This book was written by Judas, Jesus’ physical brother, written sometime between Jesus’ resurrection (26 A.D.) and the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 A.D. Scripture confirms Jude as Jesus’ brother and shows that he is also the brother of James, the head of the Church of Jerusalem and the author of the New Testament book of James;
54 When He had come to His own country, He taught them in their synagogue, so that they were astonished and said, “Where did this Man get this wisdom and these mighty works?
55 Is this not the carpenter’s son? Is not His mother called Mary? And His brothers James, Joses, Simon, and Judas?
56 And His sisters, are they not all with us? Where then did this Man get all these things?”
57 So they were offended at Him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own house.
It must also be stressed that this Judas is NOT Judas Iscariot who betrayed and sold Jesus to the Jews and Romans for crucifixion. The name Judas was a Latin version of the name Judah, a very common name at the time. The surname “Ish Kerioth” (Hebrew “man of Kerioth”, Latin “Iscariot”) refers to his hometown, to separate him from Jesus’ brother Judas of Nazareth.
1 Jude, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to those who are called, sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ:
2 Mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.
Jude introduces himself to his readers as the brother of the by then well-known James, but like his brother James humbly calls himself a bondservant of Jesus Christ. A bondservant is one who makes himself a devoted servant to one he acknowledges as Master despite his own interests. In other words, slightly better than a devoted slave.
This is a tribute to the transforming power of Jesus Christ, for at first none of his four brothers believed in Him, as was prophesied;
7 Because for Your sake I have borne reproach; shame has covered my face.
8 I have become a stranger to my brothers, and an alien to my mother’s children;
This Scripture was fulfilled in;
2 Now the Jews’ Feast of Tabernacles was at hand.
3 His brothers therefore said to Him, “Depart from here and go into Judea, that Your disciples also may see the works that You are doing.
4 For no one does anything in secret while he himself seeks to be known openly. If You do these things, show Yourself to the world.”
5 For even His brothers did not believe in Him.
Yet after His resurrection and ascension back into Heaven, Scripture records;
12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day’s journey.
13 And when they had entered, they went up into the upper room where they were staying: Peter, James, John, and Andrew; Philip and Thomas; Bartholomew and Matthew; James the son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot; and Judas the son of James.
14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.
After Jesus’ resurrection apparently they ALL believed in Him!
3 Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.
4 For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation, ungodly men, who turn the grace of our God into lewdness and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.
Sadly. Jude speaks of a commonly recurring theme in the New Testament, namely servants of Satan trying to infiltrate the churches with false and twisted doctrines in order to deceive and draw away believers from the knowledge of the truth.
Jesus, Paul, Peter, and John all warned of this. Some examples;
23 “Then if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or ‘There!’ do not believe it.
24 For false christs and false prophets will rise and show great signs and wonders to deceive, if possible, even the elect.
25 See, I have told you beforehand.
28 Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.
29 For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock.
30 Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.
31 Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.
1 TIMOTHY 4:1-3
1 Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons,
2 speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron,
3 forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.
2 PETER 2:1-2
1 But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction.
2 And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed.
2 JOHN 1:7-8
7 For many deceivers have gone out into the world who do not confess Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist.
8 Look to yourselves, that we do not lose those things we worked for, but that we may receive a full reward.
5 But I want to remind you, though you once knew this, that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.
6 And the angels who did not keep their proper domain, but left their own abode, He has reserved in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day;
There has been much controversy over verse 6, concerning just who these angels are. WHERE they are now, was revealed by Peter when he wrote;
1 PETER 2:4
4 For if God did not spare the angels who sinned, but cast them down to hell and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved for judgment;
It is strongly suspected that these angels are the “sons of God” spoken of in Genesis;
1 Now it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth, and daughters were born to them,
2 that the sons of God saw the daughters of men, that they were beautiful; and they took wives for themselves of all whom they chose.
The “sons of God” referred to here are not men, as men are listed separately in verse 1. The term is used for angels twice in the book of Job;
6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan[b] also came among them.
7 And the Lord said to Satan, “From where do you come?” So Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.”
1 Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them to present himself before the Lord.
2 And the Lord said to Satan, “From where do you come?” Satan answered the Lord and said, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.”
So apparently shortly after Creation fallen angels took on human form, married human women and somehow had children with them. These are the angels whom Jude says “left their proper domain” (the spiritual realm) to appear as humans. God in His wrath chained them in Hell to await their judgment and destroyed their children in the Flood.
7 as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the cities around them in a similar manner to these, having given themselves over to sexual immorality and gone after strange flesh, are set forth as an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.
