Yesterday we were joined by Norman Gilbert of Cosheston who preached from Jude, focusing on the last two verses.
He began by asking us, “As we set put on a New Year, what is our hope?”
Hebrew 12:1-2 we need to out our faith in Jesus Christ and turn away from the things that will hinder us. Go forward so that Christ lives in us. In Christ alone we will get through 2016.
We are in a war but we cannot lose, we are in a race but we will finish it. God will preserve us. God will present us.
Jude, a half- brother of our Lord Jesus Christ, wrote this epistle to deal with the problems that had crept into the church 2,000 years ago. Yet it is still relevant today. Jude wanted to warn the church of problems. The church speaks not just about the people who are religious, it talks of a body, including different denominations, there is only one church, one body. There is only one entrance – through faith in Jesus Christ, by repentance. Jude was concerned about the church not being caught up in false teaching. The church needs to stand as one body, to stand up against false teachers. We need to take care, to hang on to the faith that was once delivered to the saints. Scripture isn’t about change and new things; be alert, be careful of new thinking, of people who want to move away from the Word. Look around at those who need help, who need evangelising. We face an enemy who can cause havoc in the church of Jesus Christ. We can’t continue the Christian walk on our own. As we go into 2016 God’s Grace will work out in our lives.
We’ll have troubles, we may have doubts and disagreements and do things we’ll be ashamed of. If it’s down to us we won’t get through. We’re fighting a battle but as a Christian we have such great resources at our disposal. We have confidence that we will have victory. We need to look to the captain of our salvation. We have a guarantee we’ll make it. Satan wants to make us feel inadequate, a failure, a hopeless case. But Christ is able to establish us. Jude shows us we will be sustained. God’s Grace will be sufficient to keep us through. Our hope is founded in Him. He is able to keep us because He lives to make intercession for us.
The path won’t be easy in 2016 but, without any shadow of a doubt, He will keep us. He preserves us. We are to evangelise. In times of darkness His Grace will be sufficient. He will preserve us to Glory. He will present us faultless before His throne. He forgives us our sins so the slate is clean. Christ’s blood is able to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. We will be presented blameless in the presence of His Glory. We can glorify and worship Him. His power and divine authority is more than able to keep us.