New Testament Overview: Jude – Written by Jude, the half-brother of Jesus, this letter is an appeal to Christians everywhere to contend for the true faith, and not to let false teachings creep in

Background to the Bible: Christians make the claim that the Bible, as we know it today, is actually God's word written to us. They also claim that it's God's only word to us. But how did the Bible we know today come to be? Speaking the Same Language (Bible Definitions) -- Bible: This word comes from the Greek word Biblos, which means "book". - Covenant: This word refers to an agreement made between two parties. A covenant can be unconditional or conditional. In the Old Testament, there were quite a few covenants made between God and people. The two most important were the covenant between God and Abraham, and the so-called "New Covenant", spoken of in the books of Jeremiah and Ezekiel. Both these covenants were unconditional. Early Christian writers correctly recognized that Jesus, as the promised Savior, was the center of the New Covenant. And so, the biblical writings before Jesus were termed the Old Testament. Naturally, those writings after Jesus were termed the New Testament. Today, a testament is the written will of someone. In early Christian times, a testament was interchangeable with a covenant. - Old Testament: The collection of 39 books written between about 1500 B.C. and 400 B.C. - New Testament: The collection of 27 books written between about 45 A.D. and 95 A.D. - Apocrypha: Seven books which were written during the same time as the Old Testament, but which 1st century Jews recognized were not part of God's word. - Gospel: This word comes from a Greek word meaning "good news". - Inspired: By this word, Christians mean "God-breathed". The idea is that rather than a piece of writing simply being the product of a human mind, an inspired piece of writing is the product of God writing through the conscious efforts of a human. This is how some writings can be seen as the inspired Word of God. [link]

Bible Study – The Book of Jude: In searching for study material on the book of Jude, I was amazed at how much could be gleaned from this little book – It has been described as the “difficult and neglected letter” and I now believe that this is certainly true – It has a lot to say to the modern church; and addresses much of what we call “today’s culture” human rights, and liberty – It also gives guidance as to what role the church should play today – These 25 verses are packed full of spiritual insights and principles; in fact, so much so, that this will be a rather extensive study

Notice in reading Jude 1, the word "sanctified" means "set apart" or "kept". In other words, it means "to all believers". Jude realized that every believer is a potential backslider, and that any of us could fall away from the Lord; so he admonished all of us to watch ourselves and to help others, lest we fall away from God. - Remember the great men in the Bible who fell away - at least for a season: There was Peter, who denied the Lord; David, who went into sin; Solomon, who turned to pagan religions; Samson, who had a weakness for immoral women, etc. ... Let's think for a minute about what it means to be "called by God". We are called to be apostles (Rom. 1:1 - Paul). The Greek word is Apostolos - meaning one who is sent out. The Christian is the ambassador of Christ - sent out into the world to speak, act, and live for Christ. We are also called to be saints (Rom. 1:7; I Cor. 1:2). The word for saint is hagios, commonly translated "holy", the root meaning being "different". To be called to be a saint is to be called to be different, i.e., different from the world; with holy values. The Christian is called according to the purpose of God (Rom. 8:28). God has a plan and purpose for every person who accepts Christ. No Christian can say "I can't do anything"; because God uses our weakness to display His power. God has prepared a task and a purpose for all those He calls. Contentment and satisfaction is working toward the goals that God has set for our lives. ... CONCLUSION: It's hard to believe that 25 verses in this little book have dealt with so much; but I believe we have uncovered the passion that Jude felt for the Church and his fellow Christians. There is so much for us to apply to our lives and in the life of our church. Just think - if every member of your church burned with the passion and zeal shown by Jude - what do you suppose would happen in your city? - In your county, your state, your country? There are four facts emphasized in this book: (1) We know the Lord's coming is sure, (2) We know who will accompany the Lord, (3) We know the purpose of His coming, and (4) We know the result of the Lord's coming. Why do you think Jude wrote this letter? His brother James' epistle deals with good works as an evidence of saving faith; while, in contrast, Jude's letter deals with evil works as evidence of apostasy. I believe the Book of Jude was written as a counter-balance to the Book of James - to show that we must "earnestly contend for the faith" (Jude verse 3) at all times, because there are "tares among the wheat" (Matthew 13:25) (false brethren who have stolen into the Church). This letter was written for the Church, not only for that day, but for us today - for the end times. [link]

Jude’s purpose: To condemn the practice of the false teachers – To condemn the doctrine(s) of the false teachers – To encourage the true believers to stand firm and contend for the faith – His message: Direct exhortation to believers to fight [stand firm and contend] for the Truth – Originally he [Jude] thought he would write them concerning our salvation – However, while he was still considering what to say, he was informed about a group of false teachers who had begun to infiltrate the church – They were using grace as an excuse to live godless lives – He decided that he must write them immediately and urgently – The false teachers were using the doctrine of grace as an excuse to live godless and immoral lives – In addition to the practical [Paganism] error, they were also denying [Jesus] Christ – Therefore, Jude wrote out of urgent concern for the [wellbeing of the] Saints

