SOAP Devotional 2014-07-10
Scripture – Observation – Application – Prayer
So I want to remind you, though you already know these things, that Jesus first rescued the nation of Israel from Egypt, but later he destroyed those who did not remain faithful. And I remind you of the angels who did not stay within the limits of authority God gave them but left the place where they belonged. God has kept them securely chained in prisons of darkness, waiting for the great day of judgment. And don’t forget Sodom and Gomorrah and their neighboring towns, which were filled with immorality and every kind of sexual perversion. Those cities were destroyed by fire and serve as a warning of the eternal fire of God’s judgment. (Jude 1:5-7 NLT)
The author reminds of those that God saved, but later destroyed those who “did not remain faithful”. And of the punishment for the angels that “did not stay within the limits of authority God gave them”. Plus how he destroyed Sodom, Gomorrah, and the neighboring towns because they were filled with immorality and sexual perversion. They were destroyed by fire to serve as a warning of the eternal fire that awaits those who are doomed to God’s judgment.
This passage begins with the word “so” to connect to the previous passage that talked about those who professed to be Christians but lived worldly lives. Basically, you are in danger if you do not remain faithful, or you do not stay within the limits of authority God gives you, or you become filled with immorality and sexual perversion. So the first one is to not remain faithful. We remain faithful, by staying true to his teachings, faithful to church, faithful in our giving, or marriages, etc. We stay within the limits of the authority that God gives us when we submit to the leadership of the church as outlined in Ephesians 4:11-16 and other places. And when we do not assume to be at a greater level than where he has us right now. Not everyone is an apostle, prophet, evangelist, or pastor/teacher. The last area should be the easiest to discern, but immorality with “little lies” and “not too drunk” etc. seem to grow bigger and bigger. Plus sexual perversion has become common place on even broadcast tv, private internet connections, and even some children shows. We already know these things, but we must continue to remind one another. No one is so big that they cannot fall, so we must repent and get up and back on track quickly.
Father, obviously this reminder is important for all of us. Sin can come in such subtle ways, but can lead easily to unfaithfulness in our commitments to one another and you or in taking authority that you did not give or to be persuaded to immorality by the world around us. Keep me reminded of how I must beware of the devils snares and protect my heart. And thanks for all the times you have delivered me in the past, both when I was aware of your work and when you protected me and I was not even aware.