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Literature / Epistle of Jude

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One of the General Epistles that make up the New Testament. In this epistle, Jude the brother of James, the Lord's brother, warns Christians to "contend earnestly for the faith that has once been delivered to all the saints."

Structure of the book:

  • Greeting (Jude verses 1 and 2)
  • Judgment on false teachers (Jude verses 3 to 16)
  • A call to persevere (Jude verses 17 to 23)
  • Doxology (Jude verses 24 and 25)

This book contains examples of:

  • All Crimes Are Equal: Averted in this rendering of Jude 1:7:
    The people of Sodom and Gomorrah and the towns around them also did evil things. They freely committed sexual sins. They committed sins of the worst possible kind. There is a fire that never goes out. Those people are an example of those who are punished with it. (New International Readers' Version)
  • The Armies of Heaven: Jude refers to a statement made in the non-canonical Book of Enoch that Enoch was believed to have made himself.
    Enoch, the seventh generation from Adam, also prophesied of these men, saying, “Look! The Lord is coming with ten thousand of His holy ones, to execute judgment on everyone, and to convict all who are godless of all their wicked deeds that they have committed, and of all the terrible words that godless sinners have spoken against Him.” (Jude 1:14-15)
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  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Verse 9 is possibly based on The Assumption of Moses, an apocryphal Jewish writing.
  • Call-Back: Several references to the Old Testament in this epistle, such as the Exodus, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, Cain's murder of his brother, Balaam's prophecy for profit, and Korah's rebellion.
  • Fallen Angel: From Jude 1:6:
    Likewise, the angels who did not keep to their first domain, but forsook their own dwelling, He has kept in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day.
  • Good Is Not Soft: From Jude 1:5-7:
    Now I want to remind you, though you already know, that the Lord saved the people out of the land of Egypt and afterward destroyed those who did not believe. Likewise, the angels who did not keep to their first domain, but forsook their own dwelling, He has kept in everlasting chains under darkness for the judgment of the great day. Just as Sodom and Gomorrah, and the surrounding cities in like manner, gave themselves to immorality and went after different flesh, they serve as an example by suffering the punishment of eternal fire.
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  • Heroic Fire Rescue: Verse 23 tells believers to "save [others] with fear while pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment stained by the flesh," likening rescuing people from sin to rescuing people from a burning building.
  • Malicious Slander: In the International Standard Version rendering, Jude in verse 10 states, "Whatever these people do not understand, they slander. Like irrational animals, they are destroyed by the very things they know by instinct."
  • Noodle Incident: Michael's fight with Satan over the body of Moses isn't elaborated upon further and is found nowhere else in the Bible. Common theories are that either Satan tried to have the Israelites worshiping Moses or tried to drag Moses to Hell.
  • Satan: He makes his appearance in this epistle with an argument that he had with Michael the archangel:
    Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil in a dispute about the body of Moses, did not dare to pronounce upon him a railing judgment. But he said, “The Lord rebuke you!” (Jude 1:9)
  • Sinister Minister: The reason for this epistle is stated as early as Jude 1:4
    For there are some men who secretly crept in, who were marked long ago for this condemnation. They are ungodly men, who pervert the grace of our God into immorality and deny the only Lord God and our Lord Jesus Christ.

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