Jude 11 01v4 Whose Damnation is Just
Sermon #11 Jude Sermons
Title: “Whose Damnation is Just”
Text: Jude 1:4
Subject: God’s Justice in Judgment
Date: Tuesday Evening — November 30, 2004
Tape # Jude #11
Readings: Bobbie Estes & David Burge — Romans 9
The title of my message tonight is — “Whose Damnation is Just.” While you are turning to Jude 4, listen carefully to what I have to say before we look at our text for tonight.
I always find it encouraging when people who visit our worship services, hear tapes of our services, or one of our broadcasts, or read something I have written ask, what kind of church this is, or “What kind of Baptist are you?”
In this day (when practically every form of religion is so pigeon holed and categorized that it appeals to some segment of our fallen race) to know that we are preaching the gospel of the Christ in such Bible terms that natural men are shut up to the Word of God and cannot identify us with some particular brand of religion, I know we are on the right track!
In Spurgeon’s day no denomination could brand him and say he belongs to us! The hyper Calvinists called him an Arminian, the Arminians called him a hyper Calvinist, the legalists called him an antinomian, and the antinomians called him a legalist. The established churches hated him and the Baptists finally disowned him, but true believers of every persuasion loved him and understood his message.
The natural man understands logical Calvinism. He can easily identify with Arminianism. He has no difficulty with modern fundamentalism! And he can be very comfortable with liberalism. Any natural man can see and understand legalism, works, and freewillism. But the free gospel of God’s free and sovereign grace in Christ, redemption accomplished by the shed blood of our Savior, complete atonement, perfect righteousness and salvation altogether by grace through the merits of Christ’s finished work, without anything added to it by us must be revealed to the heart by the Spirit of God.
The easy-believism and decisionism of the modern church and today’s preachers produce nothing but a religious profession, religion with neither knowledge nor understanding. There is nothing to it but deception. I once heard Bro. Scott Richardson say, “Today’s religion is so slick that a man can swallow it and never know he’s got it and lose it and never know he had it.”
· Blessed is the preacher who can shut men up to free and sovereign grace, and yet lovingly, sincerely call upon all who hear his voice to look to Christ and be saved.
· Blessed is the preacher who knows that ‘salvation is of the Lord,” who has the patience to wait upon the Lord to regenerate, awaken and call his elect, and yet pray for the salvation of sinners, urge them to close with Christ, and beseech them to “be reconciled to God.”
· Blessed is the preacher who can preach with equal force and confidence both the preservation and perseverance of all who trust Christ. He will not turn away from us and we will not depart from him.
· Blessed is the man who can rejoice in imputed righteousness, and yet hunger and thirst after righteousness and long to grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ.
· Blessed is the preacher who can find and preach both justification and sanctification at the cross. We do not go to Calvary for justification and then to Sinai for sanctification. We are “complete in him.”
· Blessed is the preacher who can preach prophetical truth in such a way that his hearers are looking for the returning Christ and not just the return of Christ!
· Blessed is the preacher who administers believers” baptism, presides at the Lord’s Table, and oversees the business of the Lord’s church, not according to the “way we do it in our circles and according to our custom and tradition,” but according to the Word of God!
· And blessed is the preacher who can preach with absolute clarity and forcefulness both the total sovereignty of God and the total responsibility of man, — Who can proclaim without reservation that God saves whom he will and that “whosever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved,” — Who can declare in the same breath that God’s purpose is eternal, unalterable and sure and “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved!” — Who can declared plainly that God’s all elect shall be saved, and they alone, while at the same time he tells sinners that if they go to hell it will be their own fault and theirs alone!
With that as the background for my message, I want us to read Jude 1:4.
(Jude 1:4) “For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Jude here warns us to beware of false prophets who creep into the church perverting the gospel of Christ. Then he tells us that they were “before of old ordained to this condemnation.” It does not take a nuclear physicist to understand that Jude is telling us here that those men were ordained of God to condemnation, to everlasting condemnation. They are “vessels of wrath fitted to destruction.”
