been bought with a price. Not only that, but the land that we live on belongs to God as well. He created it all. We have a title to our small property. We know the government could come and confiscate this property any time they want to and we would not have any recourse to that. They are usurpers of the land as well. It does not belong to some native group. It belongs to God. Those who are saved, do not worship the land. We worship the God of Creation. We acknowledge His authority and His right over us and over the land. If we keep in mind who we are in Christ, it should make a difference in how we conduct ourselves.
In our text, Jude, having spent the past several verses warning of the danger of apostasy and of apostates, now addresses the saints with a different tone. He is directed to call them beloved once again. He began verse 17 with the word “but”. He is directed to change the tone here. Now he calls on the beloved to remember the words of the Lord Jesus Christ.
You notice here that he calls the Lord Jesus Christ “our”. Jude has a personal connection to the Lord Jesus Christ. He knows Him as His Lord. He is a saved man. We said in our opening that we are not sure which Jude this is of the three mentioned in the New Testament. I believe I stated that I lean toward him being the half-brother of the Lord Jesus Christ. That could still be the case, but there is also room for believing he is one of the apostles. Whatever the case is, he was close enough to the Lord Jesus Christ to have heard His teaching and His warnings.
In verse 18 we are reminded that Jesus warned the disciples that there should be mockers in the last time. Jesus did not say there “would be mockers”. He said there “should be mockers.” If a person rejects the truth, he will be a mocker of the truth. Those who reject the Lord Jesus mock Him every day. Some of them claim to be saved, but they have no testimony of salvation. They live in their sin and are quite content to do so. They mock Jesus by suggesting His death, shed blood, resurrection and ascension was not enough to change them.
Jude tells us that the mockers should walk after their own ungodly lusts. That is the truth. Lost people are selfish people. Some of them may seek to give to some cause they consider worthy. They do it for what they hope to get from it. When you warn them that God is not interested in their “charity”, they take offence. They believe they are doing a good work and that it will be recognized as such by God. Jude reminds us here that this is not the case.
Verse 19 tells us that they separate themselves. They are sensual and they do not have the Spirit. Paul wrote:
Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his.
Those who do not have the Holy Spirit indwelling them are not saved. It does not matter how much they protest, God’s Word is sure. We do not help the lost when we accept their mockery as godliness. We help them by showing them from God’s Word that they are deceived. We help them by pointing them to the truth.
In verse 20 the beloved are commanded to build up ourselves on our most holy faith. This takes us back to verse 3. This holy faith is not my ability to believe something. It is putting my faith in that which is true and real, the faith once delivered unto the saints. Not the “name it and claim it” sham. Jude is talking of real faith here.
We need to be led by the Holy Ghost in our prayers. This is not talking of the heresy of the charismatics who claim that their “tongues” is praying in the Holy Ghost. What it is talking about is being guided by the Holy Ghost to pray according to God’s will. We need the Holy Ghost to guide us in our prayer life. We need to be directed so that we do not “pray amiss”.
In verse 21 we are told to keep ourselves in the love of God. The saved person cannot be lost. We see here that Christians need to make a choice regarding faithfulness to the Lord. No Christian can be happy or at peace if living in rebellion. God’s love is constant. He is not the one that moves. He is righteous. It is we as people who often disobey God.
Jude has been directed to encourage the saints. He has also been directed to warn the saints not to fall into the trap of apostasy. Paul was directed to write about the war that is taking place between the flesh and the spirit in the saved person. Paul was not teaching gnosticism. He was directed by God to remind Christians that the devil is still real even if the person is saved. The devil still wants to interfere in the saved person’s life. We are often reminded in the Scriptures to choose to put off the old man and to put on the new man.
Life is always about choices. Children need to choose whether they will listen to their parents or not. All people need to decide whether they will listen to God or not. It is important to be exposed to the truth from the moment of conception. Children in the womb can hear what is happening outside the womb. They can also get a sense of what is happening because they are inside their mother’s womb. There are many ways in which parents can cultivate a godly environment for their children.
Once a person is saved, they need to choose to follow the God that saved them. They need to be taught the way of blessing. That teaching must come from the Word of God. Human spin needs to be eliminated. Every pastor will have his opinions. A true pastor needs to make it known when he is expressing his opinions and he also needs to teach how he arrived at his opinions.
Every Christian will also have opinions. They also need to know how they arrived at their opinion. God’s Word must be the final authority for every saint. That is why Jude was told to exhort the saints to contend for the faith once delivered unto the saints.
Churches would not be in the mess that many are in today if we would keep that command in mind. The Christian life is not complicated. Jude stated in his closing words that saints need to keep themselves in the love of God. That is not a difficult thing for a true saint. It is a difficult thing when the true saint listens to the flesh. I believe Paul was directed by God to help us to see how we need to live:
Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
True saints need to choose wisely and true saints can choose wisely. God is good all the time!