Jude 1:1
New International Version
Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and a brother of James, To those who have been called, who are loved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ:

New Living Translation
This letter is from Jude, a slave of Jesus Christ and a brother of James. I am writing to all who have been called by God the Father, who loves you and keeps you safe in the care of Jesus Christ.

English Standard Version
Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James, To those who are called, beloved in God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ:

Berean Study Bible
Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and a brother of James, To those who are called, loved by God the Father, and kept in Jesus Christ:

Berean Literal Bible
Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, To those called, having been loved in God the Father and having been kept in Jesus Christ.

New American Standard Bible
Jude, a bond-servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, To those who are the called, beloved in God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ:

King James Bible
Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:

Christian Standard Bible
Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and a brother of James: To those who are the called, loved by God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ.

Contemporary English Version
From Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and the brother of James. To all who are chosen and loved by God the Father and are kept safe by Jesus Christ.

Good News Translation
From Jude, servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James--To those who have been called by God, who live in the love of God the Father and the protection of Jesus Christ:

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Jude, a slave of Jesus Christ and a brother of James: To those who are the called, loved by God the Father and kept by Jesus Christ.

International Standard Version
From: Jude, a servant of Jesus the Messiah, and yet a brother of James. To: Those who have been called, who are loved by God the Father and kept safe by Jesus, the Messiah.

NET Bible
From Jude, a slave of Jesus Christ and brother of James, to those who are called, wrapped in the love of God the Father and kept for Jesus Christ.

New Heart English Bible
Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to those who are called, loved by God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ:

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
Yehuda, the Servant of Yeshua The Messiah and the brother of Yaqob, to the Gentiles called by God The Father, beloved ones, and kept by Yeshua The Messiah.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
From Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and brother of James. To those who have been called, who are loved by God the Father, and who are kept safe for Jesus Christ.

New American Standard 1977
Jude, a bond-servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to those who are the called, beloved in God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ:

Jubilee Bible 2000
Jude, slave of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to those that are called, sanctified in God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ:

King James 2000 Bible
Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:

American King James Version
Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:

American Standard Version
Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are called, beloved in God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ:

Douay-Rheims Bible
Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James: to them that are beloved in God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called.

Darby Bible Translation
Jude, bondman of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to the called ones beloved in God [the] Father and preserved in Jesus Christ:

English Revised Version
Judas, a servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are called, beloved in God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ:

Webster's Bible Translation
Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:

Weymouth New Testament
Jude, a bondservant of Jesus Christ and a brother of James: To those who are in God the Father, enfolded in His love, and kept for Jesus Christ, and called.

World English Bible
Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to those who are called, sanctified by God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ:

Young's Literal Translation
Judas, of Jesus Christ a servant, and brother of James, to those sanctified in God the Father, and in Jesus Christ kept -- called,
Study Bible
Greetings from Jude
1Jude, a servant of Jesus Christ and a brother of James, To those who are called, loved by God the Father, and kept in Jesus Christ: 2Mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.…
Cross References
Matthew 13:55
"Isn't this the carpenter's son? Isn't His mother's name Mary, and aren't His brothers James, Joseph, Simon, and Judas?

Mark 6:3
Isn't this the carpenter, the son of Mary and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon? Aren't His sisters here with us as well?" And they took offense at Him.

Luke 6:16
Judas son of James, and Judas Iscariot, who became a traitor.

John 14:22
Judas (not Iscariot) asked Him, "Lord, why are You going to reveal Yourself to us and not to the world?"

John 17:11
I will no longer be in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to You. Holy Father, protect them by Your name, the name You gave Me, so that they may be one as We are one.

Acts 1:13
When they arrived, they went to the upper room where they were staying: Peter and John, James and Andrew, Philip and Thomas, Bartholomew and Matthew, James son of Alphaeus, Simon the Zealot, and Judas son of James.

Romans 1:1
Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, and set apart for the gospel of God,

Romans 1:6
And you also are among those who are called to belong to Jesus Christ.

