That we should contend for the faith is without doubt a solemn responsibility placed upon the Church of all ages. None who read the New Testament Epistle of Jude can escape such a truth. Not only that, but it is not enough to simply contend, but we are asked to ‘earnestly’ contend. How many of us do that I wonder? How we contend, in what way that is, the talents and gifts we have that enable us to do so will of course vary. But contend we must!
“…… it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.” Jude 3
Contend for the Faith – Our Common Salvation
The Faith, for which we are asked to contend is all that which pertains to our ‘common salvation’, and in Jude’s own introduction to the Epistle, he speaks of “giving all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation”, it is therefore essential that in our ‘contending’ we do not concentrate solely upon those controversial issues which cause damage and division in the church, but that our focus must always be on preaching the powerful soul-saving gospel of Jesus Christ. We need to tell men, women, boys and girls how to know that they are sinners and need a Saviour. We need to point them to Jesus Christ, the one who died and rose again that we, and they, might indeed have salvation, common indeed to all who will truly repent and believe.
Contend for The Faith – The Bible
However, in days such as ours, when the integrity of the Bible is increasingly under attack, in contending for the faith we must also point out error and false-teaching, and stand against it. Although we do not, or indeed should not, deliberately seek notoriety and unpopularity, we must be prepared for it. For in an increasingly secular age, those who make the Bible their sole rule of faith and practice are often misunderstood, and often spoken ill of, made out to be fools or fanatics.
All this then is a heavy burden we are asked to carry, but we do so, knowing that we bare the burden as Christians who seek to be truly biblical and who have a desire for the well-being of the true church, and purity of doctrine that we teach. We have a high view of Scripture, believing in its inerrancy and divine origin.
“All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.” 2 Timothy 3:16
Contend for the Faith – Doctrinal Indifference & Error
We live in days of tremendous doctrinal indifference, very much in a ‘does it really matter’ kind of age. Well, it does matter, and increasingly so. Sadly many churches are becoming more liberal in their teaching and practice. To be described as an evangelical church does not have the same strength of meaning that it once did.
Contend for the Faith – Perilous Times
The Apostle Paul, in writing to Timothy, in the early verses of 2 Timothy 3, could well be describing the perilous times in which we ourselves live. What then ought to be our response? Are we prepared to “earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints”?
This section will therefore will progressively address a range of matters, with articles on contemporary issues that are of importance and relevance in our day.