The Importance Of Being Earnest

Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints. For certain men whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord.  (Jude 3–4, NIV 1984). 

But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. They said to you, “In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.” These are the men who divide you.  (Jude 17–19). 

My Musings –  “Slipped in“(infiltrate), “scoffer” (bitter ridicule) and “divide” (separate).  Connotations of espionage, propaganda and dissension.  Often as effective in warfare as the casualties that actually occur on the battlefield.  One can easily see how such a strategy could use tactics such as “[changing] the grace of our Lord into a license for immorality” and “[denying] Jesus Christ [as] our only Sovereign and Lord.”  Already we can see the division this is causing in various churches between those that continue to “contend for the faith” and those that encourage and promote people to “follow their own ungodly desires.

The time will come when this “invisible” war will break out into open warfare in our daily lives with outright physical casualties to Christians.  It is already happening in many parts of the world, and the enemy is expanding his “front.”

My Advice – “The faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints,” has been passed down to our generation. Today there is a heightened urgency for us to “contend for the faith” as the time grows short.  Let’s not let the enemy “divide and conquer.” We must not be lulled to sleep by the “invisible war.” 

“A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but an idea lives on.” ― John F. Kennedy, Why England Slept.  To paraphrase, “A man may die, nations may rise and fall, but the Church must live on.”  The gates of hell must not prevail.

So, let’s speak (“the truth in love“) up.

First they came for the Christians in the communist nations, and I did not speak out— Because I did not live in a  communist country.

Then they came for the Christians in the Muslim nations, and I did not speak out— Because I did not live in a Muslim country.

Then they came for the Christians in the secularized nations, and I did not speak out—Because I did not a live in a secularized country.

Then they came for me and my church in our country—and there was no one left to speak for us.

— With apologies to Martin Niemöller.