CALLED! SANCTIFIED! PRESERVED!
Thursday, 16 January 2020
Jude 1 : 1-15
“…To those who are called, sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ:” -Jude 1
The beginning and ending of Jude's letter are a consolation to believers - in verse 1 it describes us as "those who are called, sanctified by God the Father and preserved in Jesus Christ." All three verbs are passive. Certain versions use “loved” in place of “sanctified.” Here we see a God who calls, loves, and keeps us. Jude is very eager to begin by stressing the security of the believer in God's electing and preserving love.
When Jude says that you are “the called,” he is referring to the classic Old Testament use of the word for the people of God. Israel was called by God. Abraham was called by God out of the Ur of the Chaldeans- in this, he was called out of paganism, out of his father's land and people to be the servant of God and the friend of God. In Genesis 12:1-3 it is made clear that Abraham was called out of the world not just for his own benefit but for the glory of God and for the good of the nations of the earth. God's call on a Christian is not merely an invitation; it's a directive. We have been called into His great work.
If we look at Jesus’ prayer in the Upper Room, it was not only for His disciples, it's for you and me. John 17:26 declares that we, the believers are co-sharers in the love of the Father for the Son- as Jesus prays, “that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” Jesus asks the Father for our participation in that co-eternal love which the Father and the Son have shared from the beginning. How amazing that our Heavenly Father loves you and me just as He loves His own Son!
We are kept safe with a view to being presented to Christ. In Ephesians 5:25-27 Paul tells us something similar to what Jude tells us here. Jude says that we are “kept for Christ”; Paul tells us that truth this way, “Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her that He might present to Himself the church in all her glory.” Jesus keeps the church in order to present the church to Himself, and He keeps us that we might be for Him! It is therefore conferred that we who are in Christ are indeed richly blessed:
We have been “called” by the gospel of Christ, to which we responded when we obeyed it through our faith, repentance, confession, and baptism.
We have been “sanctified” or set apart for a holy purpose by God the Father, as He works in us through His Holy Spirit along with His Holy Word.
On the basis of our faith, we are “preserved” in Jesus Christ for eternal life.
Do we realize the magnitude of these assurances? They should induce gratitude within us. If we realize what God has done for us in Jesus Christ, we have nothing but to praise and thank Him and live for Him. May these three divine promises impact our whole view of our purpose in life.
“But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.”
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