Jude - Lesson 2

Jude 4-8

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  • Our last time together in the book of Jude, we opened up with the first 3 verses.

    • We were introduced to the writer, Jude, who is the half-brother of Jesus and full brother of James.

      • We witnessed Jude’s immense love and affection for God’s people while also experiencing a much-needed warning and rebuke.

      • Jude will continue this letter in verses 4-8 similar to that of the sandwich technique we have all heard of in the business world.

      • You start with the good news, move to the bad news, criticism or critique, and end with the good news.

    • If you are to imagine this letter in that similar structure, that is how these 25 verses are setup.

      • We will see this morning that verse 4 starts the transition into the bad news regarding false teachers and their ultimate judgment and condemnation.

      • However, before we get there, we must not forget how this transition began.

    • By the leading of the Spirit of God, Jude changes directions in the intent of this letter.

      • What initially began as a letter regarding the shared common faith amongst these Christian believers has now shifted.

      • A focus that would start as a message of God’s salvific work and power moved to a focus on the doctrines and theology of our faith.

    • Jude would now write to this group of majority Jewish Christians from the diaspora about the need to contend for the faith.

      • This morning we will pick up at verse 4 through verse 8.

    • If I were to put a tag on the text, it would simply be, “Fruit never lies”

      • Pick me up at verse 4 of Jude.

Jude 4 For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who were long beforehand marked out for this condemnation, ungodly persons who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
Jude 5 Now I desire to remind you, though you know all things once for all, that the Lord, after saving a people out of the land of Egypt, subsequently destroyed those who did not believe.
Jude 6 And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great day,
Jude 7 just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, since they in the same way as these indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh, are exhibited as an example in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire.
Jude 8 Yet in the same way these men, also by dreaming, defile the flesh, and reject authority, and revile angelic majesties.
  • “What goes on in the dark always comes to light.”

    • As a child growing up, my mom would always use this phrase. I never understood why until I started realizing the context it was used in.

      • It would typically be used to address individuals who would commit injustices or some wrongdoing.

    • Whether it was an ill-intended decision from the administration from her school or the political/cultural climate of the day.

      • If there was something done wrong or an unjust decision made, she would make that statement.

      • Eventually, I started picking up the pattern and noticed the results from those particular situations.

      • It never failed that individuals that seemed like kind-hearted, well-meaning folks, good folks, always had bad intentions in what they did.

    • In other words, what my mom was really saying was, those who operate stealthily and with evil intent may not be seen for who they are now

      • But they will be found out in the end and justice will be served.

    • I am sure you have wondered the same thing too. When will evil and ungodly men receive what they deserve?

      • The question many believers have is “Why does injustice seem to continue on? When will justice be served?”

  • This morning Jude, in verses 4-8, will show us that evil wicked men do have an end and that end is eternal judgment and condemnation.

    • Jude will make it plain for us that God’s justice always prevails and that God takes sin seriously.

      • All false teachers will have a final judgment and an end.

      • Ultimately, we will discover that the fruit never lies.

      • Pick me up in Jude verse 4.

Jude 4 For certain persons have crept in unnoticed, those who were long beforehand marked out for this condemnation, ungodly persons who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.
  • Jude mentions that certain people have “crept in unnoticed”, in what we see as the third triad.

    • Notice, Jude says these are “certain men”. It means anyone. However, these are specific men.

      • How can we identify these men are a specific type? Well check out the next part of the verse.

      • These men have “crept in unnoticed”.

    • This phrase “crept in unnoticed” is one word in greek.

      • It is the Greek word, pareisdyo (par-ice-doo'-no). It means to slip in stealthily.

      • The expression literally means that this person has slipped in through the back door.

      • What is most interesting is that this word is only used one time in the New Testament, and it is used here, in Jude 4.

    • The imagery that is painted here is the bad guy in the movie that slips through the door unnoticed, right before the door shuts and is locked.

      • Not only have these men slipped through the doors but family, Jude tells us that they did so without being detected.

      • The question that should be raised in your mind is: How are these men not identified as outsiders or stealthy men at the least?

      • One could assume that these men may have dressed the part extremely well.

      • These men blended in well with their surroundings. They could talk the talk and walk the walk.

    • Growing up in the church I have had my fair share of Christian vernacular and I’m sure you have to.

      • You know, when you ask someone, “How are you doing today?”, the typical response growing up in the old baptist church was:

        • “I’m blessed and highly favored in the Lord!”

