Contending For The Faith

Salvation
If you ever want a powerful defense for the Christian Faith Jude is an excellent book to refer to. Defending the Faith is not something new. Jude teaches the importance of not compromising the Word of God. The Word of God is priceless! You cannot manipulate God nor His Word no matter who you are. There are a lot of worldly influences that from the very beginning have tried to twist the Bible and its teachings. Many have been deceived, this is still the case today. Many worldly ways, concepts and methods have been embraced and embedded into the organized church system that are not of God. This is why it is important to know God and know His Word; of Him you can be certain and sure!!!

Jude is am actual  flesh born  brother of Christ Jesus and James who wrote the Book of James. He writes to us from the perspective of  deep faith.  He not only walked with Jesus but lived with Him as a biological brother born of the same mother, who loved Jesus.  He knows the importance of having an up close personal relationship  with the Lord. It is here that our peace can be multiplied.

Jude tells us to “Contend for the Faith!” What does this mean? Contend means to strive against difficulties, to be persistent and assert yourself. Faith means believe without seeing. “FAITH is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. This is what the ancients were commended for. By Faith we understand that the universe was formed at GOD’S command so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible…” Hebrews 11 The Bible gives us the real facts! It is was not comprised of misconstrued circumstantial evidence. Many today attempt to use the Word to control others, justify their behavior and lifestyles but are really only promoting sin.

God is powerful as a matter of fact He is OMNIPOTENT meaning He is ALL POWER! He is SUPERIOR and SUPREME! Think about it with all the millions of organized church assemblies opened in the name of God, what is going on in this world should not be! It certainly is not because of GOD all these terrible things persist. It is because there are so many wolves in sheep clothing. “They are godless men who change the grace of God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord” Saints are supposed to be believers! Not followers of the world. But, followers of Jesus Christ!

 

Too many want to be leaders that are served, rather than Servants of God! All too often you now find that some in the church instead follow the latest trends and adopt the ways of the world. No need to be jealous! Disengage from the messiness and focus on GOD! ALL you will ever need you can discover in the LORD! “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it…” Psalm 24. Want what GOD wants for you! When you “STAND” on GOD’S WORD you never have to stand alone! “GOD WILL FIGHT YOUR BATTLES” Take some time and think about it? Who are you really following?

 

We must TRUST GOD! When you know that there is a lot of false teaching going on what do you do? When you know that you have helped those that no one else would help, and they turn on you, what do you do? When you know that you have been mistreated and maligned and falsely accused what do you do? PRAISE GOD!!! Know that you are in good company because this is what happened to Jesus! When you know that manipulation and deception is present you still must remain faithful to God and His Word! Don’t let anyone pull you so low that you hate them… Don’t settle or compromise your godly principles to get access or support by the majority… Christianity is really not a popularity contest nor is God’s Church just a mere social club.  Your body is the Temple where God resides. Everyone will have to answer to the Lord at some point! So get right with GOD!

God knows what you have or have not done. Don’t become bitter. Become BETTER! Learn to better guard your heart.  If you are depressed allow the Lord His place within your life.   He can lift any  of your burdens as you yoke up with Him.   Go and Seek God first before everything else. Truly the Lord is more than able in any situation. You can with the help of the Lord rise above any circumstance. God is more powerful than what any man or woman can EVER do to you!  Exercising your faith will make you peculiar in a good way.  Let Him direct you upon your path to  healing when seeking resources or those to help you.  You must draw closer to God and TRUST HIM for yourself! This is how you build a “Solid Rock Foundation.” Seek Him above all else and put your FAITH into action.  HAVE FAITH IN GOD!  God will give you a strong sound mind. He CAN KEEP you from falling! “Do not be conformed to this world. But TRANSFORMED by the renewing of your mind!” Your true security and significance can only be found in the LORD. “If GOD is for us who can be against us!” THANK YOU LORD! & PRAISE GOD!

The Word is often used today to justify lifestyles and wrong behavior that are not sanctioned by God. Minimizing sin and embracing tolerance. Often justified under the guise of unconditional love.  Sin is anything that separates us from God. God never intended for Christianity to become a legalistic doctrinal concept of rules and regulations. The House of God is supposed to be the PILLAR of TRUTH! Focus more on the Lord than your issues. Be mindful of what is going on and remember  it is supposed to be a place where many gather to worship, thank  and praise GOD.  It is written!

Christ died so we could have an abundant spiritual life in every way. Yet today many make their issues the theme of life and ministry. Jesus did not come to build hospitals or mausoleums. He came to give us a better way of life!   He came to overcome sin in the flesh and show us how to live victorious in the Lord!  Notice what happened in His Word how he always stood for what was right. Yet he was terribly misunderstood by those who should have known better.  As a matter of fact it was the religious leaders that conspired to discredit JESUS and secretly sought to destroy Him. How ironic they called Him evil. Does any of this sound familiar?