1 Peter 1:5
who through faith are shielded by God's power for the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time.

2 Peter 1:1
Simon Peter, a servant and apostle of Jesus Christ, To those who through the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ have received a faith as precious as ours:

Jude 1:3
Beloved, although I made every effort to write you about the salvation we share, I felt it necessary to write and urge you to contend earnestly for the faith entrusted once for all to the saints.

Jude 1:21
keep yourselves in the love of God as you await the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you eternal life.

Treasury of Scripture

Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, to them that are sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ, and called:

A.

Matthew 10:3
Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus;

Lebbeus, Thaddeus.

Mark 3:18
And Andrew, and Philip, and Bartholomew, and Matthew, and Thomas, and James the son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus, and Simon the Canaanite,

Thaddeus.

Luke 6:16
And Judas the brother of James, and Judas Iscariot, which also was the traitor.

John 14:22
Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?

Acts 1:13
And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James.

the servant.

John 12:26
If any man serve me, let him follow me; and where I am, there shall also my servant be: if any man serve me, him will my Father honour.

Acts 27:23
For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve,

Romans 1:1
Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God,

them.

John 15:16
Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

John 17:17,19
Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth…

Acts 20:32
And now, brethren, I commend you to God, and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them which are sanctified.

preserved.

John 6:39
And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.

John 10:28-30
And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand…

John 17:11,12,15
And now I am no more in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to thee. Holy Father, keep through thine own name those whom thou hast given me, that they may be one, as we are







Lexicon
Jude,
Ἰούδας (Ioudas)
Noun - Nominative Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 2455: Of Hebrew origin; Judas, the name of ten Israelites; also of the posterity of one of them and its region.

a servant
δοῦλος (doulos)
Noun - Nominative Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 1401: (a) (as adj.) enslaved, (b) (as noun) a (male) slave. From deo; a slave.

of Jesus
Ἰησοῦ (Iēsou)
Noun - Genitive Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 2424: Of Hebrew origin; Jesus, the name of our Lord and two other Israelites.

Christ
Χριστοῦ (Christou)
Noun - Genitive Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 5547: Anointed One; the Messiah, the Christ. From chrio; Anointed One, i.e. The Messiah, an epithet of Jesus.

and
δὲ (de)
Conjunction
Strong's Greek 1161: A primary particle; but, and, etc.

a brother
ἀδελφὸς (adelphos)
Noun - Nominative Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 80: A brother, member of the same religious community, especially a fellow-Christian. A brother near or remote.

of James,
Ἰακώβου (Iakōbou)
Noun - Genitive Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 2385: The same as Iakob Graecized; Jacobus, the name of three Israelites.

To those who [are]
Τοῖς (Tois)
Article - Dative Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 3588: The, the definite article. Including the feminine he, and the neuter to in all their inflections; the definite article; the.

called,
κλητοῖς (klētois)
Adjective - Dative Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 2822: From the same as klesis; invited, i.e. Appointed, or, a saint.

loved
ἠγαπημένοις (ēgapēmenois)
Verb - Perfect Participle Middle or Passive - Dative Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 25: To love, wish well to, take pleasure in, long for; denotes the love of reason, esteem. Perhaps from agan; to love.

by
ἐν (en)
Preposition
Strong's Greek 1722: In, on, among. A primary preposition denoting position, and instrumentality, i.e. A relation of rest; 'in, ' at, on, by, etc.

God
Θεῷ (Theō)
Noun - Dative Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 2316: A deity, especially the supreme Divinity; figuratively, a magistrate; by Hebraism, very.

[the] Father,
Πατρὶ (Patri)
Noun - Dative Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 3962: Father, (Heavenly) Father, ancestor, elder, senior. Apparently a primary word; a 'father'.

and
καὶ (kai)
Conjunction
Strong's Greek 2532: And, even, also, namely.

kept
τετηρημένοις (tetērēmenois)
Verb - Perfect Participle Middle or Passive - Dative Masculine Plural
Strong's Greek 5083: From teros; to guard, i.e. To note; by implication, to detain; by extension, to withhold; by extension, to withhold.

in Jesus
Ἰησοῦ (Iēsou)
Noun - Dative Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 2424: Of Hebrew origin; Jesus, the name of our Lord and two other Israelites.

