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Little Book, Big Message: Jude May 20, 2012 Text: Jude Key Thought: We must follow through on God’s call by living a life that follows Jesus ever more closely. But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit, and await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will bring you eternal life. In this way, you will keep yourselves safe in God’s love. (Jude)
Jude wrote to believers in crisis. Opponents were corrupting the church. They had turned the grace of God into license for sex, power, and greed. Jude reminds his readers that just as God judges rebels in the past, he would execute dark, fiery, eternal judgement on all the ungodly people in the present. Jude weaves together arguments from OT literature, as well as references to intertestamental literature, to illustrate the justice of God. Due to the influence of these opponents, Jude implores his readers to contend for the faith. To contend, one must know his enemy, know his faith, and rest in the security of God's eternal salvation. (NOTE: This sermon was preached under the effects of a racking cough and fever. Jude is often referred to as James, and several lines of thinking are incomplete. Sorry!)
Jude urges us to contend for the faith once for all entrusted to God's people. James urges us to follow Jesus in suffering, through good works as we live together in the gospel.