    • These men knew exactly what to say and how to say it. Some were so good that they would even find their way teaching in these Christian communities.

      • You see, it was not uncommon to have itinerant prophets or teachers come into town.

      • So it is not too far off to see how these “certain men” could potentially come under that guise and gain access to preach in these churches.

    • What we can see that the text makes evidently clear is these men were cunning and these believers were not diligent in analyzing the messages that were taught.

      • Why is this important for us to see?

      • Because a body of believers that are not diligent in analyzing what the preacher says according to what the text says is a sleeping church.

      • It is not enough just to go to church, participate in service, and go home just to do it all over again.

      • You must know that the word is being rightly divided. This is why we pass out bibles and ask you if you need one.

    • You must search the scriptures for yourself and don’t just take my word for it.

      • The question you have to see for yourself is, “Is the word of God being rightly divided?”

      • Does the teaching hold tried and true to the Apostle’s teaching.

      • Clearly, these churches and communities were not examining the claims and teachings of these men who were teaching.

      • But if you examine this further you can see that some of these Christian believers tolerated the teaching being taught.

    • The fact that these false teachers were not noticed at some point in time and identified as such is clear that some trusted these men and their teaching.

      • If there was a good example of diligence in standing firmly on sound teaching and doctrine, it would be seen from the church of Ephesus.

      • Check out what Jesus had to say about this church and how they tested what would be preached and taught in their church in Revelation 2:2.

Rev.2:2 I know your deeds and your labor and perseverance, and that you cannot tolerate evil people, and you have put those who call themselves apostles to the test, and they are not, and you found them to be false;
  • Jude continues to say these false teachers that have crept in have “long beforehand been marked out for condemnation.”

    • There is an obvious eternal judgment and punishment that these men will face due to their unbelief and wicked and perverse actions.

      • Might I just pause here and say, although it may seem like these men are getting away with their actions today, there will be a final judgment for them.

    • This word condemnation in Greek is the word krima.

      • It means judgment or verdict.

      • And what we know from scripture is that every individual that does not come to faith in Christ will face the Great White Throne judgement.

      • And from there an eternity in hell separated from God.

    • Jude mentions that this condemnation was known long beforehand.

      • In other words, the uprise and infiltration of these false teachers and their evil deeds was not a surprise to God and should not surprise us.

      • Check out what Jesus says about the false prophets in Matthew 7:13-23

Matthew 7:13 “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it.
Matthew 7:14 “For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.
Matthew 7:15 “Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves.
Matthew 7:16 “You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they?
Matthew 7:17 “So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit.
Matthew 7:18 “A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit.
Matthew 7:19 “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.
Matthew 7:20 “So then, you will know them by their fruits.
  • What Jesus mentions in Matthew 7 regarding these wicked men, especially verse 20 is key!

    • These men not only have no fruit to show for what they know or what they teach but there is nothing good for them that is to come.

    • Jude describes these men more clearly.

      • He says these men are ungodly men. Meaning they are not believers and are not submitted to authority in any regard.

      • These men have turned the very grace of God into a license to sin.

    • Jude, during this time, is combating what we know as Gnosticism.

      • The gnostics taught believers they could glorify Christ through their sin.

      • They believed that the more they sinned, the more God provides His grace to us.

    • Family, not only is this heretical teaching but this is just downright wrong.

      • This “special revelation” from these teachers was not only unbiblical but it opened doors for license to deny Christ in our deeds.

      • In other words, these ungodly men used their lives to encourage believers to live in such a way that denies the very saving power of the Gospel.

    • This is exactly what Paul was reminding Titus of to warn the churches in Crete against the false teachers in Titus 1:16, where he says this:

Titus 1:16 They profess to know God, but by their deeds they deny Him, being detestable and disobedient and worthless for any good deed.
  • It is in fact the deeds, the actions, the fruit of these men that reveal their spiritual condition.

    • These men are ungodly, unbelieving men, who because of their idolatrous hearts, seek to corrupt and turn the minds and hearts of believers away from the truth.

      • Their very actions deny our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

    • Check out the similar language that Peter uses in 2 Peter 2:1.

      • It reads this way:

2 Peter 2:1 But false prophets also appeared among the people, just as there will also be false teachers among you, who will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction upon themselves.
  • It will be in the next few verses, that Jude will show through historical examples how God has and will deal with unbelief and false teachers.