Christ:
Χριστῷ (Christō)
Noun - Dative Masculine Singular
Strong's Greek 5547: Anointed One; the Messiah, the Christ. From chrio; Anointed One, i.e. The Messiah, an epithet of Jesus.
(1, 2) Address and greeting.

(1) Jude.--As to the Jade who here addresses us see Introduction, I.

The servant of Jesus Christ.--Better, a servant of Jesus Christ. There is nothing to show that these words indicate an evangelist, although it is more than probable that he was one: his writing this Epistle is evidence of the fact. The words may have a side reference to the ungodly men against whom he writes, who are not "servants of Jesus Christ." As he does not say that he is an Apostle, the inference is that he is not one. Contrast Romans 1:1 (where see Note on "servant"); 1Corinthians 1:1; 2Corinthians 1:1; Galatians 1:1; Ephesians 1:1; Colossians 1:1; 1Timothy 1:1; 2Timothy 1:1; 1Peter 1:1 (where "Apostle" is used without "servant"); and Titus 1:1; 2Peter 1:1 (where "Apostle" is added to "servant"). Excepting St. John, whose characteristic reserve accounts for it, Apostles proclaim themselves to be such in stating their credentials. Hebrews and the Epistle of St. James must be set aside as doubtful, or be admitted as illustrations of the rule. Philippians 1:1; 1Thessalonians 1:1; and 2Thessalonians 1:1 are not exceptions: St. Paul is there combined with others who are not Apostles. The same may be said of Philemon 1:1. Moreover, there St. Paul naturally avoids stating credentials: he wishes to appeal to Philemon's affection (Philemon 1:8-9), not to his own authority.

And brother of James.--This is added not merely to explain who he is, but his claim to be heard. It is almost incredible that an Apostle should have urged such a claim, and yet not have stated the much higher claim of his own office: the inference again is that the writer is not an Apostle. Only one James can be meant. After the death of James the brother of John, only one James appears in the Acts (Acts 12:17; Acts 15:13; Acts 21:18)--James the Just, brother of our Lord (Matthew 13:15), and first Bishop of Jerusalem. (See Introduction, I.) The brother of so saintly a man, one of the "pillars" of the Church (Galatians 2:9), and holding so high an office, might claim the attention of Christians.

To them that are sanctified.--A reading of very great authority compels us to substitute beloved for "sanctified"; and the whole should probably run thus: to those who are called, beloved in God the Father, and preserved for Jesus Christ. Some prefer to take "in God the Father" with both participles: beloved, and preserved for Jesus Christ, in God the Father. The love is such as has existed from the beginning and still continues.

Here, in the first verse, we have a couple of triplets: a three-fold designation of the writer himself, as "Jude, the servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James," and a three-fold designation of his readers, as "called, beloved, preserved." In the next verse we have another triplet.

By God the Father.--Better, in God the Father. He is the sphere in which the love is displayed: it is in God that Christians love and are loved. The expression, "beloved in God," is unique in the New Testament. St. Paul sometimes writes "God our Father" (Romans 1:7; 1Corinthians 1:3, et al.), and at first this was the more common expression; sometimes "God the Father" (Galatians 1:1; Galatians 1:3, et al.).

And preserved in Jesus Christ.--Better, preserved for Jesus Christ: i.e., preserved to be His in His kingdom. This preservation has gone on from the first, and continues (John 17:2; John 17:12; John 17:24).

Called.--The word is used, in St. Paul's sense, for all Christians--all who have been called to a knowledge of God and of the gospel. (Comp. Romans 1:7; and see Note on 1Corinthians 1:24.)

