October 23 2021
Today, Saturday October 23
A Humble Man
Jude 1:1-3 “Jude, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James, To those who are called, sanctified by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ: Mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you. Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.”
Can you imagine what it would have been like to be a half-brother of the Lord Jesus Christ? Well, the two men mentioned in the very first verse of Jude had that opportunity. And they both were led by the Holy Spirit to write a letter that becomes a part of the Holy Bible. They both begin their epistles by calling themselves the “bondservants” of Jesus Christ. They all had the same mother who was Mary, but they had a different father. The Father of Jesus was God! Jesus was virgin born! The father of Jude and James was of course, Joseph.
If one of us had written a letter and we were the half-bother of Jesus, no doubt we would have made sure that everyone knew about it. But not these two! You also might get the feeling that they grew up resenting Jesus. He was their older brother and He never got into any trouble because He never did anything wrong or even close to it. In other words, Jesus was “perfect”. He was without sin! How would you like to have a brother like that?
The Scriptures indicate that they did not believe in Him even while He was ministering (John 7:5). But after the Resurrection, James was converted (1 Corinthians 15:7), and we have every reason to believe that Jude was also saved at that time. Acts 1:14 informs us that "His brethren" were part of the praying group that was awaiting the Holy Spirit. And 1 Corinthians 9:5 states that "the brethren of the Lord" were known in the early church.
After their conversion they must have remembered the humility of Jesus. I get the idea that they must have “picked” on Jesus trying to get Him to get mad or angry. And the more that they treated Jesus with contempt, the more He responded in humility with love! Remember Jesus did not leave the carpenter shop of the family business until He was about thirty years old. It was then that Jesus begin to reveal Himself as the Messiah and perform His miracles. And even then they did not put their faith and trust in Him as the Promised Messiah.
After their conversion and they began their years of ministry, no doubt everyone knew who they were and their family relationship with Jesus. Again, I am impressed that as we study the early history of the church from the Book of Acts and the epistles we do not see these two wonderful men promoting themselves as “special” because of this relationship.
So, from the very first verse of this little letter, I trust we will follow their example of humility as they followed the example of their half-brother Jesus! Of course we will need the Lord’s grace to do this!