E-Message Bible/Commentary

"Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path." --- Psalm 119:105

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JUDE

Who Was Jude?

Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and a brother of James. (Jude 1)

Jude was the brother of James and of Jesus. Like James, Jude did not believe in Jesus until after His death and resurrection. (John 7:5; Acts 1:14)

Jude wrote the short one-chapter book bearing his name. Jude is the last general epistle of the New Testament and next to the last book of the entire Bible. Jude is short, but it has a strong message: Do not let negative influences destroy the church. Jude points out false teachings in the church. He is extremely emphatic and appeals to members of the church to "contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints" (Jude 3). Jude says, "The ungodly are not the heathen outside the church, they are the false teachers inside the church" (Jude 12).

Jude is mostly known for its benediction which tells us that only God can keep us from error and bring us to Himself: "Now to Him who is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to God our Savior, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen" (Jude 24-25)
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Three Blessings From Jude
Mercy, peace and love be yours in abundance. (Jude 2)

Jude is that book of only one chapter consisting of just 25 verses found at the end of the Bible before the book of Revelation. Jude was the brother of Jesus who wrote that short general epistle to encourage saints during the time of false prophesy and persecution. Jude did not mince his words. He pulled out all the stops to unmask the false teachers and to encourage the saints to "contend earnestly for the which which was once for all delivered to the saints" (Jude 3).

This short book is full of triads (things in three's). As early as the second verse, Jude wishes three things for all the saints: mercy, peace, and love.
  • MERCY means God's compassionte comfort and care for His people in times of conflict and stress.
  • PEACE is the serenity and confidence that come from reliance on God's word even in the midst of storms.
  • LOVE is the undeserved embrace of God for us. This super-affection should then be shared with others.

Like Jude, I wish these three blessings be multiplied (not added) unto you.
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Contend Earnestly For the Faith
I felt I had to write and urge you to contend earnestly for the faith that was once entrusted to the saints. (Jude 3)

Jude, the brother of Jesus, urges us to "contend earnestly for the faith."  To contend means to fight for something.  The announcer at a boxing match says, "The contender is this corner is . . ."  In other words, the fighter who is fighting to win is a contender.  We, as Christians, certainly do have something worth fighting for. We must defend the faith that others died to preserve. We are to fight for the message that caused Peter, James, Paul and others to be martyred.  We are to fight for the message that sent Jesus to the cross.  We are to continue the fight that was once entrusted to the saints.  Thankfully, when we fight for the faith, God helps us with our battles. 

Keep in mind, however, this battle is for the faith of our fathers, and we should contend without being contentious.
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Jesus is NOT the Reason for the Season
To the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! (Jude 25)

I don't like cliches! There is nothing holy or sacred about them. They sound so shallow, hollow, empty and without much meaning. Many cliches are not even logical. Some of them have become so worn out they have lost their flavor. This time of year many people don't give much thought to saying, "Jesus is the reason for the season." Yes, it rhymes. Yes, it has a nice rhythm. Yes, it has a nice ring to it, but what does it really mean?

First of all, Christmas is NOT a season. There are only four seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Secondly, to say "Jesus is the reason for the season" gives the impression that Jesus isn't the reason for the rest of the year. Seasons com e and seasons go. However, the purpose for Jesus' birth should permeate through all of them.

We should not limit the importance of Jesus' coming to earth only to this time of year. The holidays will be over and Jesus' coming still will be significant. And if Jesus truly is your reason for celebrating Christmas, here's good news . . . you can celebrate His birth all year long even to the end of the age.

No, Jesus is NOT the reason for THE SEASON. Jesus is the reason for ALL SEASONS, all times; now and forevermore!





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