Are we to understand by that that God arbitrarily saves some and arbitrarily sends others to hell? God forbid! If God saves you, he will do so in mercy and truth, because he has made you fit for glory in Christ, because he has put away your sin by the sacrifice of Christ, made you to be the very righteousness of God in Christ, and given you the very nature of Christ in regeneration. If he sends you to hell he will do so in justice and truth, because you have fitted yourself for destruction by your ungodliness.
It was the Apostle Paul who spoke so plainly in Romans 9 about God’s sovereignty, declaring that God has a people whom he is determined to save, vessels of mercy “afore prepared unto glory,” that he has “mercy on whom he will have mercy, and whom he will he hardeneth.” It was the Apostle Paul who wrote about those “vessels of wrath fitted to destruction.” He records in that 9th chapter of Romans, God’s word to Rebecca, “Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.” And he tells us that this was done according to God’s eternal purpose, “the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth.” And it is this same Apostle Paul who tells us that those “vessels of wrath fitted to destruction” are people “whose damnation is just” (Rom. 3:8).
That is exactly what Jude asserts in the second half of verse 4 and on through verse 19 in his Epistle. He tells us that those slithering deceivers who creep into the church and seek to pervert the gospel, “who were before of old ordained to this condemnation,” shall indeed perish and that when they do it will be by the act of God’s absolute justice. They are men “whose damnation is just.”
Proposition: I want you to see and see clearly that any who perish under the wrath of God in hell perish because of their own evil deeds.
If you are saved, it will be God’s work and God’s work alone. — But if you perish, if you go to hell, it will be the result of deliberate effort on your own part. You will have no one to blame but yourself. And you will blame yourself forever. Your damnation will be just. You shall eat the fruit of your own way forever!
Yes, these false prophets described in our text “were before of old ordained to this condemnation,” and the purpose of God stands sure. Yet, the reason why they perish is set before us in this verse as being
· Their Character — “Ungodly Men.”
· Their Conduct — “Turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness.”
· Their Creed — “Denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.”
I. First, Jude tells us about the character of all false prophets. They are all “ungodly men.”
“Ungodly!” — No one word more accurately describes our race than this. — “Ungodly!” The word means “destitute of the fear of God, the knowledge of God, and the worship of God.” It implies separation from God. “Ungodly men” are people who are given over to sensuality and the lusts of their own flesh. Because they are “ungodly men” their damnation is just.
Some false prophets live in that which all men naturally recognize as ungodliness. Jim Jones and David Koresch are recognized even by journalists as “ungodly men.” The scandalous behavior of Jim Baker and Jimmy Swaggart which were made public a few years ago were things that all men, except those who were duped by those men, recognized as the deeds of “ungodly men.”
But most false prophets do not act like those men. Most false prophets are nice, moral, sweet “ungodly men.” They preach in the name of God and from the Word of God. They teach people to be good and do good. They are preachers of righteousness (human righteousness) (2 Cor. 11:15). But they are “ungodly men.” Their ungodliness is described by Jude as that which is portrayed in…
II. Jude describes their conduct of ungodliness in these word, “turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness.”
I have already shown you that this principally means that they assert that the gospel of Christ, the doctrine of salvation by grace alone, free, unconditional, absolute, immutable and indestructible grace, the preaching of salvation by Christ alone without any works by us is a licentious, evil doctrine that will lead men to say, “Let us sin that grace may abound.” But there is more to it than just that. — “Turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness” is turning or transferring it from its original nature, design, and use, to something else.
· Ungodly men turn the grace of God into lasciviousness by scoffing at it, making it a thing to be despised, laughed at and mocked.
· They turn the grace of God into lasciviousness who make God’s grace a common thing, trampling under foot the Son of God and counting the blood of the covenant an unholy (common or universal) thing.
· Men turn the grace of God into lasciviousness when they tell us that God’s mercy, love and grace are universal, embracing all men, therefore we must embrace all. That is exactly what we see in the religious world around us today, when we are told that it is evil to condemn any evil practice (homosexuality, adultery, fornication, etc.) as evil.