 

No things will not always go your way. But the Lord can bring you through any situation with his peace. For; “Jesus is the Way the Truth and the Life!” The Bible is the inspired Word of God! “It is a Lamp unto our feet and a Light unto our path…”

The gift of Salvation and Eternal Life is one of the most precious gifts one can ever receive! Along with that gift comes the promise of His Holy Spirit. The Comforter and ultimate internal Teacher. Jude extends to us Mercy, Peace and Love in abundance through Christ Jesus.  When Jesus ascended to heaven He promised that the Holy Spirit would come. Jesus prepared His disciples for His departure. He told them “Nevertheless I tell you the TRUTH. It is to your advantage that I go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I depart , I will send Him to you. And when He has come, He will convict the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment; of sin, because they do not believe in Me, of righteousness, because I go to My Father and you see Me no more; of judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. I still have many things to say to you, BUT you cannot bear them now. However, when He, the Spirit of TRUTH, has come, He will guide you into All truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come…” JOHN 16

Jude known as the brother of Jesus Christ tells us that we have a duty to fight for God’s TRUTH! Not in a physical carnal way. Our weapons are not carnal! We must daily stay adorned with the spiritual armor.  Nor do our lives belong to us for we belong to God.  “PRAY also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the GOSPEL, for which I am an Ambassador in chains. PRAY that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should” See Ephesians 6 Without doubt we are in the last days and the Word of God is being fulfilled! We need not be afraid but prayerful! It is important to persevere knowing that God is with you. Jude says: “But dear friends, remember what the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ foretold. They said to you, “In the last times, there will be scoffers who will follow their own ungodly desires. These are the men who divide you. Who follow mere natural instincts and DO NOT have the SPIRIT. But you, dear friends build yourself up in your most HOLY FAITH and pray in the HOLY SPIRIT. Keep yourselves up in God’s LOVE as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring eternal life. Be merciful to those who doubt; snatch others from the fire and save them; to others show mercy, mixed with fear hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh…

One only must watch the news, read the newspaper or search online to see that time is near! “Anything goes!” There is was not only a Economic Recession but a “SPIRITUAL RECESSION” as well. Many of our churches are sometimes allowing carnal worldly teachings… Bible study on some occasions have turned to group think and mind conditioning. God never intended for us to give up our individuality.  Uniformity is not the same thing as unity. 

 

Respect for God and His Word are  all too often laid aside; carnality takes the forefront because somebody says; “I’m human” The time of increased Apostasy is definitely here! Meaning the abandoning of Faith! LORD HELP US! Anyone can be subject to error. This is why we all need His Holy Spirit to convict the heart of sin and point us to righteousness. What is righteousness? It is right living in the eyes of God! Sin is anything that separates us from God! Jude says: Remember Sodom and Gomorrah?  God has not changed. This is why Jesus left us His Holy Spirit!

Live or begin to live each day; “To GOD be the GLORY!” Having an encounter with God regularly will bring you closer to Him.  Take time throughout your day to “PRAY WITHOUT CEASING!” Shift your mind to the Lord.  This is how you stay connected to the Lord.  Remember God is omniscient he wants to open your understanding and make you even more aware. He can and  will open your “spiritual eyes.” This is also why we must contend for the Faith, know His Word and stand firm!  Thank You Holy Father for making us your Ministers/Elders and Ambassadors.

 

If you have grown slack in your commitment to God; He can speak renewal and strength into your heart! He can lift you up and take you to wherever you need to be.  We must humbly and diligently pursue TRUTH! God can bring a plan and a purpose into your life like no other! This what Jude leaves us with;  “To HIM who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before His glorious presence without fault and with great JOY to the only GOD and SAVIOR be GLORY, MAJESTY, POWER and AUTHORITY, through JESUS CHRIST our LORD, before all ages, now and forevermore! AMEN!!!”

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Where Is Your Faith ?

Sons of soul revivers help me picture
“Now Faith is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1. Faith is so important that it is mentioned over three hundred times in the BIBLE. Faith means to have a firm persuasion. Having Faith means much more than just to say you believe. It goes much further! Faith is developed through Prayer, Devotion, Bible Study, and the actual application of God’s Word to your life. Faith is also part of the Lord’s spiritual armor. It is “By Faith we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what is visible.” Hebrews 11:3. Faith is NOW not after the fact has materialized! “For we walk by Faith not by sight.” II Corinthians 5:7

When you truly trust God your Faith will see you through any and all circumstances or situations. Abel, Deborah, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses and Rahab, are just a few examples of the many that trusted and had Faith in God. Gideon, Barak, Samson, Jephthah, David, Samuel and the prophets beheld many miracles, faced jeers, were stoned, saw walls fall, were persecuted, misunderstood, and mistreated yet accomplished their life purpose by trusting the Lord. Notice how they all sincerely aspired to live in the presence of the Lord. They had a personal and deep intimate relationship with Him. Hebrews commends them all for their Faith; “yet none of them received what had been promised.” It is by Faith we are strengthened inwardly! Jesus Christ dwells in our hearts through Faith.

