Contend for the Faith
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 (Jude 3).
Without question, the gospel is under attack today. And I believe that most Americans, not to mention the rest of the world, have not really heard the gospel message. The fact is that when a lot of people are supposedly preaching the gospel, they are not really preaching it at all.
That is why Jude 3 says that we need to contend for the faith. We need to do this in the proper way. We don’t want to do it in a sloppy manner. We want to make sure that we know what the essential gospel is, because there are certain elements that must be in place for the gospel to be the gospel.
I often hear people oversimplify or overcomplicate the gospel. Either they load it down with a bunch of rules and regulations that have nothing to do with the essential gospel, or they strip it of its essential meaning by offering forgiveness without mentioning repentance or by telling people about a wonderful place called heaven without mentioning a very real place called hell. We need to find that balance and do it properly.
What would you think of a surgeon who just opened you up and started cutting away? It would be frightening for him or her to say, “I don’t know where to start.” We want to make sure that what we do, we do properly, because what we are up to in sharing the gospel has far greater, eternal ramifications.
So let’s contend for the faith. Let’s live it. Let’s defend it. And let’s proclaim the essential gospel.