Today’s Scripture Readings:
Psalm 137:1-9 | Hosea 10:1-14:9 | Jude 1-25 | Proverbs 29:15-17
Today’s Scripture Focus: Jude 1-25
“These men are grumblers and faultfinders; they follow their own evil desires, they boast about themselves and flatter others for their own advantage.” vs. 6 (NIV)
Jude, in his one chapter, gives us one of the starkest warnings in the New Testament. He reminds us of the judgment of God in places like Sodom and Gomorrah. He uses strong word pictures: “they are clouds without rain, blown along by the wind, autumn trees without fruit and uprooted–twice dead. They are wild waves of the sea, foaming up their shame, wandering stars, for who the blackest darkness has been reserved forever.” He warns the faithful to stay away from these “godless men” who should expect to be judged in like manner.
What had these men done to deserve such strong words? Why did the people need to be so careful about their influence?
Of course, there was immorality, rejecting authority and slandering celestial beings. But that is not all. They were also “grumblers and faultfinders,” boasting about themselves and “flattering others for their own advantage.”
Do “grumbling” and “faultfinding” really demand such stark warnings? Boasting and flattery? We often tolerate the “sins of the tongue” and treat them as “not as big of a deal” as other sins. But they have devastating effects on people and in the life of the church. Perhaps that is why Jude includes them on his list of serious offenses.
Use your tongue to bless and not to curse. Allow it to encourage and lift up instead of grumbling and faultfinding. Don’t allow others to draw you into grumbling and faultfinding. It’s a contagious disease with devastating effects.
Tomorrow’s Scripture Readings:
Psalm 138:1-8 | Joel 1:1-3:21 | Rev. 1:1-20 | Proverbs 29:18