Contending for the Faith
CONTENDING FOR THE FAITH
Fighting my Spiritual Warfare
Contending: to strive or vie in contest or rivalry or against difficulties : STRUGGLE
Faith: firm belief in something for which there is no proof (2): complete trust
The substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.
Scripture: Jude 1 – 4 and Matthew 17:20
Jude’s letter begins and ends with very comforting words to God’s people. In verse 1 it describes to us as “those who are called, loved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ. All three of these verbs are passive. They stress action of God. God calls, God loves, and God keeps. We are called, are loved, are kept. Jude is very eager to begin by stressing the security of the believer in God’s electing and preserving love.
Then at the end of his letter in verse 24 he says, “Now unto him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy. Notice, in verse 1 we are kept by God for Jesus Christ. And verse 24 God is able to keep us from falling. Jude begins and ends the letter by assuring us that God exerts his omnipotence to keep them from falling away from the faith.
So what should we answer when someone asks you how can you be so sure you will keep the faith to the end and be saved at the time of judgment? We should say something like this: “God has called me out of unbelief. Therefore I know that he loves me with a particular electing love. Therefore I know that he will keep me from falling. He will work in me that which is pleasing in his sight, and present me with rejoicing before the throne of his glory.
Fighting for the Faith
In the middle his concern is different. It is not to help the believers feel content, but to help them feel vigilant (alertly watchful especially to avoid danger). Having shown them the electing love of God and the unsurpassed power of God to keep them safe, Jude now shows then the danger that surrounds them. And tells...