Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James,To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ: May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you. Beloved, although I was very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I found it necessary to write appealing to you to contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.
Over the last week or so, I’ve had more than one conversation about faith. Many are wondering what is happening in our world and I think the message of Jude is worth considering today. In this short book (1 Chapter) Jude is imploring us to “contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints.”
Contending for the faith communicates our need to stand, but what is the faith?
First, the Faith is singular. There are competing religious worldviews, but there is only one Faith. I remember sitting around a table with some colleagues some time ago who disagreed with my contention that Christ alone is the source of life. In their minds, my view was too narrow, but is it?
In Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, he described what may be the earliest definition of Christian belief – “For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures” (1 Corinthians 15: 3-4).
Paul reveals the significance of the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and that if we believe this message that we are saved. While there are many other details, our Faith is dependent on the person of Christ.
Take a couple of minutes to read the book of Jude and let’s meet again tomorrow to consider how the challenges confronted in the first century are similar to what we face in the twenty-first century.