“You must remember, beloved, the predictions of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;they said to you, ‘In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions.’It is these who set up divisions, worldly people, devoid of the Spirit.
But you, beloved, build yourselves up on your most holy faith; pray in the Holy Spirit; keep yourselves in the love of God; wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. And convince some, who doubt; save some, by snatching them out of the fire; on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.”Jude 17-23
“Pray in the Holy Spirit”
The New Testament Letter of Jude reminds the Christian people to “pray in the Holy Spirit” and to “build one another up in faith” and the “love of God”, and to “convince those who doubt” and waver, and to act with mercy on behalf of others who struggle with their faith and living a godly life.
Bede, in his commentary of the Letter of Jude, explains the meaning of Jude’s exhortations:
“We pray in the Holy Spirit when, pierced by divine inspiration, we request help from on high to receive the good things which we are unable [to acquire] of ourselves. Blessed Jude, therefore, advises us so to build ourselves up on the foundation of our holy faith, so to join ourselves as living stones to the house of God which is the Church, so to keep ourselves in the love of God that we may never presume on our own strength but may hope in the help of divine protection.”
Convince the doubters: Jude is recommending mercy for those who doubt the truth of the words of false teaching.
The garment spotted by the flesh. However, we are not called to hate our own flesh as such but only the fact that it has been stained by sin, and we are called to work for its cleansing, so that what is carnal may become spiritual. However, this cannot be done in our own strength but only by the power of God, as Jude goes on to say in his closing blessing.
This verse gives equal glory to the Father and the Son in all things and for all time and eternity. By saying that glory, majesty, dominion and power should be attributed to God the Father through our Lord Jesus Christ, Jude is refuting those who believe that the Son is inferior to the Father. As he goes on to say in conclusion, the Son does not have his beginning at some point in time but has been there from all ages, is there now and will be there forever. Amen.”
May this issue inspire us and our fellow Christians to earnestly pray and intercede on behalf of all the Christian people, that we may seek the face of the Lord, listen to his voice and receive his word with meekness and submission, and to rely on his grace and power to overcome the world, the flesh, and the devil.
Sincerely in Christ,
Top image credit: Bible illustration of the Prophet Daniel interceding with uplifted hands in prayer, (c) license from GoodSalt.com, original artwork from Pacific Press artist. Used with permission.