Context Is Crucial To Understanding

You will never understand me if you do not understand this blog. There are so many Christians that do not have the stomach for warfare. They have no situational awareness of spiritual dynamics or demonstrative tough love.

What I mean by what I just said is this, modern Christianity has been infiltrated by a political spirit which says we must “reach across the aisle” in order to come to an agreement we can all live with. Friends, that is not why Jesus came and it is most certainly not how Jesus lived His life. Jesus came to take over!

Jesus came for conviction, not consensus! So repent!

Everyone who does not surrender surrenders their right to represent Him in the world!

To the Christians wanting to “reach across the aisle”, doing good equals being nice, and being kind means never speaking into the spiritual malaise and compromise in a region.

By the way, there is only one verse in the Bible with the word ‘nice’ in it and it is not a nice verse.

Jeremiah 12:6 NAS

“For even your brothers and the household of your father, even they have dealt treacherously with you, even they have cried aloud after you. Do not believe them, although they may say nice things to you.”

There are prophetic voices today that are called to speak into the spiritual superficiality of the saints in their sphere of influence. People not in tune with the Voice the prophetic voices are proclaiming find it easy to sit in judgement, all the while railing against the judgment prophetic voices are adjudicating.

Can’t we all get along is not a Biblical or Christian core value. It is a seeker sensitive superficial substitute for kingdom love and confrontation. It is powerless to change a life for it only holds a form of godliness while denying God’s power. Paul said to have nothing to do with people holding on to that subversion of kingdom life. I choose not to hang around with or listen to anyone who has a form of being godly without really representing God.

Too many Christians and their leaders are more concerned with advancing their kingdom and padding their pocket book than advancing God’s kingdom and reproducing Him in His people. Convenience is their core value and making sure they have their supplies stock piled controls their ability to speak truth when truth is not in vogue.

There is a gross misunderstanding on what “doing good” means. Jesus went about “doing good” but He also healed all those “oppressed with the devil.” This means so much more than casting devils out of people. I believe it includes that but advances to the place of casting people out of the devil.

Kevin, what do you mean? What I mean is Jesus functioned in full deliverance mode. He delivered people oppressed by the devil but He told people to stop playing around with the devil.

Here is a verse that is quoted often but misunderstood, misdiagnosed and misapplied.

Galatians 6:10

“So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household  of the  faith.”

What does doing good mean? And do you see how the good that is done is done for the good of everyone?

First of all, doing good Biblically has everything to do with setting and upholding a righteous standard. It involves doing the honorable thing that brings forth excellence and accomplishes the greatest benefit for everyone involved! Sometimes ‘doing good’ means someone gets their feelings hurt. Like those folks in the Temple who watched as Jesus tossed them and all their stuff out of His House!

For those who are not getting it yet, our standard is the life and ministry of Jesus, and the Word of God.

Secondly, the word kindness in the New Testament has everything to do with being fit for service, being useful and making the most of God using us to represent Him in the world. It also means ensuring those in your sphere of influence are fit for service and useful to God. There is no room for the unfit or useless in the fight of faith, or the fight for faith!

Jude 1 Weymouth

“33 Dear friends, although I was eager to write to you about the salvation we share, I found it necessary to write to you and urge you to continue your vigorous defense of the faith that was passed down to the saints once and for all. 4 For some people have slipped in among you unnoticed. They were written about long ago as being deserving of this condemnation because they are ungodly. They turn the grace of our God into uncontrollable lust and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.”

The greatest danger to Christianity are Christians who “slipped in unnoticed.” To slip in unnoticed one would have to have an appearance that creates a sense of security, all the while carry dangerous core values of compromise.

These slippery pretenders turn the grace of God into uncontrollable lust and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. By the way, Jude was writing to “believers”. These false believers believe that because God has already forgiven every sin of every person in Christ they can continue living like they have never personally met Jesus, much less gotten saved.

Lust does not necessarily have to do with illicit sexual behavior, although it can include it. Lust is a heart matter than drives a person to pursue that which is not theirs, or those who are not theirs. A person can lust for happiness and pursue relationships with people who will meet their felt needs but turn them away from the Lordship of Jesus.

They also “deny” our only Master and Lord. They don’t deny His existence for that would immediately give them away as pretenders. No, these smooth talkers look like saints but live like devils, in the church.

Jude says they are “deserving of condemnation because they are ungodly.” In other words, they are not like God nor are they really God’s. Only those who are “in Christ” are free from condemnation. When someone says, “I am a Christian” but are living like a sinner then condemnation is their reward.

Paul writes stating these type of people “dilute” the message of the Cross. Reducing the powerful effect of the Cross of Christ can manifest in many ways. One of those is to lower love to a level less than how Jesus demonstrated love. Some of his “love” was very confrontational and emotional! God’s love is not benign, wimpy or without an expected end.

God’s love manifested in the Man Christ Jesus so God could redeem fallen man! God did not send Love for the sake of running a pointless errand. Some Christians have reduced Love to something without real meaning, or purpose. As I have said many times before, there are way too many Christians who have created a Jesus made in their image.