8 Likewise also these dreamers defile the flesh, reject authority, and speak evil of dignitaries.
9 Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!”
10 But these speak evil of whatever they do not know; and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts, in these things they corrupt themselves.
11 Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.
Jude holds up all these people and events as examples of corruption, in people that not only are slaves to their own sinful practices but they entice and corrupt others around them as well, bringing wrath and destruction upon themselves and their followers.
As Paul stated;
1 CORINTHIANS 15:33
33 Do not be deceived: “Evil company corrupts good habits.”
Satan apparently wanted the body of Moses for worship purposes, much as the Roman Catholic Church reveres the bones of “saints”, incorporating them into their altars. But I can only speculate here.
The key point Jude is trying to make is to avoid following the corruption of these people, as their corruption, and corrupt teachings, like cancer, will spread through the church body and will destroy the church body as completely as cancer does to the human body.
12 These are spots in your love feasts, while they feast with you without fear, serving only themselves. They are clouds without water, carried about by the winds; late autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots;
13 raging waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame; wandering stars for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.
Jude uses some pretty descriptive language to describe the corruption of these people, showing that they are dead spiritually and are considered dead while still living. Jesus and Paul used this analogy when describing the spiritually dead;
57 Now it happened as they journeyed on the road, that someone said to Him, “Lord, I will follow You wherever You go.”
58 And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay His head.”
59 Then He said to another, “Follow Me.”
But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.”
60 Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and preach the kingdom of God.”
1 TIMOTHY 5:5-6
5 Now she who is really a widow, and left alone, trusts in God and continues in supplications and prayers night and day.
6 But she who lives in pleasure is dead while she lives.
A person can be spiritually dead while still alive. And Jude apparently knew that the stars “wandered” through space at a time when the “learned” Greeks and Romans thought the planets were gods watching over the affairs of men.
We shouldn’t be surprised at this, seeing as Job (roughly 3,000 B.C.) knew that the Earth hung in space;
7 He stretches out the north over empty space; He hangs the earth on nothing.
14 Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied about these men also, saying, “Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of His saints,
15 to execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.”
It is interesting that Jude quotes from the apocryphal (man-made, wrongly attributed as Scripture) Book of Enoch, a book which all scholars agree should not be classed as Scripture. God apparently doesn’t have a problem with this particular passage, although scholars say the actual book is riddled with inaccuracies and errors.
16 These are grumblers, complainers, walking according to their own lusts; and they mouth great swelling words, flattering people to gain advantage.
17 But you, beloved, remember the words which were spoken before by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ:
18 how they told you that there would be mockers in the last time who would walk according to their own ungodly lusts.
19 These are sensual persons, who cause divisions, not having the Spirit.
The Pharisees fit into this category, they were lovers of attention, influencing people with their corrupted teachings, opposing the truth, greedy, casting out of the synagogues hose who oposed them, etc. The Sadducees in turn viewed religion as a money-machine which Jesus opposed when He forbid the selling of animals within the Temple and threw the money-changers out.
John spoke of an example within the church when he said;
3 John 1:9-10
9 I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to have the preeminence among them, does not receive us.
10 Therefore, if I come, I will call to mind his deeds which he does, prating against us with malicious words. And not content with that, he himself does not receive the brethren, and forbids those who wish to, putting them out of the church.
These are just a few examples, but hopefully you get the idea.
20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit,
21 keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.
22 And on some have compassion, making a distinction,
23 but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.
24 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,
25 To God our Savior, who alone is wise, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and forever. Amen.
Jude ends with several admonitions concerning sinful people, having compassion on those who have been led astray by false teachers and doctrines, gently correcting them with the truth. Others who indulge in sins, teach them the truth but be very careful, lest you be tempted as well by their sinful practices As Paul warned;
1 Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted.
And Jude didn’t mean we should hate our flesh or the clothes we wear because it touches our skin. The flesh is constantly attacked by sin, as sin can only attack the flesh, but it is the spirit that suffers the consequences of sin. For without the flesh there is no greed, lust, covetousness, and other sinful practices, causing Paul to state;
7 For he who has died has been freed from sin.
We are encased by sin and many times the battlefront in our fight against sin is our own bodies. We eagerly await our new glorified bodies over which sin will have no power; therefore we should by contrast hate the flesh because of its susceptibility to temptation and sin.
NONE of us are stronger than sin on our own. If we were, we wouldn’t need Jesus, would we? Therefore He has given us of His Spirit to help us fight against Satan and sin until death takes us or He returns for us.
May He return soon!!!!!
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