Jude is pretty clear on what we should do. “But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit, and await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will bring you eternal life. In this way, you will keep yourselves safe in God’s love.” Don’t we all want to be “safe.” In the world today that could be safety from the pandemic. In other places, it is safety from war or other crimes. Our destiny is safe when we place our trust in Jesus.
The book of Jude is small and mighty. We don’t visit it too often; and preachers don’t often preach from it. But this message was blessed and included in our Holy Scripture for a reason. Since our brains are designed to keep us safe, verses 20 and 21 (above) should really resonate with us. Being “safe in God’s love” sounds to be the safest place we can be.
There will be people we encounter who will try to take us off track and push us out of our safety. It’s good to have this warning to be on the lookout. We can’t claim “we didn’t know.” Awareness is powerful.
It’s like driving a car in heavy traffic here in Mexico. To avoid crashing into another vehicle or even a pedestrian you have to be on your toes, watch every angle at every moment. I remember holding my breath when riding around with our realtor friend. Then when we arrived, it was me behind the wheel! I have learned how to be more alert than ever, and that same alertness has served me well in other areas of life as well.
We are also called to build each other up. We all have our weak, vulnerable spots. What a blessing it is we can come together and support each other. We do have to be brave enough to open ourselves up to expose our weakness. Keeping our secrets hidden will not make them go away. Ephesians 5:13 says, “But everything exposed by the light becomes visible—and everything that is illuminated becomes a light.” What are you afraid to expose to the light?
We pray for mercy and then show mercy to others. It’s a beautiful dance of mercy. We pay forward what we have already received. When we can help strengthen the faith of another, we have done what we have been called to do. We just need to be careful we don’t fall prey to sinful behaviors in the process.
God “is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault.” How can that be? We are clothes in the righteousness of Jesus. That is reassuring, is it not? Take some time to let that really sink in. To be safe, rely on God when you are helping others get back on track.
Jude’s message is compact and powerful. I love how he concludes his letter by giving such praise to God. “All glory, majesty, power, and authority are his before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time!” What authority! We should grab on to these words and use them as adoration during our own prayer time. Remembering what a powerful God we serve will fuel and sustain us and give honor to our heavenly Father.
Let’s pray . . . Lord, I come to you with a heart full of thanksgiving for this message. I love when I see action steps so easily given as if you had prescribed them for my eyes alone. Use me to encourage others. Thank you, too, for the reassurance of your presence and how you provide for me just what I need. All glory, majesty, power, and authority are yours forevermore! In Jesus’ name. Amen.