Reading for Today:
- Hosea 11:1–12:14
- Psalm 139:17-24
- Proverbs 29:22
- Jude 1-25
Hosea 11:1 In tender words reminiscent of the Exodus from Egypt (Ex. 4:22, 23), the Lord reassured Israel of His intense love for her. His compassion for her was aroused (Is. 12:1; 40:1,2; 49:13; Jer. 31:10–14; Zech. 1:12–17). See Matthew 2:15 for Matthew’s analogical use of this verse in relationship to Jesus Christ.
Jude 3 contend earnestly. While the salvation of those to whom he wrote was not in jeopardy, false teachers preaching and living out a counterfeit gospel were misleading those who needed to hear the true gospel. Jude wrote this urgent imperative for Christians to wage war against error in all forms and fight strenuously for the truth, like a soldier who has been entrusted with a sacred task of guarding a holy treasure (1 Tim. 6:12; 2 Tim. 4:7). the faith. This is the whole body of revealed salvation truth contained in the Scriptures. Here is a call to know sound doctrine (Eph. 4:14; Col. 3:16: 1 Pet. 2:2; 1 John 2:12–14), to be discerning in sorting out truth from error (1 Thess. 5:20–22), and to be willing to confront and attack error (2 Cor. 10:3–5; Phil. 1:17, 27; 1 Tim. 1:18; 6:12; 2 Tim. 1:13; 4:7, 8; Titus 1:13). once for all delivered…saints. God’s revelation was delivered once as a unit, at the completion of the Scripture, and is not to be edited by either deletion or addition (Deut. 4:2; 12:32; Prov. 30:6; Rev. 22:18, 19). Scripture is complete, sufficient, and finished; therefore it is fixed for all time. Nothing is to be added to the body of the inspired Word because nothing else is needed.
Jude 13 raging waves. Apostates promise powerful ministry, but are quickly exposed as wreakers of havoc and workers of worthless shame (Is. 57:20).wandering stars. This most likely refers to a meteor or shooting star which has an uncontrolled moment of brilliance and then fades away forever into nothing. Apostates promise enduring spiritual direction but deliver a brief, aimless, and worthless flash.
DAY 10: Who was Jude, and why did he write his letter?
Although Jude (Judas) was a common name in Palestine (at least 8 are named in the New Testament), the author of Jude generally has been accepted as Jude, Christ’s half brother. He is to be differentiated from the apostle Judas, the son of James (Luke 6:16; Acts 1:13). Several lines of thought lead to this conclusion: 1) Jude’s appeal to being the “brother of James,” the leader of the Jerusalem Council (Acts 15) and another half brother of Jesus (v. 1; Gal. 1:19); 2) Jude’s salutation being similar to James’s (James 1:1); and 3) Jude’s not identifying himself as an apostle (v. 1), but rather distinguishing between himself and the apostles (v. 17).
Jude lived at a time when Christianity was under severe political attack from Rome and aggressive spiritual infiltration from Gnostic-like apostates and libertines who sowed abundant seed for a gigantic harvest of doctrinal error. It could be that this was the forerunner to full-blown Gnosticism which the apostle John would confront over 25 years later in his epistles. Except for John, who lived at the close of the century, all of the other apostles had been martyred; and Christianity was thought to be extremely vulnerable. Thus, Jude called the church to fight, in the midst of intense spiritual warfare, for the truth.
Jude is the only New Testament book devoted exclusively to confronting “apostasy,” meaning defection from the true, biblical faith (vv. 3, 17). Apostates are described elsewhere in 2 Thessalonians 2:10; Hebrews 10:29; 2 Peter 2:1–22; 1 John 2:18–23. He wrote to condemn the apostates and to urge believers to contend for the faith. He called for discernment on the part of the church and a rigorous defense of biblical truth. He followed the earlier examples of: 1) Christ (Matt. 7:15ff.; 16:6–12; 24:11ff; Rev. 2; 3); 2) Paul (Acts 20:29,30; 1 Tim. 4:1; 2 Tim. 3:1–5; 4:3, 4); 3) Peter (2 Pet. 2:1, 2; 3:3, 4); and 4) John (1 John 4:1–6; 2 John 6–11).
From The MacArthur Daily Bible Copyright © 2003. Used by permission of Thomas Nelson Bibles, a division of Thomas Nelson, Inc, Nashville, TN 37214, www.thomasnelson.com.