(2) Mercy unto you, and peace, and love.--Another triplet, which possibly looks back to the one just preceding: called by God's mercy, preserved in peace, beloved in love. The addition "and love" is peculiar to this Epistle. "Mercy" and "peace" occur in the opening greetings of 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus, and 2 John. The three are in logical order here: mercy from God to man; hence peace between God and man; hence love of all towards all.

Be multiplied.--By God. The word, as used in salutations, is peculiar to 1 and 2 Peter, and Jude.

Verse 1. - Judas, a servant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James. The Epistle opens with a designation of the author which is brief, consisting but of two terms, only remotely, if at all, official, and having nothing exactly like it in the inscriptions of other New Testament Epistles. The writer gives his personal name Jude, or rather, as the Revised Version puts it, Judas. For while in the New Testament the Authorized Version uses the various forms, Judas, Judah, Juda, and Jude, the Revised Version, with better reason, adheres to the form Judas in all cases except those of the tribe and the son of Jacob. The name was a familiar one among the Jews, whose stock of personal names was limited. This is seen in its New Testament use. Not to speak of its occurrence as the name of the son of Jacob, and as the name of two individuals in the line of the ancestry of Jesus (Luke 3:26, 30), it appears as the name of several persons belonging to New Testament times. These include one of the brethren of the Lord (Matthew 13:55; Mark 6:3); the apostle who is called in our Authorized Version "the brother of James," but who may rather be "the son of James" (Luke 6:16; John 14:22; Acts 1:13); the traitor Iscariot; the writer of this Epistle; the rebel leader of Galilee (Acts 5:37); the man of Damascus to whose house Ananias was directed to go (Acts 9:11); the delegate, surnamed Barsabas, who was sent with Paul and Barnabas from the mother Church to Antioch (Acts 15:22, 27, 32). The writer attaches a twofold designation to his personal name. First, he terms himself "a servant of Jesus Christ," as the Revised Version puts it, not "the servant of Jesus Christ," with the Authorized Version. The curious fact has been noticed that this passage and Philippians 1:1 (in which latter, however, we have the plural form) are the only passages in which the Authorized Version inserts the definite article in the designation of the author of any New Testament book. He gives himself thus the same title as is adopted by the James whose name heads another of the Catholic Epistles, and who is taken to be his brother. It is not certain, however, what breadth of meaning is to be ascribed to the phrase. The term, "servant of Jesus Christ," or its cognate, is used as a general description of the Christian believer, apart from all reference to any particular position in the Church (1 Corinthians 7:22, etc.; Ephesians 6:6). It does not carry a strictly official sense. It seems never to designate the apostolic office as such, unless some qualifying clause is added. It stands without any such addition, it is true, in Philippians 1:1 and James 1:1. But in the former it is applied to two comrades, one of whom is not an apostle; and in the latter the person so described is in all probability not one of those who appear in the lists of the apostles. In other passages (Romans 1:1; Titus 1:1; 2 Peter 1:1) it is coupled with the official term "apostle." It is claimed by some of the best expositors, however, that in this passage, as in some others, it has an intermediate sense, meaning one who, while not an apostle proper, was charged with the apostolic work of preaching and ministering. If that is so, the writer presents himself as one occupying the kind of position which is assigned to Barnabas, Timothy, and others in the Book of the Acts. But he describes himself further as the "brother of James." The title has nothing like it elsewhere in the inscriptions of the Epistles, and, as the particle which connects it with the former clause indicates, it points to something not merely additional, but distinctive. The distinction is the relationship to another person in the Church, better known and more influential than himself. For the James here mentioned is generally, and we believe rightly, identified, not with the brother (or son) of Alpheus who appears among the twelve, but with the Lord's brother, who is represented by the Book of the Acts as in pre-eminent honour and authority in the mother Church of Jerusalem. Jude, therefore, might have called himself the "brother of the Lord." He abstains from doing so, it is supposed by some, because that title had become the recognized and almost consecrated name of James. Or it may rather be that he shrank from what