Jul 12, 2012

Keeping as a Theme in Jude

In his discussion on theological themes in Jude, Daniel Keating notes two. The first theme is the call to contend for the faith. Concerning the second theme, Keating states, 

"A second motif is marked by the wordplay around the term 'keep.' The angels did not 'keep' the position appointed them, and so the Lord has 'kept' them in chains of punishment (1:6). Likewise, the gloom of darkness has been 'kept'  (NAB: 'reserved') for the false teachers forever (1:13). Jude assures the faithful that they are 'kept' safe by Jesus Christ (1:1), and yet paradoxically he calls them to 'keep' themselves in the love of God  (1:21). In the end however, , it is God who is able top 'keep' them from stumbling (1:24). The theme of 'keeping' reveals the mystery of divine-human interaction. It is God who fundamentally 'keeps' us, now and in eternity, but we too are called to 'keep' ourselves in the faith and the love of God, so that we do not lose our inheritance" (Daniel Keating, First and Second Peter, Catholic Commentary on Scared Scripture [Grand Rapids: Baker, 2011], 194).

Keating later argues the genitive "love of God" refers to God's love for us and not our love for God (p. 215). Some would debate that. In any case, this is a good reminder in a time in which false teaching is so prevalent.

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