John Piper: Glory, Majesty, Dominion, and Authority Keep Us Safe for Everlasting Joy. Reflections on God’s Keeping Power through 32 Years of Ministry. Jude 1:24–25
The following are my notes from John Piper’s T4G sermon. The audio is online here.
1) The amazement that we are still Christians
2) An analysis of how that came about
24 Now to him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you blameless before the presence of his glory with great joy, 25 to the only God, our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion, and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. (Jude 24-25)
60 years as a Christian, 32 years of pastoral ministry, 44 years of marriage, in last year as a pastor
Why be amazed?
Journal from 1986 – Loathing a building program and all the things that come with it. No vision for the future. Feeling empty. Not seeing how he can find the inspiration to cast the vision. Discouraged. Blank. Opponents on every hand. Blind to the future of the church. A prayer for mercy.
Doxologies begin with the actions of God and then comment on His attributes to account for these actions.
Action: keeps you from stumbling, presents you blameless with great joy.
Attributes: eternal glory, majesty, dominion, authority
Do you have any idea how much it took to keep you alive to this moment? Do you know the degree that it took? No! We have no terms of measuring such things. How do you quantify the creation of a spirit and living being and then sustaining it? Is it pounds of pressure? How do you measure it? Be amazed! God creates spiritual life when we are dead!
Christ is the animating principle of our creation and spiritual life. We are not autonomous beings. Jude is clearly amazed at this. God does it all with a word!
The measurement of what it took is the difference between us and God. Infinite.
The measurement is glory, majesty, dominion, and authority! Stunning!
How that happens
Jude begins and ends with a strong assurance that God is our keeper. He is able does not just mean that He may do it. It means he is mighty to do it! God calls those He wants and keeps those He calls! God is faithful! There is an absolute certainty between being called and being kept (Romans 8)!
Jude wanted to celebrate salvation, but must warn against false teaching and teachers. They are professing Christians but don’t believe (v 5). They are not called and therefore not kept. They are using the grace of God to get what they want (sensuality).
What should we do?
For ourselves (vv 20-21)
For others (vv 22-23)
Keep yourselves in the love of God. Work hard! Work out your salvation, knowing that God is at work in you. Keep yourselves in the love of God, because God keeps you in the love of God. By means of faith, prayer, and waiting, we keep ourselves in the love of God. Trust God, pray, and continue to trust that He will answer!
The very things I d to keep myself in the love of God are the things God is doing by His Spirit to keep us! There is a way to do effort by faith. Why will you wake up a Christian tomorrow? Because He is powerful to keep you! God is fulfilling the new covenant (Jer 32:40-41) in the blood of Jesus. It comes through the blood of Jesus! We come through Jesus Christ.
Jesus has bought you with his blood. God is keeping you. Therefore, keep yourselves in the love of God.