Jude 3, 4
“Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints,” Jude 3.
Jude begins this letter with the statement that he desired to write a letter concerning salvation, but something compelled him to send a warning first. Jude had to first warn the believers about the danger of false teachers among them. The salvation of the believers was not at risk, but the salvation of others was. There was also danger of the church being led astray. So, Jude instructed the believers to contend for the faith.
To contend simply means, “to compete and fight for something.” Jude was urging the people to put up a challenge to those who would seek to lead them away from God’s truths. He said that God has given this “faith” or truth once for all time. We have been given God’s Word. God has revealed to us His will and His truths. Now that we have the Scripture completed, there is no need of any additions or new revelations.
Even in our current day false teachers are trying to bring a new twist to biblical truths. There are those that seek to change the eternal truths to fit into today’s secular culture. Do not be fooled! Contend for the faith! Just as counterfeit “men of god” were creeping in and presenting false teaching in Jude’s day, they are still active in our day. Be ready to contend!
JUST A THOUGHT
What are some ways you are contending for the faith on a daily basis?
A Fool hath spoken
In speaking of false teachers, Peter says that they will be “clouds without water”, and that they will be brought into bondage by what overcomes them. While many compromise truth for pleasure or popularity, there are others that are overcome by their own intelligence. Such a one was Crawford Howell Toy, who was born on March 23, 1836. Baptists must not forget C.H. Toy who resigned from Southern Baptist Seminary and moved to Harvard and became Unitarian and a celebrated professor from that institution. God had provided Toy with every opportunity to succeed as a champion of Fundamentalism. He had an outstanding education, incubation into sound doctrine, the opportunity of walking with great men such as John A. Broadus, who he boarded with. He wooed and won the hand in engagement of the lovely missionary Charlotte “Lottie” Moon, who he would later lose because of his infidelity. He was noted for his bravery as he fought for the Confederacy during the Civil War under the direct leadership of Robert E. Lee. He was wounded and captured by the Union forces, and he utilized his time studying Hebrew, which he would later become a foremost authority. After the war he studied in Europe and no doubt began to drink the poison of liberalism. Toy was an intellectual giant. To this day it is not difficult to find his articles and writings. Yet in the zenith of his walk among outstanding Bible preachers and professors he would imbibe Darwinism and shipwreck his faith. The same Darwinism that godly Baptists steadfastly resisted in spite of the nearly overwhelming pressure of the intelligentsia of the day. What a fool was Toy in spite of his great intellect. And his former student would prove wiser than her teacher by refusing his hand in marriage.
Dr. Greg J. Dixon, adapted from: This Day in Baptist History III (David L. Cummins), pp, 170 – 172.