JUDE — A CALL TO ARMS 2
Jude the Servant
God said that there is coming a time when people would rather hear a lie than hear the truth. Note what God gives us in 2 Peter 2:1-2, “But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of.”
The Word of God teaches that many people will follow the damnable heresies taught by false teachers. In 2 Peter 3:1-3 the Bible says, “This second epistle, beloved, I now write unto you; in both which I stir up your pure minds by way of remembrance: That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour: Knowing this first, that there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts.”
These scoffers have always existed, but we are living in an intense time of scoffing. The Bible says that the reason they scoff is that they are walking after their own lusts. They would rather have people say that they are right than say that God is right.
There are twenty-five verses in the book. The first verse says, “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called.”
I. The Birth of This Servant
This letter begins with the identity of the person who is writing. When we receive letters, we look at the end of the letter to find who wrote it.
The human author of this letter is a man named Jude. This particular Jude says of himself that he is the servant (this word means “bondslave”) of Jesus Christ. The Bible says in Matthew 13:53-55, “And it came to pass, that when Jesus had finished these parables, he departed thence. And when he was come into his own country, he taught them in their synagogue, insomuch that they were astonished, and said, Whence hath this man this wisdom, and these mighty works? Is not this the carpenter's son? is not his mother called Mary? and his brethren, James, and Joses, and Simon, and Judas?”
The name Jude we find in our English Bible is the same word as Judas. It is a form of the name Judah, a very popular Hebrew name. Judah was the chosen son of Jacob. It was from the tribe of Judah that our Saviour came. He is “the Lion of the tribe of Judah.”
There was a man named Judas or Jude in this family. He was born to Mary and Joseph after the virgin brith of Jesus Christ. Jude was the half-brother of the Lord Jesus, having the same mother as Christ. He grew up in the same home in Nazareth. There are others in the Bible with this name, but this son of Mary and Joseph we believe to be the human author of the epistle of Jude.
Again in the gospel according to Mark, chapter six, verses one and two, “And he went out from thence, and came into his own country; and his disciples follow him. And when the sabbath day was come, he began to teach in the synagogue: and many hearing him were astonished, saying, From whence hath this man these things? and what wisdom is this which is given unto him, that even such mighty works are wrought by his hands?”
As Christ spoke, people from the Nazareth area identified Him with Mary and Joseph and their family members. They said, “What is so different about Him? There is something marvellously different.” They were right. He was the virgin-born Son of God. He is the One who became man without ceasing to be God. He was God incarnate, robed in flesh. They could not explain it.
Then the people said in verse three, “Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary, the brother of James, and Joses, and of Juda, and Simon? and are not his sisters here with us? And they were offended at him.”
The Lord Jesus had more than one sister. The brothers are named here. Among this list of brothers is the name Juda.” The son of Mary and Joseph, the same Jude who grew up in the home of Jesus Christ, was, we believe, the human instrument God used to pen this book of Jude.
Jude calls himself the servant of Jesus Christ. He opens this epistle with his heavenly relationship to Jesus Christ.
One could be servant in New Testament times by being taken captive in battle or by being born into servanthood. The word used here in the first verse has do do with being born a servant, a bond slave.
He does not say, “Jude, the servant of Jesus,” speaking of the humanity of Christ. He says, “Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ,” speaking of the God-Man, the Anointed One. This is the truth for every Christian. We are born into God’s family by faith in His Son. We are to serve the Lord. Have you been born into God’s family? Are you a servant of Jesus Christ?
“If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour” — John 12:26