Contending With Grace


We often think we are on our own when it comes to living a good life which makes a difference now and in eternity.  The great news today is that as we contend in this life, we do so in light of God’s grace through Jesus, who is able to keep us on our feet!

24 To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— 25 to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.
Jude 1:24-25

Jude has just finished telling us to contend for the faith of Jesus, and lest we think that we are in this alone, Jude encourages us with God’s presence in our lives.  He acknowledges and gives glory to God that it is God who is able to keep us from stumbling.  We are to contend for the faith, yet God is the one who is undoubtedly and emphatically able to keep us from stumbling in our lives.

God is the one who is able (and who will as we trust in Jesus) to present us before himself without fault – why?  It is in the death and resurrection of Jesus that we can be blameless before God.  It is not our working or our contending which change our standing before God.

Only Jesus can do that.

Our contending for the faith affects our impact in the world.  Jesus’ contending for us in his life, death, and resurrection affects our eternity.

This should give us the great joy Jude speaks of here, and should cause us to give thanks and praise to God for his character, power, love for us and the gift of his son.  This is our call to worship this week and it rightly sets our hearts on grace and not works.

In other words, as we contend for the faith in our world and in our lives, we can do so in light of God’s grace through Jesus which sets our hearts at rest in God’s favour for us – favour which is based entirely on God’s presentation of our souls as faultless as we stand before him.

Amen.

Marc Kinna

 

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