This theme of the wickedness of antinomian doctrine and practice, and God’s hatred of it, Jude now begins to reinforce by example from holy history.  First (probably in consideration of the fact that there were many Jewish believers in the early church), he points them to Israel in the wilderness.  That nation had received unparalleled favor from God, in being delivered from Egyptian bondage, and seeing their enemies drowned in the same sea through which God had made a path for them.  But though God had so markedly favored the sons of Jacob, He still sternly judged their sins.  Jude speaks of Him “destroying them that believed not.”  It was not many days after victory at the Red Sea that the people began complaining against God and against Moses, a trend which never stopped until they were almost at the borders of the promised land.  They had seen God’s deliverance from Egypt, they ate of the manna He provided, and drank water from the rock.  But each time a new crisis arose, they murmured against God, railed upon Moses, and on certain occasions even desired to return to captivity in Egypt.

What all this manifested was an evil heart of unbelief, an unbelief that was often accompanied by the adoption of wicked pagan practices.  And it was for this unbelief, a refusal to believe in their gracious God Who had shown them such marvelous wonders, and for their immorality, that they were destroyed by the sword, by serpents, by earthquakes, and many other disasters.  Truly, unbelief which leads to evil behavior is a deadly snare from which the churches of Christ must flee with great haste.

Advertisements