May 2, 2019
Jude 5a (NLT)
So I want to remind you, though you already know these things, that Jesus first rescued the nation of Israel from Egypt…
Hold on a second. We need to pause where we’re going with this letter to make sure we don’t miss something big. In a letter so short it’s skimmed past, one little line can be easy to skim over: Jesus first rescued the nation of Israel from Egypt.
Jude is saying Jesus was there at the Exodus, in the Old Testament.
That’s a big deal.
Now some translations say “Lord” but the earliest manuscripts said “Jesus.” And Jude says he’s reminding his friends of something they already know, and it starts with Jesus in the Old Testament. He’s not saying anything new here. Consider John 1:1-4: “In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He existed in the beginning with God. God created everything through him, and nothing was created except through him. The Word gave life to everything that was created…”
Or Colossians 1:15-17: Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation, for through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see— such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him. He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together.
Or Hebrews 1:2: “…through the Son [God] made the universe and everything in it.”
God through Jesus Christ created everything. Every. Thing.
God through Jesus Christ holds all of creation together. All. Creation.
That means that everyone – even the false teachers – were created by Jesus, for Jesus, and are sustained by Jesus even if they’re not aware of it. (pro tip: that’s a great place to pray for unbelievers because it is the very heart of prevenient grace).
That’s a big deal.
“You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life,” Jesus said to the Old Testament experts in John 5:39, “But the Scriptures point to me!” As my friend Matt LeRoy says, Jesus is not only the protagonist of the New Testament, he’s the author of the Old Testament.
Every major covenant in the Old Testament – the ones with Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and David – was pointing to Jesus.
If Jesus was there to walk God’s people out of Egypt, was it also Jesus who walked with Adam and Eve in the garden? Who walked up to Jacob and wrestled him? Who walked in to the tent and spoke with Moses face to face like a friend? Who walked in to the furnace of fire with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego? Who walked in to a pit and shut the mouths of a bunch of lions so they wouldn’t eat Daniel?
Were you ever aware of this? It’s a big deal.
Jude says he’s reminding his friends of something they already know, and sometimes we need to be reminded of something we already know, too: That the Jesus who spoke creation into existence and walked out of slavery through the desert and stood in the fire and shut the mouth of lions and wrestled with Jacob is here with us now.
God through Jesus Christ is here with you. Right here, right now. Even as you read this. Jesus is walking through every fire, desert, and wrestling of faith you walk through… even if you’re not aware of it.
That’s a big deal.
Jesus, give me more and more mercy, peace, and love. Help me to see where you are walking with me, even when I haven’t been aware of it. I need you to be a big deal in my life. Amen.
Where have you seen Jesus walking with you in the past that you weren’t aware of, and where do you see him walking with you now?
For the awakening,