· To suggest, as many do, that the grace of God makes it alright to do evil is “turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness.” I have heard men say, ‘since the grace of God is wide enough to cover any sin, a man can sin as he likes. He will be forgiven. The more he sins, the greater the grace. God’s grace is big enough to take care of that. As long as a man trusts Christ’s his character and conduct are irrelevant!”
III. Third, Jude tells us that the damnation of these false prophets, indeed, the damnation of all who perish is just, because of the creed of all “ungodly men.” This is their creed. — “Denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.”
If you do not bow to and trust Christ, if you refuse to believe God, that is your creed (1 John 5:10). Your unbelief is not a matter of indifference, but an angry, rebellious, proud, self-willed denial of God and of Christ.
(1 John 5:10) “He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son.”
But Jude is here speaking specifically about false prophets. He is showing us why false prophets shall be justly condemned. There are no charges of immorality laid against them in these 25 verses. Had their lives been notorious, for any breaches of the moral law, surely Jude would have stated as much. Had their conduct been notoriously corrupt, in flagrant acts of licentiousness, they could not have crept into the church
When Jude calls these false prophets “ungodly men,” he is telling us that their conduct was directly leveled against our God, his character and his work, his Word and his gospel. They turn “the grace of God into lasciviousness,” asserting that the grace of God that brings salvation is an evil doctrine. And they deny the only God and our Lord Jesus Christ. How could they be said to deny the only Lord God? It cannot be imagined that they deny his Being. They could not do that while professing to believe him and preach in his name. It cannot be imagined that they deny Christ’s being, his incarnation, his holy life, his death on the cross, or his resurrection, while at the same time being unrecognized by true believers as false prophets. What, then, is Jude telling us, when he speaks of these men as “ungodly men…turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness and our Lord Jesus Christ.” He is telling us that their perversion of the gospel of the grace of God, making the mercy, love and grace of God common, universal things, is a virtual denial of God’s being as God and a denial of Christ, our God and Savior.
· Those who deny God’s absolute sovereignty in predestination, in creation, in providence, and in grace deny his Godhead (Ps. 115:3; 135:6).
(Psalms 115:3) “But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.”
(Psalms 135:6) “Whatsoever the LORD pleased, that did he in heaven, and in earth, in the seas, and all deep places.”
· Those who deny that he who is our God (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit), the God who rules all things everywhere, is the only Lord God, virtually deny his very Being as God (Ex. 34:14; Dan 3:28-29; 4:24-26, 34-39
(Exodus 34:14) “For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God:”
(Daniel 3:28-29) “Then Nebuchadnezzar spake, and said, Blessed be the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, who hath sent his angel, and delivered his servants that trusted in him, and have changed the king’s word, and yielded their bodies, that they might not serve nor worship any god, except their own God. (29) Therefore I make a decree, That every people, nation, and language, which speak any thing amiss against the God of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, shall be cut in pieces, and their houses shall be made a dunghill: because there is no other God that can deliver after this sort.”
(Daniel 4:24-27) “This is the interpretation, O king, and this is the decree of the most High, which is come upon my lord the king: (25) That they shall drive thee from men, and thy dwelling shall be with the beasts of the field, and they shall make thee to eat grass as oxen, and they shall wet thee with the dew of heaven, and seven times shall pass over thee, till thou know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever he will. (26) And whereas they commanded to leave the stump of the tree roots; thy kingdom shall be sure unto thee, after that thou shalt have known that the heavens do rule. (27) Wherefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable unto thee, and break off thy sins by righteousness, and thine iniquities by showing mercy to the poor; if it may be a lengthening of thy tranquility.”
(Daniel 4:34-37) “And at the end of the days I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up mine eyes unto heaven, and mine understanding returned unto me, and I blessed the most High, and I praised and honoured him that liveth for ever, whose dominion is an everlasting dominion, and his kingdom is from generation to generation: (35) And all the inhabitants of the earth are reputed as nothing: and he doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou? (36) At the same time my reason returned unto me; and for the glory of my kingdom, mine honour and brightness returned unto me; and my counsellors and my lords sought unto me; and I was established in my kingdom, and excellent majesty was added unto me. (37) Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honour the King of heaven, all whose works are truth, and his ways judgment: and those that walk in pride he is able to abase.”
