Blessed Generation

Last week we began Authentic, a new study on Remaining Authentic in our Christian faith. This week, we continue to look at the epistle of Jude as it shares how Authentic faith requires that we Dive Deep into God’s word and apply the Biblical truths that are revealed within its pages. Jude is the brother of James and half-brother of our Lord. Since this letter is written to a general audience, the church in mass, Jude doesn’t mention any specific readers. However, he does state the purpose of his letter in our pericope today. Thus, we find in our passage, offering four requirements for us to remain Authentic as we Dive Deep, they are: Cognizant, Agonize, Examine, Analyze. 

Today, let’s consider, Are you Cognizant of Salvation’s Blessings? (Jude 3a-b) Did you know that salvation has blessings for us? Paul writes in Ephesians 1:3~ Blessed (εὐλογητός eulogētos) be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed (εὐλογέω eulogeō) us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, (ESV). We have been given spiritual blessings because we are in Christ and that means we have been saved. So Paul, what blessings? Bless here is (εὐλογέω eulogeō), it gives us eulogy—celebrate with praises, to invoke blessings to consecrate a thing with solemn prayers. God invites us into an eternity long relationship and then He bestows blessings on us. Tell me more.

Ephesians 1:4~ just as He chose us in Him…(NKJ). 

Ephesians 1:5~having predestined us to adoption as sons (daughters)…(NKJ). 

Ephesians 1:6~…His grace, by which He made us accepted… (NKJ).

Ephesians 1:7~In Him we have redemption through His blood…(NKJ).

Ephesians 1:7~…the forgiveness of sins…(NKJ).

Ephesians 1:8-10~…in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, (NKJ).

Ephesians 1:11~In Him also we have obtained an inheritance…(NKJ).

Ephesians 1:13-14~In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance…(NKJ). This is by no means an exhaustive list but we must understand that our only access to these spiritual blessings is found in Jesus. Today, why not take the time to write out some of the spiritual blessings you have received in Jesus. I bet it will set you on a path to a great time of praising and worshiping God today.

Sharing our faith

He Meets Our Needs. God meets all of our needs. Listen to Paul in Philippians 4:19~And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus. (NIV) Jude, what is your prayer for the saints? Jude 2~May mercy (ἔλεος eleos), peace, and love be multiplied to you. (ESV) How do you pray for those who are around and engaged in your life? (ἔλεος eleos) mercy means compassion and it also means we don’t get what we deserve. That’s why we teach our kids that grace is not getting what you deserve. We must have God’s mercy and grace to receive salvation instead of the eternal condemnation we deserve. Moreover, we need mercy throughout our Christian lives because we all occasionally are guilty of sin in both attitudes and actions. 

At those times, we can approach God’s throne of grace and receive mercy. Hebrews 4:16~Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (ESV) Jude 2~May mercy, peace (εἰρήνη eirēnē), and love be multiplied to you. (ESV) (εἰρήνη eirēnē) peace refers to inner tranquility or calmness during the problems and difficulties of life. This peace passes all human understanding and guards our hearts and minds during difficult times Philippians 4:7. Jude 2~May mercy, peace, and love (ἀγάπη agapē) be multiplied to you. (ESV) Love reminds us of Christ’s love. He demonstrated this when He died on the cross for our sins. Revelation 1:5~and from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood. (NIV) 

Our Takeaway: Are you sharing God’s wondrous power of love? Listen again to Jude pray: Mercy unto you, and peace, and love, be multiplied. This ought to be the s desire of all who have accepted Jesus Christ. That we would share that God is able, to meet all of our needs (Philippians 4:19) through His mercy, His peace, and His great love. Jude shares how God does four wonderful things for us: He Sanctifies, Keeps, Calls, and Meets our every need.

Keep Watch

He Keeps us. We are preserved in Jesus Christ Jude 1~Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved (τηρέω tēreō) in Jesus Christ, and called: (KJV) The word (τηρέω tēreō) preserved means to guard against loss or to maintain. We can rest easy in Christ, knowing our salvation is kept safe in heaven by His omnipotent hand. 1 Peter 1:4~and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you, (NIV) This is the Wondrous Power of God: He Sanctifies us for His divine purpose, He Keeps us by the Power of Jesus Christ who sacrificed to give us life and a relationship, and He Calls. 

He Calls us. Jude continues by writing that the recipients of his epistle are called by God. Jude 1~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 (κλητός klētos): (KJV) The word (κλητός klētos) called suggests being personally chosen by God. It carries with it an invitation that we are invited by God through the proclamation of the Gospel, to obtain eternal salvation in the kingdom through Christ. This invitation is for a banquet. Not unlike the feast Jesus Christ shares in His parable of Matthew 22. And just as those initially called reject the offer, Christ Jesus reminds His disciples that they would be loved by Him, but rejected by the world. John 15:19~If you belonged to the world, it would love you as its own. As it is, you do not belong to the world, but I have chosen you out of the world. That is why the world hates you. (NIV)

Through the Holy Spirit, God the Father calls us out of darkness into light by convicting us of our sins and revealing what Christ did for us on the cross. This calling is not based on anything we have done or any virtue we might possess. It is based solely on God’s amazing grace. Romans 11:29~for God’s gifts (χάρισμα charisma) and his calling (κλῆσις klēsis) are irrevocable (ἀμεταμέλητος ametamelētos). (NIV) His spiritual giftings and His calling are for God, without repentance. God wants a relationship with you and He does not want to take it back. You may think your life is not fit for God and yet He says COME! This is the Wondrous Power of God: He Sanctifies us for His divine purpose and service, He Keeps us by the Power of Jesus Christ who sacrificed to give us life and a relationship, He Calls us to Come, and then He Meets.