I Found it Necessary

Jude 1:3-4 ESV

“Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.”

This is where we are today, too. There are ungodly people in our midst masquerading as servants of righteousness who are perverting the grace of God into sensuality and who deny the Lordship of Jesus Christ over their lives. And this has become so prevalent in the church that it necessitates some of us writing appealing to the saints to contend for the faith.

We can’t ignore this. We can’t look the other way. We can’t just write about what sounds good or what makes people feel good while the gospel of our salvation is being slaughtered, and while people are still living in bondage to sin and headed for hell while they are being told they are saved from their sins and that they are headed to heaven.

For, what is being taught broadly is that we can make a profession of faith in Jesus Christ and that guarantees us salvation from sin and eternal life with God regardless of how we live our lives from now on until we die. In fact, many are teaching that we don’t have to repent (turn from our sins) or obey the Lord or submit to him as Lord (owner-master) of our lives.

So, they are giving free license to those who profess faith in Christ to continue living in adultery, immorality, sexual perversion, lying, cheating, stealing and the like. For they convince them that a profession of faith in Jesus Christ is like fire insurance which covers them so that they can live recklessly, in rebellion, and in deliberate disobedience to God.

Nonetheless, Jesus died on that cross that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. He died that we might no longer live for ourselves but for him who gave his life up for us. And he shed his blood for us on that cross to buy us back for God that we might be the Lord’s possession and that we might honor God with our lives/bodies.

[1 Pet 2:24; 1 Co 6:19-20; 2 Co 5:15, 21; Rom 6:1-23; Eph 4:17-24; Tit 2:11-14; Rom 8:1-17; 1 Jn 1:5-9; Eph 2:8-10]

For, Scripture teaches us that if we continue living in sin, if sin is what we practice, and if we are walking (conducting our lives) according to the flesh and not according to the Spirit, that we will die in our sins. We won’t have eternal life with God. And it teaches, too, that we are all going to be judged by our works (our deeds), i.e., by what we do.

[Gal 5:16-21; Eph 5:3-6; 1 Co 6:9-10; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 2:6-8; 2 Co 5:10]

Jude 1:12-13 ESV

“These are hidden reefs at your love feasts, as they feast with you without fear, shepherds feeding themselves; waterless clouds, swept along by winds; fruitless trees in late autumn, twice dead, uprooted; wild waves of the sea, casting up the foam of their own shame; wandering stars, for whom the gloom of utter darkness has been reserved forever.”

[Please read all of Jude 1. It would be too long to quote the whole passage here, so if you read it yourself it will help with your understanding of it.]

So, the subject here is the ungodly people who have crept in unnoticed into the gatherings of the church who are perverting the gospel of grace into sensuality and who are denying the Lordship of Christ over their lives. They have no consciences about what they do.

They will lie to you straight to your faces while they pretend to sincerely care about you. But truly they are just caring about themselves. They want you to think they care about you so that you will support what they do, and so that you will believe what they teach.

Some of them are just looking to build their earthly kingdoms and so they make compromises with the world in order to attract the world to their gatherings. And they dilute the gospel message to make it appealing and non-offensive so that people will feel at home in the “church.”

Others are more sinister than that. They work for Satan, and they are wolves in sheep’s clothing, and so their goal is to lead people away from Jesus Christ and from his gospel by giving them a fake alternative to the true gospel and the real Jesus Christ.

Jude 1:24-25 ESV

“Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen.”

We don’t have to be taken in by these charlatans. If we are truly in Christ, by faith in him, the Lord will give us wisdom and insight to know truth from lies. But we must also be students of the Scriptures and those who test whatever we hear against the Scriptures (in context).

For, the Lord is quite capable of keeping us from stumbling, but we have to be listening to him and obeying him. For, he has made the way of escape for us out from underneath temptation to sin, but we must take the way out he provided for us. We must say “NO!” to sin and “YES!” to God (Tit 2:11-14).

Our Lord is also able to present us blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy. But we must die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. We must walk (in conduct) according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh (Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-17; Eph 4:17-24; 1 Jn 1:5-9).

We must remain in Christ and in his word, and he must be Lord of our lives. Our focus needs to be on him, and on walking in obedience to his commands (New Covenant). Our desire must be for him above all else, and we must be those who are listening to him and who are doing what he says.

I Will Lift My Eyes

An Original Work / December 12, 2012
Based off Psalms 121-125

I will lift my eyes to my Lord Most High.
My help comes from Him, who saved me from sin.
He will not let your foot slip, and He who watches will not sleep.
Our Lord watches over you, and your life He will keep.
I will lift my eyes to my Lord Most High.
My help comes from Him, who saved me from sin.
I give thanks to Him.

I will lift my eyes to my God in heav’n.
I look to the Lord. My sins, He’s forgiv’n.
Because of His great love for us, He made us alive with Christ.
Through the kindness of our Savior, He gave us new life.
I will lift my eyes to my God in heav’n.
I look to the Lord. My sins, He’s forgiv’n;
My home, now in heav’n.

Praise be to the Lord, who is on our side.
Our help found in Him. He gives peace within.
Those who trust will ne’er be shaken. God will supply all we need.
Our Lord has done great things for us. He’s our friend, indeed!
Praise be to the Lord, who is on our side.
Our help found in Him. He gives peace within.
I can count on Him.

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