Sunday, December 10, 2017

Jude, Part 8

In today's study we find that men who reject authority reject God.

The conclusion of the matter is this. The commonality that I see with these three is that while God offered them all life, they chose death. They chose to “do it” their way instead of God’s. The Bible says in Proverbs 14:12 “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” The sad thing is that God does not desire that anyone should go to Hell. The Bible says in John 3:17, "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” It is not the will of God that any should go through the punishment that Israel, the fallen angels, and Sodom and Gomorrah went through. 2 Peter 3:9 says, “The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is  longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.” It is the desire of God that everyone should go to heaven. No one has to make the bad decisions that Israel, the angles, and the people of Sodom and Gomorrah made.

I am reminded of what Jesus said in Luke 13:34 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!” He again said in Revelation 3:20 “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.” God loves people and desires that they should all be saved and not one perish.

Verse 8: “Likewise also these filthy dreamers defile the flesh, despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.” In other words, these men resemble rebellious Israel, the fallen angels, and Sodom and Gomorrah. Their sins are the same. Paul also tells us four things about these guys. First, they are “filthy dreamers”. In other words, they dream things up as they go along. They are not grounded in the Word of God. I believe that a call to ministry is a call to prepare. Too many people run headlong into ministry unprepared. I know 1 John 2:27 about not needing anyone to teach us, but still we also have so many around us who have been there, done that, walked in ministry for a few years. The Bible also says that there is “wisdom in a multitude of counselors” and to “study to shew thyself approved unto God” as well.

I’m afraid that too many in ministry take pride in their lack of education. It’s like they think that their ignorance makes them more dependent upon God and therefore more usable for His service. My friend, the pride of the uneducated is no better than the pride of the educated. God looks at the heart and not what’s in the frame on your office wall. God will use any man or woman who has a desire to serve Him with a whole heart.

If you are going to be a good Bible teacher, you must sit at someone’s feet. It may be a
man of God that you respect tremendously or a professor at a Bible college or seminary. Still,
the end result is an education from somewhere. I personally think that the days of guarding the
“ivy walls” of the colleges are over. Internet has introduced an entirely new, effective, convenient and cheaper way to educate men and women for the ministry. Use it to your advantage.

Second, they “defile the flesh.” They pollute themselves with sin because of their corrupt passions and evil desires. The end result is that they do not live holy and separated lives. They is no doubt that this issue is becoming more and more of a problem as the end draws near. I believe that even the church is for the most part, worldly. Why? – Because we have allowed so much of the world into the church in the name of trying to reach the world. We have become so relevant that we are no longer relevant. Oh, I know, I’ve heard every argument under the sun about how the only way to reach them today is by changing the methods, etc…, but sadly the end result is that there are fewer people in the church today than there was yesterday. The methods are not working. I believe that they are simply confusing the issue. We have churches full of people today who do not know their right hand from their left when it comes to spiritual matters. They proof is the worldly lives that they live both inside
and outside of the church house.

Third, they “reject authority.” Men who despise authority despise the Bible…because the Bible regiments and regulates and exhorts a man and a woman to walk in holiness. Men do not reject the Bible because it contradicts itself, but because it contradicts them. It goes against what they want. However, the writer of Proverbs wrote, “Whoever loves instruction loves knowledge, but he who hates correction is stupid." (Proverbs 12:1). Sure, the Bible is going to rub us the wrong way from time to time. What’s wrong with that? Jesus did say in Matthew 10:34-36, “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man's foes shall be they of his own household.” Also, the Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 3:16-17 that "All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works."

The scripture is our authority. Where and when we come into conflict with it – we are wrong and must make the necessary adjustments. An old preacher said one time, “Where God puts periods, don’t you go putting question marks.” We do not stand in judgment of the Bible. The Bible stands in judgment of us.

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