Weekly Devotional – A Call To Persevere

Jude 1:17-23

If the Holy Spirit could be bought, I figure it would be worth millions by now. But it can’t be bought with money. In fact, you must earn the Holy Spirit. Jesus tells us in John 14:15-17 that He would pray to the Father to send us a Helper only on one condition. Jesus stated, “if you love Me, keep My Commands.” That’s the condition! Keep My Commands.

After presenting the way to Heaven through the “narrow gate” (Matt. 7:13-14) Jesus warned the disciples about another gate that was opened wide and there were false prophets (Matt. 7:15-20) that would try to trick you into using the wrong gate. These false teachers were compared by Christ as being “ravenous wolves.”

Jude urged his readers to remember that these false teachers were nothing new because the apostles had foretold of such people who scoffed at those who refused to follow them. Jude may have referred to warnings like those in Ac 20:29-30 and 1Tim 4:1-3. The heretics created divisions and followed their ungodly desires. As people who were unbelievers, they did not have the Holy Spirit.

In warning the teachers of the Law and the Pharisees of their ultimate destruction if they continued on their present path, Jesus pronounced seven woes, each beginning with Woe to you. “Those woes, in contrast to the Beatitudes, denounce false religion as utterly detestable to God and worthy of severe condemnation. In six of the seven, Jesus called the leaders you hypocrites.

Jesus could call them hypocrites because He had already seen their fruit. The conduct of the Christian is listed in Matthew 5:3-12 and these are the ways we can demonstrate our love for Christ. These are the branches spoken of in John 15:1-8 and these branches bear the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22).

His first woe concerned the fact that the Pharisees were preventing others from entering the kingdom. Their hostility toward Jesus had caused many to turn away from Him. Many Jews were looking to their leaders for direction. Their failure to accept Jesus as Messiah had placed a stumbling block in the paths of their countrymen. For this, they stood condemned.

Paul warned of the false teachers (1Tim. 1:3-7) and told Timothy to oppose them. Again in 1 Timothy 6:2-10. Paul warns against the false teachers and points out their love for money. There are those who desire the attention brought by causing controversy among the people of the particular church congregation.

In 2 Timothy 2:14-26, Paul talks to Timothy about how he should deal with these false teachers. First and foremost we should be concerned for their souls and try to turn them around and bring them to Christ.

Peter also warned about these false prophets (teachers) (2Peter 2:1-22). Peter compared their punishment to several of the punishments God had exacted on the human race in the beginning. Peter talked about the fallen angels, the flood, the judgement on Sodom and Gomorrah and others. The result of this warning was to show the Believers what would eventually happen to these evil people.

After primarily describing the false teachers up to this point, Jude now exhorted his readers on how to contend for the faith (Jude 1:3). They were to show mercy to those who were wavering, reach out to those who had already been taken in and needed to be snatched from the fire (Amos 4:11; Zech. 3:2), and show concern for the wayward heretics, all at the same time. But believers were to be careful lest they also became defiled.

There are those that think they can go to church and listen to the preacher and that is all they need to do. Wrong! Each and every one of us must challenge the teachers and preachers by studing the lesson and the bible readings to make sure the teachers and preachers are really sent by God.

If we continue to just sit and do nothing, we are no better than the false teachers and preachers that are trying to destroy the church community.

Start with prayer to seek guidance from God. Then study your bible and allow God to teach you. You will find that God knows much more than you and the teacher or preacher you are trying to follow.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: