Year 2 Day 323
Read - Jude 1v5-7
Message - Scott Woodburn
There are some who can’t quite reconcile the God of the Old Testament and the God of the New. In the Old Testament God seems constantly angry while in the New Testament God is constantly loving. My brothers and sisters this thinking isn’t new (nothing is) but is an old heresy called Marcionism. Jude would have had no time for Marcion for as Jude considered the Old Testament he saw the work of Christ.
As Jude speaks against the false teachers who were always seeking “new” things, he takes us on a journey through the Old Testament showing us that Christ was active against all kinds of wickedness. Jude begins by making it clear that his hearers had already heard this teaching. “I want to remind you” says Jude (v5a). Whatever it is Jude is about to say, it has already been said and now a reminder is necessary. Isn’t this the reality for each church? Truth is preached and studied and proclaimed and yet for a multitude of reasons it doesn’t seem to stick. Brother and sisters, listen well to truth, write truth down, commit truth to memory for truth in the church seems to evaporate quickly!
False teachers thrive when truth evaporates but Christ is not ignorant of their schemes - He will certainly punish those who promote falsehood. To underline this, Jude gives three examples from the Old Testament. Firstly Jude reminds us that Christ saved a people our of Egypt but later destroyed those who didn’t believe (v5b). According to Jude, Jesus was instrumental in the exodus out of Egypt but when the people rebelled in the wilderness, it was Christ who destroyed those who didn’t believe.
Secondly Jude recalls that it was and is Christ who has kept the fallen angels in eternal chains in gloomy darkness until the final day (v6). These angels fell with Satan filled with arrogance and rage. They refused to keep the position that the Lord had assigned them to and a suggestion in Revelation hints that a third of the angels fell in the angelic rebellion (Revelation 12v4). Today Satan and his angels are active in the world but we can take comfort from the fact that they are not free to do whatever they want. Christ has placed them in chains and will judge them at the last day.
Finally Jude speaks about the destroyed cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. Christ destroyed these places by fire due to their sexual immorality and unnatural desires (v7). As we recall the story we remember that the men of Sodom wished to rape the angels who had come to urge Lot to flee. The destruction of Sodom, Gomorrah and the surrounding cities was an example of the eternal fire of punishment to come.
False teaching is no small matter. Jude couldn’t be clearer - Christ will judge and punish all manner of sin. It might be the sin of unbelief or the sins of arrogance and pride or the sin of sexual immorality, Christ hates sin, opposes sin and will certainly judge and punish sin. He has in the past and He will certainly do so when He comes.
Brothers and sisters, God’s Word is not immune from attack in this world, indeed it is hated and despised. It is of vital importance that you know what truth is so that you may be well established and grounded in the faith. Bathe regularly in the refreshing stream of truth. Test everything in the penetrating light of God’s Word. Be hesitant to believe those who promise a “new thing”. Demand more of the Word in your life not less. What’s at stake in the battle for truth? Eternity.
Father God, we pray as Christ once prayed, sanctify us by the truth, your word is truth! For Christ’s sake. Amen.
Q79 Which is the tenth commandment? The tenth commandment is, Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s house, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife, nor his man-servant, nor his maid-servant, nor his ox, nor his ass, nor anything that is thy neighbor’s.