Keep in God’s Love
Two very important themes that come out of a careful study of 2 Peter and Jude are the themes of God judging his enemies and saving his people. And in the context of 2 Peter and Jude, there’s a very strong emphasis on the reality of God judging those who are in rebellion against him. And that’s intended as comfort for his people.
And yet, in the midst of that, there’s also an emphasis on God’s ability to save his people out of the midst of this judgment. And that salvation comes through union with Jesus Christ. Alongside of that, you also see, especially in Jude, this idea that God keeps, or preserves, his people, while at the same time calling his people to keep themselves in the love of God.
Jude begins with the reference to believers being kept by Jesus Christ, or kept for Jesus Christ, and then it closes with a doxology that begins with the line, “Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling . . . ”
And in the middle of that, there’s this beautiful little section where Jude exhorts believers to “keep yourselves in the love of God.” And the way that we do that is by building ourselves up in the faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, and setting our hope in and waiting for the mercy that the Lord Jesus Christ will show us when he returns for his people.
Matthew S. Harmon is the author of The God Who Judges and Saves: A Theology of 2 Peter and Jude.
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