Reading through Jude, the first thing that strikes me is the humility with which he wrote. He didn’t introduce himself as some high and mighty authority that the readers of his letter were supposed to listen to – but as a “servant of Jesus and a brother of James”.
Often, we can tend to think in terms of credentials and qualifications. If we’re looking for a job, we’ll polish up our resume – listing out the experiences we’ve had that we think qualify us for the job. If we have a message we want the church to heed, we may feel tempted to preface it with a list of our accomplishments or successes in ministry. In short, we may be tempted to puff up ourselves before we deliver the message.
The problem with that is, it ignores the fact that we’re only messengers – or at least that’s what we should be. If the message is only mine, it’s going to come up short of what the Body really needs. One of our seniors will be preaching in a couple weeks and I want him to be aware of that fact. He needs (and I need) to simply say what God wants him to say. His job is not to craft the greatest sermon ever heard (by the half of the congregation that will still be in town). It’s to search the heart and mind of God for His message to His people – and deliver it as His servant.
Jesus had a brother named Jude. And another named James. It’s not too much of a stretch to say that it was probably this same Jude, Jesus’ own brother, who wrote this letter. We know His brothers didn’t believe in Him until after His death and resurrection, but that they did come to belief. But Jude doesn’t write on the authority that “Jesus is my brother, so you better listen up.” He had something on his mind that he wanted to share with the people. And he did it as a servant.
Whatever ministry you and I may be sent into, may we go there as humble servants.