Jude's answer to the teaching of the false teachers is based on three instances when God judged drastically those who sinned against Him. -- ISRAEL's UNBELIEF => DISOBEDIENCE: First, he uses the case of Israel at Kadesh-Barnea. God judged some of His own redeemed people, whom He had delivered out of Egypt when they did not believe and disobeyed Him. God destroyed His people who did not believe. ANGELS: REBELLION => INSUBORDINATION - Second, God even judged the angels. Rather than recognize the position of privilege God had given them, they left their proper place [heaven] and sought to establish themselves elsewhere [earth]. God bound for judgment the angels who abandoned their proper place. They rebelled against God's authority and sought to establish their own. Sounds more like Satan's sin than Genesis 6 (compare Ezek. 28 and Is. 14) {Jude is referring to Genesis 6} therefore, they were confined in darkness and await judgment. - SODOM AND GOMORRAH: PERVERSION - Finally, the perversion of Sodom and Gomorrah caused their immediate physical destruction. God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah and other cities for immorality. They are examples of the eternal punishment which awaits those who follow their lifestyle. Those who use grace as an excuse for sin commit all three offenses. They refuse to believe God. They rebel against His authority. They practice immorality and perversion. Therefore they may expect similar consequences. -- DESCRIPTION OF THE FALSE TEACHERS 8-16 Having warned them of the danger of the false teachers' course, Jude describes the false teachers. THEIR REBELLION 8-11 - Four examples are given to emphasize the importance of submission to the authority God has established (8-11). The Archangel Michael is mentioned **as a positive example of submission (8-10). Michael recognized Satan as a superior {or equal} creature to himself, by divine order at creation. Therefore, instead of rebuking or accusing him directly, he left that in God's hands. By way of contrast, **the false teachers reject authority they don't even understand. [Use of non-biblical literature: Verse 9 - Assumption of Moses Verses 14-15 -Enoch Use of a source neither documents its authenticity nor its reliability. Compare Paul's use of Greek philosophers and poets. Inspiration only authenticates the contents of the passage cited as there interpreted-no more! He includes this here because its true, not because it's in the source cited!]. -- Three negative illustrations of failure to obey God are presented. Cain - Rejected revelation {the proper Biblical animal sacrifice to God} 11a Tries to worship his own way, rather than God's way. Finally kills his brother rather than repent and submit. Balaam - *Greed 1:11b Puts *personal profit before seeking to do what would please God. Korah - Rebellion 11c Rebels against God's designated authority. **Tries to intrude into office, ignoring the authority God has established. Each of these was judged by God for his disobedience. **These **false teachers [today] **do the same things, therefore, they can expect the same results. THEIR CHARACTER 12-13 Jude next uses several illustrations to demonstrate the true character of these false teachers. They are useless and destructive! [link]

Jude 1 – The epistle (letter) of Jude – Jude begins to write a letter to fellow Christians rejoicing in their common Salvation in Jesus Christ – However as Jude begins to write the Holy Spirit impresses upon him to instead write a letter of exhortation encouraging fellow Christians to resist selfish and false teachers and to stand fast in the Christian faith of Jesus Christ — ‘Jude 1:1-4 Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called: Mercy unto you, and peace, and love, be multiplied. Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and **denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.’

The Bible's book of Jude concludes: Jude 1:5-25 I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, he hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day. Even as Sodom and Gomorrha, and the cities about them in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire. Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities. Yet Michael the Archangel, when contending with the Devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him [Satan] a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee [Satan]. **But these [false teachers] speak evil of those [spiritual] things which they know not: but what they know naturally [physically], as brute beasts, in those things they corrupt themselves. **Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward, and perished in the gainsaying of Core (Korah - Numbers 16:1-2). These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead [lit. already twice dead - born again, rejected God, dead again], plucked up by the roots; Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever. And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh [2nd Coming, 8th Kingdom on earth] with ten thousands of His Saints, To execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed, and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him. 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. But, beloved, remember ye the Words which were spoken before of the Apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ; How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts. These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the [Holy] Spirit. ***But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most Holy Faith, praying in the Holy [Spirit] Ghost, Keep yourselves in the love of God, ***looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. And of some [lost souls and backsliders] have compassion, making a difference: And others [lost souls and backsliders] save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating {their evil ways and vile practices} even the garment spotted by the flesh. {Doxology Begins} Now unto Him [Jesus Christ] that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen {Doxology Ends}.

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