This past weekend’s message was about Jude, 5. That’s verse 5 in Jude. Jude is a short little book, only 25 verses, 1 chapter. So when we reference it we only say the book, and the verse.
Jude writes “Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.”
It’s an interesting verse. It’s referring to the Exodus – when Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt. We are told that the same Jesus that died on the cross is the one who judged unbelievers 1500 years earlier. How is that possible? The answer is that Jesus is God, the Son. He’s the Second person of the Trinity, and is eternal. And he was there when the Red Sea was parted. He was there to provide manna to the Israelites in the desert. He was there to give them water, and all they needed.
But, he was also there when Moses went up on Mt. Sinai to receive the 10 Commandments. When Moses took longer than expected to return, the Israelites created a golden calf to worship, instead of God.
Jesus was there when the Israelites chose to worship foreign gods, such as the Moabite god, Baal. And, it was Jesus who judged them.
The problem is that there were some that were included in Israel that did not actually believe in God. They merely went along for the ride, enjoyed the blessings of food, water, freedom, etc…but they did not actually believe.
This isn’t an image of Jesus that we like, is it? It goes against what we might think of him, but it is what Scripture says. Jesus has in the past judged those that refused to worship him, and he will do so again.
If we want to draw a comparison to 21st Century America, we should realize that within our culture there are many good, decent, honest, hard-working men and women that love their families…but they don’t trust in Jesus. They go along with the crowd, but don’t have a personal faith. Just like the unbelieving Israelites that went along for the ride, but did not actually believe.
The good news is that this same Jesus offers love and forgiveness to anyone if they come to him, and he has promised to never turn us away. We are promised in John 1:12 that “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,”
That means anyone. It does not matter who you are. It does not matter what your sin is. If you trust in Jesus, you can become a child of God.
I don’t want to be one of those people merely going along for the ride.