The Book of JUDE
James J. Barker
THE TERRIBLE HISTORY OF APOSTASY
- The key verse in the book of Jude is verse 3. The book is a warning regarding religious apostates (vs. 4).
- As we continue on in our study of the book of Jude, we see that Jude gives three well-known illustrations from the OT in verses 5—7.
- Jude says these “are set forth for an example” (vs. 7).
- Peter also says the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah was an example “unto those that after should live ungodly” (II Peter 2:6).
- In I Corinthians 10, the apostle Paul refers to several OT incidents, and then says, “Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition” (I Cor. 10:11).
UNBELIEF AFTER COMING OUT OF EGYPT (vs. 5).
- Jude speaks here of the unbelieving Israelites who died in the wilderness. First God “saved” them (delivered them out of Egypt), but afterward God “destroyed them” because of their unbelief (Jude 5).
- These Israelites saw how God sent plagues upon the Egyptians. They saw how God parted the Red Sea and drowned Pharaoh’s army.
- They saw God perform many miracles, yet God killed them for their unbelief. The idea here is that the # 1 sin of the apostates is their unbelief.
- According to the Bible, one may be saved and then become guilty of unbelief. Hebrews 3:12 says, “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.”
- Jude 5 is talking about the destruction of the flesh, not eternal damnation. First Corinthians 5:5 says, “To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.”
- First John 5:16 refers to the “sin unto death.”
- Ananias and Sapphira were struck dead for lying to the Holy Spirit (Acts 5).
- In I Corinthians 11:29, 30 it is taught that sickness and death can come upon those who take the Lord’s Supper in an unworthy manner.
THE ANGELS WHICH KEPT NOT THEIR FIRST ESTATE
- Jude 6 and II Peter 2:4 should be compared with Genesis 6:1-7. Regarding these Scriptures, there is some disagreement among Christians. For example, the Scofield Study Bible says the “sons of God” in Genesis 6:2 were not the “angels which kept not their first estate” in Jude 6.
- Scofield identifies the “daughters of men” with the godless line of Cain, and “the sons of God” with the godly line of Seth.
- Scofield says the “sons of God” are the descendants of Adam’s son Seth. However, if that is the case, why doesn’t the Bible plainly say “sons of Seth”?
- I strongly believe these “sons of God” are angels, specifically “the angels which kept not their first estate” (Jude 6). They are referred to as “the angels that sinned” in II Peter 2:4 (cf. Job 1:6; 2:1; 38:7).
- I knew a professor who taught that the angels in Jude and II Peter 2 are simply fallen angels, i.e. devils or demons or unclean spirits, etc.
- I asked him why these fallen angels are “reserved in everlasting chains” (Jude 6), while other fallen angels freely roam the earth. For example, in Mark 5:9 the demon told Jesus his name was “Legion: for we are many.” There were about 50 soldiers in a Roman legion.
- The professor admitted he could not answer that question.
- Genesis 6:1 says, “And it came to pass, when men began to multiply on the face of the earth…” This obviously refers to all men (entire human race), not just the sons of Seth.
- “Sons of God” in the OT refers to angels. It is not until the NT that believers are called “sons of God” (cf. John 1:12).
- Some say that “took them wives” must refer to marriage, and Jesus said, “For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven” (Matt. 22:30).
- But Genesis 6:2 could be translated “they took them women.” In other words, Genesis 6:2 is not talking about legal marriage, but illicit relations.
- You may recall that when angels visited Sodom, the wicked Sodomites said to Lot, “Bring them out unto us, that we may know them” (Genesis 19:5).
- These angels appeared as men. And so did the “sons of God” in Genesis 6.
- Genesis 6:4 says, “There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare children to them, the same became mighty men which were of old, men of renown.”
- The Hebrew word translated “giants” is Nephiliim. It literally means “fallen ones,” and they apparently were the offspring of demons and women.
- Pagan mythology teaches that the gods (all pagan gods are devils) cohabited with human women to produce giants (e.g., the “Titans”).
- These “mighty men” and “men of renown” (Gen. 6:4) would refer to the heroes and demigods of heathen mythology. For example, the Greek hero Hercules is supposedly the son of Zeus and the mortal woman Alcmene.
- How could “giants” be born to the sons of Seth and the daughters of Cain?
- The word for “hell” in II Peter 2:4 is the Greek word Tartarus (only reference in Bible). In Greek mythology, Tartarus is the prison house of the Titans (cf. Jude 6).
- Even after God acted swiftly and imprisoned the wicked angels, and then sent the flood upon the world, there is evidence that this sin occurred again. For example, Numbers 13:33 and Deut. 2:11 refer to giants.
- The same Hebrew word translated “giants” in Deut. 2:11, 20 is translated “dead things” in Job 26:5; and “the dead” in Proverbs 2:18 and Isaiah 14:9.
- There are several references to the offspring of these demons and women. Goliath is an example of how some of them lasted on the earth and reproduced themselves for many generations.
- Occultic literature is replete with this kind of wicked lawlessness. The dictionary defines an “incubus” as “an evil spirit supposed to lie upon persons in their sleep and especially to have sexual intercourse with women by night.”
- A “succubus” is a “demon assuming female form to have sexual intercourse with men in their sleep.”
THE DESTRUCTION OF SODOM AND GOMORRAH
- The words “even as” in Jude 7 tell us that the sin of the Sodomites was similar to the sin of the angels, i.e., “giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh” (Jude 7).
- HA Ironside says, “It must be admitted that the following verse (7) in Jude seems to corroborate” the view that the sons of God in Genesis 6 are the fallen angels in Jude 6 and II Peter 2:4.
- Note the words, “in like manner, giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh.”
- God destroyed all the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah with the exception of Lot and his two daughters. But it wasn’t just a temporal fire that killed them. They are now “suffering the vengeance of eternal fire” (Jude 7).
- The destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah is referred to twice in Deuteronomy, four times in Isaiah, three times in Jeremiah, once in Lamentations, six times in Ezekiel, then once by Amos and Zephaniah.
- It is mentioned six times by our Lord in the Gospels, once by Paul in the book of Romans, then once by Peter, once by Jude, and once in the book of Revelation.
- Why so many times? Jude 7 says, “for an example.” This filthy sin is referred to in Romans 1:26 as “vile affections.” In Leviticus 18:22 and 20:13, God calls it an “abomination.”
- Today, religious apostates are promoting so-called homosexual marriage and civil unions, homosexual ministers, etc. God will judge them for it.
- In the San Francisco area, the regional body of the Presbyterian Church (USA) voted 167-151 Tuesday night in support of a lesbian deacon’s application, despite the denomination’s ban on openly gay ministers. Lesbian Lisa Larges said after the vote that she was proud of the church members’ decision, despite the heavy opposition.
- “The church is a beautiful, messy thing,” she said. Well, she is right about the Presbyterian Church (USA) being a mess, but it is not beautiful. It is ugly and it is evil.
- When you look at all three incidents, they all ended in death and destruction (Jude 5—7).
- The fierce judgment and wrath of God awaits all apostates.