· Those who deny the absolute efficacy and irresistibility of God’s will, purpose, grace and work, deny his very Being as God. — A weak, helpless, frustrated God is no God at all!
Every believer rejoices in the sovereignty of God. God’s saints rejoice to hear him say, “Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own?” (Matt. 20:15). Nothing in this world is more comforting to the believer’s heart than the knowledge of the fact that “Our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased” (Ps. 115:3). Yet, in this day of religious darkness and confusion, there is no truth of Holy Scripture for which we must more earnestly contend than God’s dominion over all creation, his sovereignty over all the works of his hands, the supremacy of his throne and his right to sit upon it. We rejoice in God’s sovereignty. Yet, there is nothing revealed in the Bible that is more despised by worldlings and self-righteous religionists and more commonly denounced by false prophets of every religious denomination.
Natural, unregenerate, unbelieving men and women are happy enough to have God everywhere, except upon the throne of total, universal sovereignty. They are happy to have God in his workshop, creating the world and naming the stars. They are glad to have God in the hospital to heal the sick. They are pleased to have God in trouble to calm the raging seas of life. And they are delighted to have God in the funeral parlor to ease them of pain and sorrow. But God upon his throne is, to the unregenerate man, the most contemptible thing in the world. And any man who dares to preach that it is God’s right to do what he will with his own, to dispose of his creatures as he sees fit, and save whom he will, will be hissed at, despised, and cursed by this religious generation. Still, it is God upon the throne that we love, trust, and worship. And it is God upon the throne that we preach.
God’s sovereignty is so basic and fundamental that it is impossible to understand any doctrine taught in the Bible until we recognize and have some understanding of the fact that God is sovereign. A God who is not sovereign is as much a contradiction as a God who is not holy, eternal, and immutable. A God who is not sovereign is no God at all. If the god you worship is not totally sovereign, you are a pagan, and your religion is idolatry. You would be just as well off worshipping a statue of Mary, a totem pole, a spider, or the devil himself as to worship a god who lacks total sovereignty over all things.
Then Jude adds this to the false prophet’s creed, for which he is completely deserving of God’s wrath. He denies our Lord Jesus Christ. Again Jude is not telling us that these men deny the historic facts revealed in this Book about Christ, but that they by their doctrine virtually deny that Jesus Christ is himself God. They do so by…
· Denying the Merit and Efficacy, Perfection and Fulness of His Righteousness as Our Representative.
· Denying the Efficacy and Accomplishment of Redemption by His Blood.
· Denying the Efficacy of His Intercession.
(Isaiah 42:1-4) “Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles. (2) He shall not cry, nor lift up, nor cause his voice to be heard in the street. (3) A bruised reed shall he not break, and the smoking flax shall he not quench: he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. (4) He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law.”
(2 John 1:7-11) “For many deceivers are entered into the world, who confess not that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist. (8) Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. (9) Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. (10) If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: (11) For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.”
(Galatians 1:6-9) “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of Christ unto another gospel: (7) Which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ. (8) But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed. (9) As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.”
(1 Thessalonians 5:21-24) “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. (22) Abstain from all appearance of evil. (23) And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. (24) Faithful is he that calleth you, who also will do it.”
The damnation of all “ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ” is just. And your damnation shall be just, too, if you die in your rebellion and unbelief as “ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.”
(Proverbs 1:23-33) "Turn you at my reproof: behold, I will pour out my spirit unto you, I will make known my words unto you. (24) Because I have called, and ye refused; I have stretched out my hand, and no man regarded; (25) But ye have set at nought all my counsel, and would none of my reproof: (26) I also will laugh at your calamity; I will mock when your fear cometh; (27) When your fear cometh as desolation, and your destruction cometh as a whirlwind; when distress and anguish cometh upon you. (28) Then shall they call upon me, but I will not answer; they shall seek me early, but they shall not find me: (29) For that they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD: (30) They would none of my counsel: they despised all my reproof. (31) Therefore shall they eat of the fruit of their own way, and be filled with their own devices. (32) For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them. (33) But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil."