Greeting

1 Jude, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, and the brother of James; to those who have been called, beloved in God the Father, and preserved for1 Jesus Christ: May mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.

A Call to Contend for the Faith

Beloved, while I was making every effort to write you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write you this appeal, urging you to contend for the faith once and for all delivered to the saints. For certain men have crept in unnoticed, who long ago were marked out for this condemnation;2 ungodly men who turn the grace of our God into licentiousness, and who deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

Reminders from Old Testament Times

Now I want to remind you, though you are already fully aware of this, that the Lord,3 having saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe. Moreover, angels who did not keep to their own domain,4 but left their proper dwelling-place, He has reserved under darkness in everlasting chains for the judgment of the Great Day 7—just as Sodom and Gomorrah (as well as the cities around them, which sinned in the same way as these did) gave themselves over to sexual immorality and went after strange flesh, and so were set forth as an example of those who suffer the punishment of eternal fire.

Likewise, these dreamers also defile the flesh, reject authority, and blaspheme angelic beings.5 Yet when Michael the archangel contended with the devil and disputed with him over the body of Moses, he dared not bring a blasphemous judgment against him, but simply said, “The Lord rebuke you!” 10 But these men speak evil of whatever they do not know; and like unreasoning animals, whatever they do know by nature, by these very things they are brought to ruin. 11 Woe to them, for they have gone in the way of Cain, rushed headlong for profit into the error of Balaam, and perished in the rebellion of Korah!

Marks of False Teachers

12 These men are stains6 on your love feasts, eating among you without fear, serving only themselves. They are clouds without water, carried along by the winds; late autumn trees without fruit, twice dead, pulled up by the roots; 13 raging waves of the sea, foaming up their own shame; wandering stars for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever.

14 Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam, also prophesied about these men, saying, “Behold, the Lord comes with His holy ten thousands, 15 to execute judgment on all, to convict all the ungodly of all their ungodly deeds that they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.”

16 These are grumblers, fault-finders, walking according to their own lusts; they also mouth high-sounding words, flattering people in order to gain an advantage. 17 But you, beloved, remember the words which were spoken beforehand by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ, 18 how they told you that in the last time there would be mockers, walking according to their own ungodly lusts. 19 These are the ones who cause divisions, merely natural7 men, not having the Spirit.

A Call to Persevere in the Faith

20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, eagerly waiting for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life. 22 And have mercy on those who doubt; save others, snatching them out of the fire; on others still, have mercy with fear, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.

Concluding Doxology

24 Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory, blameless and with surpassing joy, 25 to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time, now, and through8 all the ages to come. Amen.

Notes

  1. Or in, by
  2. Or possibly whose condemnation was written about long ago; ungodly .
  3. Some early mss Jesus
  4. Or positions of authority
  5. Lit. glories
  6. Or hidden reefs
  7. Lit. soulish
  8. Lit. unto