    • Check out Jude 5-7

Jude 5 Now I desire to remind you, though you know all things once for all, that the Lord, after saving a people out of the land of Egypt, subsequently destroyed those who did not believe.
Jude 6 And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great day,
Jude 7 just as Sodom and Gomorrah and the cities around them, since they in the same way as these indulged in gross immorality and went after strange flesh, are exhibited as an example in undergoing the punishment of eternal fire.
  • It is in verses 5-7 that we reach the fourth triad. This triad brings us to historical implications of how God deals with evil in the world.

    • You will see how Jude uses these examples in parallel to the issue he is now writing about which is false teachers and their evil deeds.

      • We will take a look at each example as it appears in these verses accordingly.

      • Let’s start out with verse 5.

    • Jude begins by saying that he “desires to remind them though you know all things once for all..”

      • Notice a similar phrase from our first teaching in Jude: “once for all”

      • This term is once again, connecting the reader and hearer of this letter to remember what has been passed down in apostolic teaching.

      • This is that pinch mom would give after having to tell you a second and third time about not touching anything in the store.

    • This reminder is what Peter mentions in 2 Peter 1:12, where he says:

2 Peter 1:12 Therefore, I will always be ready to remind you of these things, even though you already know them and have been established in the truth which is present with you.
  • What Peter means is that he will continually always be reminding them of what they already know.

    • This is a constant reminder because clearly the churches that Jude is addressing have forgotten or misplaced what they have been taught.

    • As one theologian noted, “Preaching is not designed to teach us something new in every sermon; but to put us in remembrance, to call to mind things forgotten.

      • So this proverbial pinch is to steer them to remember what it is that they have been taught and what has, indeed, been passed down.

    • Because this is a primarily Jewish Christian audience, Jude uses an Old Testament reference to the children of Israel based upon Exodus 12:51.

      • Jude mentions that the God of Israel saves a people (His chosen people) by delivering them out of Egypt.

      • It is clear that although the Children of Israel are God’s chosen people, some did not believe in the promises of the God that saved them.

    • By God’s mercy, He draws Israel (both believing and unbelieving Jews) out of Egypt, however, he destroys those who did not believe.

      • It can be clear from this first example that when it comes down to matters of sin and unbelief, God takes it seriously.

      • So seriously that, as we see from the text, God judges Sin and for Israel, it led to death.

      • Check out 1 Corinthians 10:5-10 and Hebrews 3:16-19 speaking about God’s chosen people and those who were unbelievers:

1 Corinthians 10:5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not pleased; for their dead bodies were spread out in the wilderness.
1 Corinthians 10:6 Now these things happened as examples for us, so that we would not crave evil things as they indeed craved them.
1 Corinthians 10:7 Do not be idolaters, as some of them were; as it is written: “The people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play.”
1 Corinthians 10:8 Nor are we to commit sexual immorality, as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in one day.
1 Corinthians 10:9 Nor are we to put the Lord to the test, as some of them did, and were killed by the snakes.
1 Corinthians 10:10 Nor grumble, as some of them did, and were killed by the destroyer.
    • Here is Hebrews 3:16-19:
Hebrews 3:16 For who provoked Him when they had heard? Indeed, did not all those who came out of Egypt led by Moses?
Hebrews 3:17 And with whom was He angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose dead bodies fell in the wilderness?
Hebrews 3:18 And to whom did He swear that they would not enter His rest, but to those who were disobedient?
Hebrews 3:19 And so we see that they were not able to enter because of unbelief.
  • Jude makes a very clear statement with this example: There are those who are God’s and those who are not.

    • Association, familiarity, and proximity have nothing to do with belief and trust in God.

    • True belief in the Lord is always followed by a right response.

      • And if you are in the mix due to association, don’t think that it will be hidden for too long or that you can get away with it.

      • God takes sin seriously and he will destroy it and those that are not His, masquerading as such.

  • The second example that Jude gives is what Jude wants them to be reminded of. Check out verse 6:

Jude 6 And angels who did not keep their own domain, but abandoned their proper abode, He has kept in eternal bonds under darkness for the judgment of the great day,”
  • Jude mentions that there were angels who did not stay where they belonged.

    • Messianic Jewish Scholar Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum in his exposition of Jude states this about the Greek translation of this verse:

      • “The Greek text literally reads, “They (the angels) did not attend to their own business.”

      • These angels went against what they were told and disobeyed God and his Holy instructions.

    • Scripture reveals to us that this particular account that Jude mentions is connected to Genesis 6:1-4.

      • This account deals with the demons impregnating women on the earth in an effort to corrupt the seed of man.

