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Home » Daily Readings, New Testament Writers

Be Built Up in the Faith (Jude 17-25)

Submitted by on Saturday, 29 May 2010No Comment


  • Reading I: Jude 17, 20b-25
  • Resp. Psalm:  Ps. 63
  • Gospel Reading:  Mark 11:27-33


The letter of Jude is not one of the more read documents of the New Testament.  It is short and does not seem to contain much except a very virulent attack on false teachers.  From a historical point of view, however, it has some value in that it is witness to a time when a New Testament author can still quote an apocryphal book as Scriptures, and it is a milestone in the understanding of the word “faith” as referring to “the content of faith”.  This latter is what we call today “objective faith”, the set of revealed truths we believe in and hand on to posterity (see v. 3).

There are no chapters in Jude, only verses.  Below is a brief summary:

  • Address and Greeting – vv. 1-2
  • Concern in Writing – vv. 3-4
  • The Fate of Unbelievers – vv. 5-7
  • The False Teachers will have the Same Fate – vv. 8-16
  • What the Believer Must Do – vv. 17-23
  • Concluding Doxology – vv. 24-25

There you are, just twenty-five verses, more than half of which is dedicated to the false believers who have insinuated themselves into the community of faith.  They are “shepherds who feed only themselves” (v. 12)

These men are grumblers and faultfinders; they follow their own evil desires; they boast about themselves and flatter others for their own advantage.  (v. 16)

These are the men who divide you, who follow their own desires, animals (psychikoi)1, and do not have the Spirit (v. 19)

The selection for today’s liturgy is found under the title "What the Believer Must Do." Note that where the author says "build yourselves up in your holy faith" (v. 20), he refers to the faith "that was once and for all entrusted to the saints" (v. 3)

Mark 11:27-33
View in: NAB NIV KJV NJB Vulg Greek
27And they come again to Jerusalem. And when he was walking in the temple, there come to him the chief priests and the scribes and the ancients,
28And they say to him: By what authority dost thou these things? and who hath given thee this authority that thou shouldst do these things?
29And Jesus answering, said to them: I will also ask you one word, and answer you me, and I will tell you by what authority I do these things.
30The baptism of John, was it from heaven, or from men? Answer me.
31But they thought with themselves, saying: If we say, From heaven; he will say, Why then did you not believe him?
32If we say, From men, we fear the people. For all men counted John that he was a prophet indeed.
33And they answering, say to Jesus: We know not. And Jesus answering, saith to them: Neither do I tell you by what authority I do these things.

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  1. As distinguished from those having the Spirit, "pneumatikoi" []

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