Is it possible for a person to reject the Lord Jesus Christ after they have experienced his grace, love, and mercies? In as much as this is difficult to imagine, unfortunately, some do find a way to reject Jesus Christ and this is known as apostasy. To reject Christ is to go back into bondage, captivity after you have been set free. It is deeply sad to witness brethren who walk away from their faith in God. Renouncing or rejecting Jesus Christ is not a strange thing that happens. In fact, the Bible records people who denied God in their time and today we have these references as believers to learn from and guard our hearts.
This week, I invite you all to soak in the letter Jude wrote to all believers. This letter was written especially to speak on this issue of apostasy. Jude the half-brother of our Lord Jesus Christ takes his time to discuss the history, causes, the tragic results of apostasy and concludes with how we can guard our hearts not fall into this captivity of the enemy to become apostates. Read entire chapter here (NLT version)
In this post, I want to highlight a few key things we can learn from Jude’s letter to contend for the faith we have in our Lord Jesus Christ.
(1) Faith in God is a gift entrusted to Believers by God’s Grace
Dear friends, although I was very eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I felt compelled to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to God’s holy people. – Jude 1:3
Our ability to believe in God is a gift we received from God by His grace. Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God (Romans 10:17). It is a great treasure given to us to know the way, the truth and the life who is our Lord Jesus (John 14:6). As such we ought to guard and hold on strongly to it. Jesus Christ cautions his disciples in Luke 22:31 “Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. 32 But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” The enemy seeks after our faith to devour it (1 Peter 5:8). Beloved in Christ, please recognize your faith as a priceless treasure and contend for it.
(2) Keep God’s word and teaching in your heart to guard your faith
17 But, dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold.18 They said to you, “In the last times there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires.” 19 These are the people who divide you, who follow mere natural instincts and do not have the Spirit. – Jude 1:17
In my perspective, the world is getting worldly as the seconds go by. Every passing hour draws us one less hour closer to the end times. Be on guard Beloved in Christ, those who leave the faith will attempt to cause others to leave their faith as well. It is God’s word in your heart that will enable you to resist temptations, tests, and deceptions. Keep God’s word in your heart to know how to discern. There is a very thin line between what is right and what is almost right, God’s word is the sharpest sword that can guide you into the truth at all times.
(4) To guard your heart, you must:
- Build each other up
- Pray always in the power of the Holy Spirit
- Wait on God
- Be merciful and gracious to those wavering in their faith
- Be an intercessor for the lost
- Be cautious and hate sins
20 But you, dear friends, must build each other up in your most holy faith, pray in the power of the Holy Spirit,21 and await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ, who will bring you eternal life.In this way, you will keep yourselves safe in God’s love.22 And you must show mercy to[h] those whose faith is wavering. 23 Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others,[i] but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives.
Now to borrow the concluding words of Jude, now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault. All glory to him who alone is God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord. All glory, majesty, power, and authority are his before all time, and in the present, and beyond all time! Amen.
Always remember that Jesus Christ dearly loves you <3.