(For audio narration you may click the Forward button at left.)
The executions of Peter & Paul in Rome were part of a pattern of persecution of Christians that continued for some time throughout the Roman Empire.
In Israel, certain Jews rebelled against the cruel & heavy-handed rule of their Roman overlords. But ultimately, their rebellion was crushed & the city of Jerusalem was obliterated by Roman armies. This took place about 35 years after Jesus had returned to heaven, in partial fulfillment of things he had taught his witnesses about the end times.
During this period of tumult, Jude wrote a letter to scattered Christian friends (359). The inspired scriptures suggest that Jude was a close relative of Jesus, like James. And like James & many other people, Jude didn’t realize that Jesus was the son of God until after he had been raised from death. But then, Jude believed & became a strong witness for Jesus.
Jude’s short letter, like Peter’s last letter, contains strong warnings against false teachers, and lists some of their tactics for upsetting God’s work among believers.
Jude emphasizes that the power to overcome the lies of false teachers is found only in Jesus. He encourages believers to persevere in faith & prayer, insisting this is the key to serving other believers who are being led astray by false teachers.
- To those beginning to doubt God’s truth, we are to show mercy as we encourage their faith.
- To those who have actually begun to embrace false teachings, we are to intervene more forcefully — contending for the faith & demolishing the lies of false teachers.
Jude admonished his friends to respect the power of evil, even while hating the power of evil.
But he concluded by emphasizing the power of Jesus to bring faithful believers through all evils of this world & ultimately home to heaven.
LORD, please help us to love contending for the faith.
(359) The letter is known simply as Jude.