might seem an appeal to an earthly kinship which had been sunk in a higher spiritual relationship. The choice of the title is at the same time a weighty argument against his belonging to the twelve. Unable to put forward any apostolic dignity or commission as his warrant for writing, and as his claim upon his readers' attention, he places himself beneath the shield of the more eminent name of a brother, who also was the author of an Epistle in all probability extensively circulated before this one was put forth. Those to whom he writes are also most carefully described. The terms of this threefold designation are unusual and somewhat difficult to construe. The text itself is not quite certain. The Received Text and our Authorized Version give the reading "sanctified," which has the support of one or two documents of good character, and is still accepted, chiefly on the ground of intrinsic fitness, by some scholars of rank. It must be displaced, however, by the reading "beloved," which has on its side three of the five primary uncials (the Vatican, Sinaitic, and Alexandrian) as well as important versions and patristic quotations, and is accepted by the best recent authorities. This, however, gives us so unusual a combination, "beloved in God the Father," that some are driven to the conclusion that the preposition has got somehow into a wrong place. Dr. Herr pronounces the connection to be "without analogy," and to admit of "no natural interpretation;" and the great critical edition of Messrs. Westcott and Herr marks the clause as one which probably contains some primitive error. Taking the terms, however, as the vast preponderance of documentary evidence presents them, we have three brief descriptions of the readers, all sufficiently intelligible, and each obviously in point. The most general of the three descriptive notes is the "called." The idea of a "call" pervades all Scripture. It appears in a variety of applications, of which the most distinctive is that of a call into the Messianic kingdom. This call is ascribed usually, we may perhaps say universally, to God himself In the Gospels we find the term "called" contrasted with the term "elect" or "chosen" (Matthew 22:14), so that the call is of uncertain issue. On the other hand, in the Epistles, at least in Pauline passages of great doctrinal significance (Romans 8:28, 30; Romans 11:29, etc.), the election appears as the cause, the call as the result; and the latter then is of certain issue, or, in the language of theology, effectual. It is held by many that throughout the Epistles, or at least throughout the Pauline group, the term has uniformly the sense of a call not merely to the membership of the Church, but to final salvation. Whether this is the case, and how the usage of the Epistles is to be harmonized with that of the Gospels, are questions which require further consideration. It appears, however, that in the Epistles the idea of the election and the idea of the call often lie so near each other that they seem to be different expressions of one Divine act, and that an act which makes its object sure. In passages like the present, the "called" seems parallel to the "elect" of the inscriptions of 1 Peter and 2 John, and probably has the deeper Pauline meaning - a meaning which has its roots no doubt in the Old Testament conception of the certain election of a believing remnant under the theocracy (1 Kings 19:18; Isaiah 59:20, etc.). The parties addressed are described more particularly as "beloved in God the Father." The difficulty which is felt by the best interpreters of the present day in explaining the preposition "in" as it stands in this unusual connection, appears also in the renderings of the old English Versions. Tyndale and Cranmer, indeed, follow the Received Text, and translate "sanctified in God the Father." The Genevan also gives "sanctified of God the Father." But Wickliffe and the Rhemish Version follow the other text (which is that of the Vulgate), and translate it, the former, "to thes that ben loued that ben in God the fadir;" the latter, "to them that are in God the father beloved." The difficulty is met by a variety of doubtful expedients. Some cut the knot by imposing upon the preposition the sense of "by" or the equally alien sense of "on account of." Some take it to mean "in the case of God," or "as regards God," which comes nearer the point, but is yet short of what is intended. Others would render it "within the sphere of God," understanding the readers to be described as the objects of the writer's love - a love which is no mere natural affection, but inspired by God and of spiritual motive; the objection to which is that it is out of harmony with the other designations, which describe the readers from the view-point of the Divine care. The idea, therefore, seems to be that they are the objects of