      • Clearly, these angels were no longer angels but were in fact demons and rightly so.

    • I want us to look at the result of these angels’, now demons, disobedience to God. They are now kept in eternal bondage until the appointed judgment.

      • This appointed time of judgment is known as the Great day.

    • Why would Jude use this example as an historical illustration to the current situation?

      • Here is why he uses it:

      • Just as angels knew who God was, have seen His glory and splendor.

      • Knew the second and third person of the Trinity (Jesus and the Holy Spirit)

      • They still chose to rebel even with the truth before their very eyes.

    • And just as the angels rebelled against God and His Heavenly majesty, so are the false teachers that have infiltrated the ranks of God’s believers.

      • Although these men are amongst you, it does not mean they are of you.

      • And eventually, if you are truly girding yourself in the truth, you will see these men for who they really are, counterfeits.

  • Jude continues in this section of the text in verse 7.

    • It is here that Jude uses the example of Sodom and Gomorrah. A story that some are no strangers to.

      • For those of you who may not be familiar with the story of Sodom and Gomorrah, this city was what we would call “Sin-city”.

      • And even that name doesn’t give it any justice.

    • Sodom and Gomorrah were known for fornication and sexual deviance and desire of all levels.

      • What is interesting is how Jude takes verses 6 and 7 and connects them both using the phrase “Just as” in the beginning of verse 7.

      • This is important to understand because both the demons in verse 6 and the men and women in verse 7 of this example are given over to their desires.

    • The result of the men and women of Sodom and Gomorrah giving into their sexual desires resulted in the destruction of that city by fire.

      • One theologian documents it as “a scene of sulfurous devastation”.

      • This provided a simple foretaste of the eternal fiery judgment that is to come.

    • It could be seen that this acting out by one’s own compulsion or desire is what these false teachers were known by.

      • Their allegiance and submission is not to Jesus and His Lordship. Their reverence is not to a Holy God and His saving power.

      • These false teachers are not guided or yielded to the power of the Holy Spirit because the Spirit of God is not in them.

    • It becomes all the more clear that these men’s actions and deeds do not align with what they “claim” to believe or even know.

      • These false teachers find much joy in their deviant and destructive desires.

      • They exhibit no remorse or repentance for their ways

    • So what we see within this triad is that no belief, a rejection of God’s power and authority result in destructive behavior which leads to eternal punishment.

  • Family, do not think for one moment that the false teachers of today are getting away with anything they are doing and the way they are leading people astray.

    • It is evidently clear from a historical perspective that the way in which God deals with sin does not change.

      • These false teachers may be relishing in their advances over the vulnerable and spiritually dead now, but they have a special seat in hell with their name on it.

    • God’s justice is perfect and it doesn’t overlook anyone.

      • God is wholly committed to His word and Himself.

    • Jude now moves to summarize this particular triad in verse 8. Check out what he says:

Jude 8 Yet in the same way these men, also by dreaming, defile the flesh, and reject authority, and revile angelic majesties.
  • We arrive at the fifth triad where Jude will summarize from the previous historical examples, what kind of men these false teachers are.

    • He mentions that through the false teacher’s mystical dreaming, sin is the result.

      • Jude mentions these sinful acts are the result of their dreaming.

      • Recognize that the false teachers’ dreaming give permission and license to sin.

      • The question we should be asking ourselves is what are these “dreams” these men are experiencing.

    • The word dreaming in Greek is enypniazomai (en-oop-nee-ad'-zom-ahee). This word simply means a dream, a revelation, or divinely suggested.

      • These false teachers would tell believers in these Christian communities that their license to do what they did came through revelation.

      • Family, this is why we have to be cautious when people say that the “Lord told me this or that”.

      • This is why we must be careful when individuals say “the Lord showed me this in a dream”.

      • It is not to say everyone that says that is false, it is to say that that revelation must be tested by the truth of God’s word. Here is why:

    • In churches today, prosperity theology is polluting the minds of millions. You may have heard some of these false teachers before.

      • They begin with these elaborate dreams or revelations that they say the Lord showed them and then follow it up by asking you to sow a seed for their private jet.

      • Or maybe they had a dream and the Lord showed them something that is not found in the scriptures.

  • I want to read to you a brief excerpt from a story done by a false teacher that is still in the pulpit today and has established his own denomination.

