The book of Jude is a brief letter written [most likely] by Yahudah [Judah] one of Yahshua’s siblings. Scholars have arrived at this conclusion because he describes himself as ‘a brother of James’. In those days it was more usual to describe oneself as ‘the son of’, but the apostle James’ prominence in the church in Jerusalem would be a logical reason for Yahudah’s choice. [James was known to be one of Yahshua’s siblings.] The letter is addressed timelessly to, “…those who are the called, loved by [Yahweh] the Father and kept by [Yahshua, the Messiah]” [Jude 1:1, Holman Christian Standard Bible]. I am thrilled by this description of those who love Yahshua, a description that includes you and me, twenty centuries later. How comforting it is, how safe it sounds! Called, loved and kept!
Incredibly, when Yahweh calls us, He uses our name! He knows who we are, where we live, what we think about; our hopes, ambitions, goals; our fears, heartaches and pain. There is nothing we need hide from Him, nothing we cannot confide, for we are loved. Psalm 121, traditionally sung during the Feast of Tabernacles, describes the quality of Yahweh’s care in detail. Provided by the Maker of heaven and earth [v2], it gives us stability [v3], constant, unchanging oversight and support [v3-4], unwavering protection [v5-6], and total safety from every kind of evil forever [v7-8]! Called, loved and kept!
Sometimes the troubles of life sweep over us like breakers from a turbulent sea, sometimes it can feel as though we have been hit by a tsunami. There are times when we want to cry, “Where are you, Father?” And then there are the times when life is so burdensome we can scarcely lift our heads. None of these things change the facts by one iota! Psalm 121 holds true, Jude 1:1 remains indisputable – we are called, loved and kept!
Hide this preciousness in your heart this week, take it into the storm, rest with it in the sunshine; let it steady you, encourage you, comfort you and sustain you, for you, dear believer in Yahshua, are called, loved and kept!
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James 1:2-4 Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters...
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