the Divine love, that they have been that and continue to be that in the way of a gracious union and fellowship with himself, into which they have been introduced by God the Father. The preposition, therefore, has the mystical force which it has in the familiar phrase, "in Christ" - a force which it may also have where God is the subject. All the more so that the title "God the Father" seems to refer usually, if not exclusively, to God as the Father of Christ. The third clause describes the readers, according to the Authorized Version, as preserved in Jesus Christ. Here the Authorized Version follows Tyndale, Cranmer, and the Rhemish Version. That rendering has also been adopted by some recent interpreters of importance. It is wrong, nevertheless. For there is no instance elsewhere of the carrying over of a preposition from one clause to another in such a connection as this. Not less mistaken is Wickliffe's "kept of Jesus Christ." The Genevan Version, however, gives the correct rendering, "reserved to Jesus Christ," and the Revised Version translates it very aptly, "kept for Jesus Christ." The verb is the one which is used in 1 Peter 1:4 to describe the inheritance as "reserved." It occurs frequently in the Gospels, somewhat rarely in the Pauline Epistles, and there oftenest in those of latest date (1 Timothy 5:22; 1 Timothy 6:14; 2 Timothy 4:7). It occurs with marked frequency in the Catholic Epistles and the Apocalypse. It is most characteristic of 1 John, 2 Peter, and Jude among these Epistles. The idea is that of being preserved by the Divine power until the coming of Christ - a preservation of which there was the more need to be assured in face of the falling away which threatened the Churches, and had indeed begun in some. Christ prayed his Father to keep, through his own Name, those that were given him (John 17:11). Paul prays God to keep his converts blameless unto the coming of Christ (1 Thessalonians 5:23). These designations tell us nothing of the locality or circumstances of the readers, but limit themselves to spiritual characteristics. The relations in which the several clauses stand to each other is also a matter of dispute. The Authorized Version makes them coordinate clauses, "To them that are sanctified... and preserved... and called." It is better to take the "called" as the subject, and the two participles as the qualifying epithets, translating, with the Revised Version, "To them that are called, beloved in God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ." But it perhaps best represents both the force and the order of the original to render it, "To them that are beloved in God the Father, and kept for Jesus Christ, called ones." 1:1-4 Christians are called out of the world, from the evil spirit and temper of it; called above the world, to higher and better things, to heaven, things unseen and eternal; called from sin to Christ, from vanity to seriousness, from uncleanness to holiness; and this according to the Divine purpose and grace. If sanctified and glorified, all the honour and glory must be ascribed to God, and to him alone. As it is God who begins the work of grace in the souls of men, so it is he who carries it on, and perfects it. Let us not trust in ourselves, nor in our stock of grace already received, but in him, and in him alone. The mercy of God is the spring and fountain of all the good we have or hope for; mercy, not only to the miserable, but to the guilty. Next to mercy is peace, which we have from the sense of having obtained mercy. From peace springs love; Christ's love to us, our love to him, and our brotherly love to one another. The apostle prays, not that Christians may be content with a little; but that their souls and societies may be full of these things. None are shut out from gospel offers and invitations, but those who obstinately and wickedly shut themselves out. But the application is to all believers, and only to such. It is to the weak as well as to the strong. Those who have received the doctrine of this common salvation, must contend for it, earnestly, not furiously. Lying for the truth is bad; scolding for it is not better. Those who have received the truth must contend for it, as the apostles did; by suffering with patience and courage for it, not by making others suffer if they will not embrace every notion we call faith, or important. We ought to contend earnestly for the faith, in opposition to those who would corrupt or deprave it; who creep in unawares; who glide in like serpents. And those are the worst of the ungodly, who take encouragement to sin boldly, because the grace of God has abounded, and still abounds so wonderfully, and who are hardened by the extent and fulness of gospel grace, the design of which is to deliver men from sin, and bring them unto God.
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