Love came for the purpose of redemption, reconciliation, restoration, reformation and especially revolution. If your love does not include those things then your love is pointless, and redemptively powerless!

Jude writes, “to continue your vigorous defense of THE faith that was passed down once for all.”

To “defend vigorously” literally means to enter into the struggle for the integrity of THE faith. If you are not willing to enter that battle then it is better for you to stay out of the struggle. It comes from two Greek words – 1] to endeavor with strenuous zeal, to contend with all adversaries, and to compete against all opponents; and 2] to position yourself in, on, near, above, against, across and before that which is being contended against.

This word literally means to engage in close hand combat! Are you up for that? If not, stay out of the way! Everything and everyone that resists THE faith and the faithful is to be exposed, uprooted and removed. It may take until harvest time but it will happen.

If you cannot believe it just read how Jesus and the apostles dealt with those who were in their way! You will have to read without all your religiously biased opinions.

This ‘the faith’ is the one Jesus lived, modeled, died to defend, rose from the dead for, ascended into heaven in order to pour the Holy Spirit out on saints who are called to go and represent Him to a world He loves.

There are a lot of “faiths” preached but they are not congruent with THE faith Jesus handed off to the saints.

For instance, Paul  exhorts Timothy, the apostle in Ephesus with this,

1 Timothy 1

“18 This command I entrust to you, Timothy, my son, in accordance with the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you fight the good fight, 19 keeping faith and a good conscience, which some have rejected and suffered shipwreck in regard to their  faith. 20 Among  these are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan, so that they will be taught not to blaspheme.”

Paul felt the need to “command” his spiritual son Timothy to do some very specific things.

  • Use the prophecies spoken to him to fight the good fight
  • Keep faith and a good conscience

But then he tells Timothy something so “not Christian”, at least to the “contemporary”, “relevant”, and “seeker” Christian. Paul handed Hymenaeus and Alexander over to Satan so they would stop blaspheming. To blaspheme means they were saying things that were not true. Misrepresenting truth can begin benignly but end up being a malignancy! Today we would call these men fake news reporters.

Hymenaeus’ name means belonging to marriage. He was a heretic because he presented himself as being a legitimate part of the Bride of Christ. He misrepresented Christ to people in the Body and misrepresented himself to the Body. He was a Christian in name only.

Alexander’s name means man defender. His sin must have been siding with Hymenaeus instead of upholding God’s honor and the honor of God’s man, Paul. Alexander was a man pleaser so he lived his life defending men who did not defend God.

Paul “handed” them over to Satan. Paul simply removed his apostolic covering from their lives and Satan had free reign to mistreat them. Paul had already turned a non repentant believer in Corinth over to Satan for not repenting of his grievous sin.

To “hand over” means to put into the use of another. In essence what this means is Paul’s feeling was – “If you want to behave like the devil then I take my hands off of you and place you in the hands of the one you are truly serving.”

How is that for seeker sensitive Christian love? The problem with this kind of loving discipline is in our day there are hundreds of churches a “Christian” can run to to escape the discipline of the Lord.

There are churches in every town that would love to have another body to count as they count the number of people attending their “worship” services. In the first century this type of behavior was not possible. There was one church in every city so it was very easy to pastor the population.

The writer of Hebrews details which faith Jude is writing about:

Hebrews 2 Amplified

“1 SINCE ALL this is true, we ought to pay much closer attention than ever to the truths that we have heard, lest in any way we drift past [them] and slip away. 2 For if the message given through angels [the Law spoken by them to Moses] was authentic and proved sure, and every violation and disobedience received an appropriate (just and adequate) penalty, 3 How shall we escape [appropriate retribution] if we neglect and refuse to pay attention to such a great salvation [as is now offered to us, letting it drift past us forever]? For it was declared at first by the Lord [Himself], and it was confirmed to us and proved to be real and genuine by those who personally heard [Him speak]. 4 [Besides this evidence] it was also established and plainly endorsed by God, Who showed His approval of it by signs and wonders and various miraculous manifestations of [His] power and by imparting the gifts of the Holy Spirit [to the believers] according to His own will.”

Look at the warnings and the instructions on the faith!

Warnings: About the great gift of salvation [THE faith]

  • We must pay much closer attention
  • We must not drift past
  • We must not slip away
  • How shall we escape
  • If we neglect
  • If we refuse to pay attention

Instructions: About the great salvation [THE faith]

  • It [message of salvation / message of THE faith]
  • Was declare at first by the Lord Himself – Originator of THE faith
  • It was continued by those who heard Him – 2nd generation of the keepers of THE faith
  • It was confirmed to us – 3rd generation of the keepers of THE faith
  • It was established and endorsed by God
  • God approved of it
  • By signs, wonders, various miraculous manifestations of His power
  • By imparting the gifts of the Holy Spirit to the believers according to His own will

My friends, that is THE ONLY Faith that is relevant! It was the only relevant faith in the 1st century and it is the only relevant faith in the 21st century.

Is that the faith that you profess?

Is that the faith that you defend?

If not, then you did not get the THE faith Jesus started or you are too compromised to defend God’s honor!

Dr. Kevin M. Drury, DMin

A Hisstorymaker

 

 

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