    • Here is what the excerpt says:

"I couldn't reconcile a God whose mercy endures forever, and this torture chamber that's customized for unbelievers," said the false teacher.
And he often agonized over the fate of his non-Christian family members. According to his faith, they were doomed to hell.
This particular man would say, "How can you really love a god who's torturing your grandmother? And that's what I went through for years."
The more he studied, the more this certain man saw the Bible not as the literal word of God but a book by men about God -- primitive men prone to mistranslations, political agendas and human emotions. And one night, as he watched Peter Jennings' report on the parade of suffering in Rwanda, he had a revelation.

Here is the special revelation from this certain man,

"I remember thinking that these were probably Muslims because God wouldn't let that happen to Christians," he said. "Unbelieving Muslims, little starving babies and that they were going to die and go to hell."
"And that's when I said, 'God, how could you, how could you call yourself a loving God and a living God, and just let them suffer like that, then to suck them into hell?'" he continued. "And that's when I thought I heard an inner voice say, 'Is that what you think we're doing?' I said, 'That's what I've been taught. You're sucking them into hell.' And that voice said, 'Can't you see they're already there? That's hell. You created that.'"
This certain man believed that God was telling him hell is the creation of man on earth.
    • God’s truth and revelation of Himself is found in scripture and not our emotions or lack of understanding.
    • The God that we serve can be trusted and taken at His word without confusion and it can be confirmed through the scriptures.

      • Check out what the Lord God said regarding false prophets in Jeremiah 23:25-32.

Jeremiah 23:25 “I have heard what the prophets have said who prophesy falsely in My name, saying, ‘I had a dream, I had a dream!’
Jeremiah 23:26 How long? Is there anything in the hearts of the prophets who prophesy falsehood, these prophets of the deceitfulness of their own heart,
Jeremiah 23:27 who intend to make My people forget My name by their dreams which they report to one another, just as their fathers forgot My name because of Baal?
Jeremiah 23:28 The prophet who has a dream may report his dream, but let him who has My word speak My word truthfully. What does straw have in common with grain?” declares the Lord.
Jeremiah 23:29 “Is My word not like fire?” declares the Lord, “and like a hammer which shatters a rock?
Jeremiah 23:30 Therefore behold, I am against the prophets,” declares the Lord, “who steal My words from each other.
Jeremiah 23:31 Behold, I am against the prophets,” declares the Lord, “who use their tongues and declare, ‘The Lord declares!’
Jeremiah 23:32 Behold, I am against those who have prophesied false dreams,” declares the Lord, “and reported them and led My people astray by their lies and reckless boasting; yet I did not send them nor command them, nor do they provide this people the slightest benefit,” declares the Lord.
  • Once again, it becomes clear that God does not like sin and He is serious about His word.

    • The false teachers have no high view of scripture, no acknowledgment of the truth and the truth is not in them.

      • Because of this fact, the false teachers turn to their own desires and pleasures exchanging what is pleasing to God to what is pleasing to self.

      • Friends, this is idolatry at the core and these false teachers see nothing wrong with it.

    • Because the Lord Jesus is not their Master and King, they turn to themselves.

      • And what becomes of that is their giving into their sexual desires.

      • Rejecting the one and only God by denying Jesus Christ as Lord and King.

  • And lastly, the text says reviling “angelic majesties”.

    • You may remember that Greek word for revile. It is the word blaspheme.

      • So the text says that the false teachers blaspheme the angelic majesties.

      • You may be scratching your head wondering what are angelic majesties, what all does it encompass?

    • That phrase “angelic majesties” in Greek means “doxa”.

      • The word Doxa means, glory.

    • In other words, these false teachers deny the very glory, splendor, majesty, and power of our Great God.

      • They have no regard for who God is, what He has done, nor His word.

      • For the false teacher it is literally in one ear and out the other.

    • The only glory that they see is their own and friends, might I say that is no glory at all.

      • What the text shows us this morning is that, these men are evil, wicked, and wrapped up in themselves.

      • They have no regard for scripture but will use the Lord’s name in order to gain access to more people and positions of power.

      • Can you see why Jude sensed the need to transition the intent of this letter in a different direction?

    • There is no room or excuse for a believer in Jesus to not be diligent in knowing the word of God.

      • The more that we love this book, spend time with Jesus, and worship the Lord for who He is, the more we will value His truth!

      • The more that we value God’s truth, the better we can detect the lies from the enemy.

      • We also see that not everyone who uses Jesus’ name is of Him. You will tell who they are by their fruit.

    • If the result of being saved is a life committed to Jesus, then the life of the believer must be based upon knowing and loving this book.