Faith is NOW!

Hebrew defines Faith as something you cannot see. Faith without works is dead. When your Faith is truly in GOD you trust that in His time He will fulfill whatever it is that He has said or promised. Take a moment to take an open and honest personal inventory of everything that is happening in your life. Guess what God already knows as well! Despite your circumstances; good, bad, or indifferent you can rest assured that your Faith makes all the difference in the world as to how you will now proceed. In order to successfully run the race of life we must keep our focus on the Lord. Laying aside any weight or sin helps us to run with endurance. When life hurdles appear God will impart to you His patience and direction. You can not change anything that has happened “it is what it is” As you fix your eyes on “Jesus, the Author and perfector of our Faith” He will help you arise to the challenges as well as the celebrations of life. Your daily trust and reliance on God is where your true security and significance should reside. This will give you sure footing and strong solid rock foundational spiritual roots to help you withstand the storms of life. Your Joy in the Lord is where you will find strength when you keep your eyes on Him. The joy of the Lord is not contingent on your circumstance. Faith is NOW!

The key to being a Christian is the Faith we have in Jesus Christ. Do you know the importance of His sacrificial death on the cross that atoned for our sins? It was so we could live life to please Him! Did you know our lives, our homes, our marriages, families and our worship should reflect we are His children? How do we do this? Titus tells us that “You must teach what is in accord with sound doctrine. Teach the older men to be temperate, worthy of respect, self controlled, and sound in Faith, love and in endurance. To teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good…” The natural man or woman does not accept, value, nor understand the things of God. This is why the Word says to “let this mind be in you that was also in Christ Jesus.” In order to understand the things of God it is crucial that you lay aside your way and your will and let His Word be a “lamp unto your feet and a Light to your path.” Having the proper perspective will teach you how very important it is to live life and study His Word for His approval and not the approval of man. This is why we are told to “Trust in the Lord will all of our hearts and lean not to our own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge Him and He will direct our path.” Proverbs 3: 5&6. Too often God is an after thought or optional choice when dealing with life. This compromise often has favorable results with man; yet results in moving you away from God. Learn to wait on God and patiently seek His way.

God’s way will give you peace and contentment that surpasses the understanding of man! God wants to be the Primary Force in your life. Being a Christian is really a chosen lifestyle. God does not force His way upon you. Faith produces commitment and faithfulness. It means to sincerely and earnestly attempt to live life to please God. Commence to truly Live, Sing, Worship and Praise Him. It really makes all the difference in the world! “LET the WORD of Christ dwell richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving THANKS to God the Father through Him” Colossians 3: 16&17.

God always has a better way. According to Ephesians He has already blessed us with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places. As His child we have been sealed and promised the gift of His Holy Spirit. God truly is faithful you can always count on Him! Now you must trust Him and step out on Faith. Remember Faith is not something that you can see. Always remember, you must exercise patience and your Faith and trust must rely in Him. He tells us if our Faith is “as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you” Matthew 17: 20. The key to this is you must desire His will to be done. It is with God we can do the impossible. This way He receives the credit. To GOD be the GLORY! God keeps His promises. You can fully trust God to work everything out for your good.

Always keep in mind that absolutely nothing gets by God. He knows all that is past, current and will be. Be encouraged knowing “God is not unjust; He will not forget your work and the love you have shown Him as you have helped His people and continue to help them.” It is by Faith and patience we inherit His promises. We can patiently endure whatever is necessary because we know that God in His time will work everything out for our good. It is by Faith we accept His precious gift of eternal life. One of the most important elements in life is having Faith in GOD. “Without Faith it is impossible to please Him, for he, who comes to GOD, must believe, that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” Romans 1:16& 17.

GOD IS FAITHFUL in His time you will reap the promises and He will give back, restore, refuel and replenish you in His time. God knows when you are sincere. We are living in interesting times. Just keep your eyes fixed on the Author and finisher of your Faith. God is able to “keep you from falling and to present you before His glorious presence without fault and with great Joy!” You can say Hallelujah anyhow! God is awesome! As I mentioned before Hebrews records in its “Hall of Faith” many Old Testament heroes who trusted in God and displayed their Faith in unique ways. Lay aside every weight and anything that hinders you from going forth in the Lord! When you truly believe; it will be a priority to live your life to please GOD! Faith results in faithfulness! Who or what are you faithful to? “Now Faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” FAITH IS NOW!

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