They Pervert the Grace of God

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.”

Who are these people and what are they like? The rest of Jude 1 gives us quite a detailed description of their character traits:

• They rely on their own imaginations, not on the word of God
• They reject authority and blaspheme all they don’t understand
• They are destroyed by their own animalistic instincts
• They are haters of the righteous and they murder God’s servants
• They are sexually immoral and full of lust and greed
• They are shepherds who feed only themselves and not their flock
• They are wild, uncontrolled, and undisciplined followers of flesh
• They are those who wander from the truth and who follow lies
• They are ungodly people engaged in ungodly deeds
• They are grumblers, malcontents, following their own sinful desires
• They are loud-mouthed boasters who gain advantage over others
• They are scoffers who follow after ungodly passions
• They are worldly people devoid of the Holy Spirit

So, who are these people? They are pastors, elders, and deacons of churches (or what are falsely called churches), and they are teachers of the Scriptures, and they are “Christian” book authors and writers of “Christian” devotions. And they are well loved and well admired people in the Christian community. And they are people of enormous influence over the thinking of those who call themselves Christians. And some of them are politicians or actors who claim to be Christians and so they also have a large following.

And some of them are writers of “Christian” memes on social media (on the internet), some of which teach the Scriptures and/or biblical principles out of context. And they twist what the Scriptures teach so that they say the opposite of what the Scriptures teach. But they sound biblical. And they sound good. And it appears most people will like them without taking the time to test what they are teaching against the Scriptures in their context. And so many people are being deceived and led astray by these memes.

And these people being talked about here are those who have crept in largely unnoticed among the gatherings of the saints of God (or among the gatherings of what are falsely called churches). And most people don’t recognize them for who and what they are because they themselves are not students of the Scriptures, and they themselves are living ungodly lifestyles full of the passions and pleasures of this sinful world. And so they are not able to be discerning about these ungodly people who are teaching them.

What are They Doing?

And what are these ungodly people doing? They are perverting the grace of our God into sensuality and they deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. And they are doing this “in spades,” meaning in abundance or to a large degree. And in America, most people calling themselves Christians appear to be totally unaware that this is happening. For it is evident that the vast majority of “church goers,” or those calling themselves “Christians,” are followers of these who are perverting the grace of our God.

So, what does this mean that they are perverting the grace of God into sensuality? Well, first of all let’s look at what the grace of God isn’t. It isn’t free license to continue living in deliberate and habitual sin while claiming Jesus as Lord and Savior, and while claiming heaven as one’s eternal destiny. God’s grace is not permission to live however you want now that you are “saved,” and our salvation is not a one-time event that happens in our lives but it is progressive and won’t be complete until Jesus takes us home, and only providing that we continue steadfast in faith until the end.

[Matt 7:21-23; Lu 9:23-26; Jn 8:31-32; Jn 15:1-12; Rom 8:24; Rom 11:17-24; Rom 13:11; 1 Co 1:18; 1 Co 15:1-2; Gal 5:16-21; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; 2 Tim 1:8-9; 2 Tim 2:10-13; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 9:28; 1 Pet 1:5; 2 Pet 1:5-11; 2 Pet 2:20-22; 1 Jn 1:5-10; 1 Jn 2:3-6;24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10]

So, what is God’s grace to us? Yes, it is Jesus’ death on that cross for our sins, but not just so we can be forgiven of our sins and so we can have eternal life with God. Jesus died that we might die with him to sin and live to him and to his righteousness. He died so we would now live for him and no longer for ourselves. And in his death he shed his blood for us to buy us back for God (to redeem us) so we would now honor God with our lives (see 1 Peter 2:24; 2 Corinthians 5:15,21; 1 Corinthians 6:19-20).

Also, God’s grace, which brings salvation, trains us to renounce (say “No!” to) ungodliness and fleshly lusts and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives while we wait for our Lord’s soon return. For Jesus Christ “gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works” (Titus 2:11-14). These are the works of God he created that we must walk in them (Eph 2:10; cf. 1 Co 15:58; Php 2:12-13; Col 1:9-14; 2 Thess 1:11-12; Titus 3:8).

And the grace of God frees us from our slavery (addiction) to sin so that we are now empowered of God to live in godliness and holiness and no longer as slaves to sin but now as slaves to God and to his righteousness. For are we to continue in sin now that we are under grace? By no means! For how can we who died to sin still live in it? For by the grace of God, we who believe in Jesus with God-given faith are crucified with Christ in death to sin and we are raised with Christ to walk in newness of life in him, no longer as slaves to sin but now as those who have been set free from bondage to sin.

[Matt 7:21-23; Lu 9:23-26; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14,24; Rom 12:1-2; 1 Co 6:9-10,19-20; 2 Co 5:10,15,21; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Eph 2:8-10; Eph 4:17-32; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-17; 1 Pet 2:24; Tit 2:11-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6,24-25; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 3:6,14-15; Heb 10:23-31; Heb 12:1-2; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

So, those who are perverting the grace of God into sensuality, and who are denying our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ, are teaching that all we have to do is pray some prayer or make some acknowledgement of faith in Jesus Christ and now we are “saved” and on our way to heaven regardless of how we live our lives from that point forward. And so they are giving their adherents free license to continue living in deliberate and habitual sin with no fear of God and no honoring of God with their lives.

Some of them are going so far as to say that we do not have to submit to Christ as Lord, we do not have to repent of our sins, and we do not have to obey the Lord. For they call that “works salvation.” But they ignore the bulk of the Scriptures, even (or primarily) the teachings of Paul who taught that we must now walk no longer according to the flesh but according to the Spirit, and sin should no longer be our practice, but obedience to our Lord must be our practice or we will not inherit eternal life with God.

[Lu 9:23-26; Gal 5:16-21; Gal 6:7-8; Rom 1:18-32; Rom 2:6-8; 1 Co 6:9-10; 2 Co 5:10; Eph 5:3-6; Col 1:21-23; Col 3:5-11; Rom 6:1-23; Rom 8:1-14; 1 Jn 1:5-9; 1 Jn 2:3-6; 1 Jn 3:4-10; Heb 10:26-31; 1 Pet 1:17-21; Jn 15:1-11; Matt 7:21-23; Rev 21:8,27; Rev 22:14-15]

So, test the spirits to see if they are of God, and test them against the Scriptures taught IN CONTEXT. For if you continue in deliberate and habitual sin, you will not inherit eternal life with God. But if you repent of your sins and follow Jesus in obedience, you do have eternal life with God.

For Our Nation

An Original Work / September 11, 2012

Bombs are bursting. Night is falling.
Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.
Trust Him with your life today.
Make Him your Lord and your Savior.
Turn from your sin. Follow Jesus.
He will forgive you of your sin;
Cleanse your heart, made new within.

Men betraying: Our trust fraying.
On our knees to God we’re praying,
Seeking God to give us answers
That are only found in Him.
God is sovereign over all things.
Nothing from His mind escaping.
He has all things under His command,
And will work all for good.

Jesus Christ is gently calling
You to follow Him in all ways.

Men deceiving: we’re believing
In our Lord, and interceding
For our nation and its people
To obey their God today.
He is our hope for our future.
For our wounds He offers suture.
He is all we need for this life.
Trust Him with your life today.

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