Now Jude loads his artillery again, and bursts forth with more terrible thunder against these enemies of Christ and holiness.  First, he lambastes them for gorging themselves in the believer’s feasts of charity without fear.  Apparently, these were feasts spread by the church in order to enhance fellowship, and to provide a sumptuous meal for the poorer brethren who rarely if ever enjoyed such bounty.  Such a love feast was meant to promote holiness and brotherly unity, which was the farthest thing from the minds of these base hypocrites and flesh pleasers.  Jude says they were “spots in your feasts of charity,” probably comparing them to a spot or blemish on a sacrifice, which would make it unacceptable to God.  Just so, the participation of these vile men in the love feasts of the church did nothing to enhance their spiritual standing with God, but actually added to their condemnation.  When they saw the unfeigned love to the brethren, and simple faith in Christ manifested by the true Christians, they should have feared and trembled to defile it, knowing in themselves that they were of a different spirit.  Instead, they feasted without fear, taking advantage of the generosity of the church, and pretending to be of one and the same faith, while in fact they were still children of the devil.

The next comparison is a very poignant one: “clouds they are without water, carried about of winds…”  A cloud without water may be admirable to look at it, but it is practically of no value.  For a moment it may provide shade, but then it vanishes away, and leaves no lasting good behind it.  So these men, while for a brief moment they may appear to be helpers to the church, soon reveal that they leave it in worse shape than before.  A cloud without rain leaves the ground even drier and more barren than when it appeared.  It pours out no water to moisten the earth and make it yield bread to the eater.  These men also contribute no good, but much damage to the field where the word of God has been sown.

Just as they can do no good to others, so they do no good to themselves, either.  They present themselves as trees in the Lord’s vineyard, and as such trees one might expect to find at least thirtyfold fruit upon their branches.  But what fruit they have soon withers, like that of the seed sown on the stony ground.  There is no deepness of earth in them, and they quickly manifest that their heart of stone has never been removed and replaced with a heart of flesh.  They are without fruit; yea, Jude says, “twice dead.”  All are by nature dead in trespasses and sins, until quickened by the Spirit of God.  By twice dead, Jude seems to indicate that their spiritual condition is worse even than that of the common unbeliever.  They are plucked up by the roots, so that there is no hope of them being watered and fertilized, and fruit appearing in the future.  So hardened are their hearts, so impudent are they in their deceit and unbelief, that it is greatly to be feared they have been given over to a reprobate mind.

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