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Jude 5-16 Devotional

Start by reading Jude 5-16

Last week, we learned that Jude has written to this congregation to urge them to “contend for the faith” in the midst of false teachers surfacing within the church. This week we get a full-on account of what these people were all about. What’s interesting is that the only insight we’re given into what they’re actually teaching, is a brief statement in verse four, indicating that they have taken things that are actually true of the faith and have twisted them into something entirely different. In place of a lecture on what a teacher should or should not say, we get a twelve-verse chunk of God’s Word devoted to the behavior of these false teachers.

Jude masterfully employs the use of classic Old Testament what-not-to-do’s to aid in painting a picture of these offenders of the faith, as well as a couple of texts that might not be familiar to us, but that would have been well-known to the people of the time. We are told that like the rebellious Israelites in Numbers 14, the debased angels in Genesis 6, and the depraved people of Sodom and Gomorrah in Genesis 19, these false teachers “defile the flesh, reject authority, and blaspheme the glorious ones.” (v. 8) We’re also given the examples of Cain (Genesis 4), Balaam (Genesis 22), and Korah (Numbers 16) to correlate to how these people have forsaken their blessed position, given them by God, for the sake of their own temporal gain and satisfaction.

So what are we to do with a text like this? There’s not a single command in here! It’s almost as if Jude is just kind of going off about these people, right? Wrong! Here’s the big idea: Get in, and stay in God’s Word.

These teachers pursued their our own desires apart from the Word of God (vv. 8, 10, 16)
  • The Bible does not paint a pretty picture of what is in our hearts innately (Jeremiah 17:9; Mark 7:21-23)
  • We need God’s word and a work of the Holy Spirit to rectify that (James 4:1, 8)
These teachers will be hard to tell apart! (vv. 4, 12)
  • We will be able to distinguish them by their deeds, and we will know the difference in deeds by remaining in Scripture (Matthew 7:15-16)
They’re going to get what’s coming to them (vv. 5-16)
  • We must stay rooted in God’s Word, persevere, and trust that the Lord will judge righteously (2 Peter 3:16-18)