I was led to read the letter of Jude recently. Jude is urgent in his purpose to warn Christians against false teachers. As followers of Jesus we are to fight with everything we have for the faith.
I have to write insisting-begging!-that you fight with everything you have in you for this faith entrusted to us as a gift to guard and cherish. (Jude 3 The Message)
This is a message to the Church today that is on God’s heart and He has led me many times to warn and remind many in the body of Christ to beware of false teachers.
Because the stakes are so high, even though you’re up-to-date on all this truth and practice it inside and out, I’m not going to let up for a minute in calling you to attention before it. This is the post to which I’ve been assigned-keeping you alert with frequent reminders-and I’m sticking to it as long as I live. (2 Peter 1:12-14 The Message)
So here I go again!
As I was reading Jude, I was reminded of a letter to the Church written May 2021.
I will not share the whole letter because what is urgent on God’s heart is the word, “Work out your own Salvation with fear and trembling.” (Phil 2:12b NKJV)
Letter to the Church of Jesus Christ
May 16, 2021
Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. I thank God always for you, brothers and sisters because I see your faith growing exceedingly, and the love of every one of you all is abounding toward each other. Through all your trials and afflictions, you are persevering and not losing courage under pressure.
Heb 10:25 says to exhort one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching! Romans 15:4 says, “For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope.”
The Lord is impressing upon the hearts of many in the body of Christ Eph 5:25b-27.
Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should by holy and without blemish. (Eph 5:25b-27 NKJV)
Revelation 19:7 says that the bride has prepared herself.
I want to share with you some words and scriptures that I believe God is speaking to His Church in this season to encourage us to remain steadfast, persevering, and obedient.
1. “Work out your own Salvation with fear and trembling.” (Phil 2:12b NKJV) The Lord is saying to spend time with Him and hear for yourself what the Spirit has to say to the Church. There are a lot of false prophets and teachers out there so be careful what you are listening to. Listening to sermons, teachings and reading devotionals does not replace the time that we need to spend with God in His Word. Jesus wants intimacy with His bride and is imploring His Church to return to her first love-Jesus!
Jude describes false teachers as ungodly men who creep in unnoticed turning the grace of our God into total debauchery, unashamed indecency, unbridled lust and unrestrained depravity. They deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ and are therefore designed for divine judgement. (v. 4) They are called dreamers who defile the flesh, live immoral lives, defy authority and speak evil of supernatural beings. (v.8) They are murderous, greedy and rebellious. (v. 11) These people are grumblers and complainers, living only to satisfy their desires. They brag loudly about themselves, and they flatter others to get what they want. (v. 16)
This is how Jude describes false teachers and their effects on a Christian community in vs 12-13.
12 When these people eat with you in your fellowship meals commemorating the Lord’s love, they are like dangerous reefs that can shipwreck you. They are like shameless shepherds who care only for themselves. They are like clouds blowing over the land without giving any rain. They are like trees in autumn that are doubly dead, for they bear no fruit and have been pulled up by the roots. 13 They are like wild waves of the sea, churning up the foam of their shameful deeds. They are like wandering stars, doomed forever to blackest darkness. (Jude 12-13 NLT)
So I exhort, urge, insist, beg you to listen to this word and purpose in your heart to take responsibility to contend earnestly for the faith. Here are some practical exhortations from the letter of Jude and from the letter to the Church.
There is good news for us, the Church of Jesus Christ. The letter of Jude begins and ends with God’s promise to preserve (keep, take care of, protect) us!
To those who are called, sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ (Jude 1 NKJV)
Now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into His glorious presence without a single fault. (Jude 24 NLT)
I encourage you to open up your bible and read for yourself the letter of Jude, 1 Peter, 2 Peter and Galatians. Read them in different versions. Be blessed, encouraged, challenged, exhorted and hopefully even convicted!
All glory to Him who alone is God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord. All glory, majesty, power, and authority are His before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time! Amen. (Jude 25 NLT)
“He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches...” Rev 2:7
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