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Bible Commentaries

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

Jude Overview

 

 


THE GENERAL EPISTLE OF JUDE.

The Epistle of St. Jude.

BY

THE REV. ALFRED PLUMMER, M.A., D.D

INTRODUCTION

TO

THE GENERAL EPISTLE OF JUDE.

I. The Author.—Whatever may be our opinion with regard to 2 Peter, sober criticism requires us to believe that this Epistle was written by the man whose name it bears. To suppose that Jude is an assumed name is gratuitous. It remains to determine who the Jude is who addresses us.

He tells us that he is a “servant of Jesus Christ” and “brother of James.” Had he been an Apostle he would probably have said so. (Comp. Romans 1:1; Titus 1:1; 2 Peter 1:1.) Had he been an Apostle he would not have claimed attention by calling himself “the brother of James,” when he possessed so very much stronger a claim. The fact that (Jude 1:17) the writer appeals to the words of Apostles proves nothing; an Apostle might do so. But at least such an appeal is more natural in one who is not an Apostle: there being no reason why he should keep his Apostleship in the background if he possessed it. Our Jude, then, is the Judas of Matthew 13:55, and the Juda of Mark 6:3; not the Judas of Luke 6:16 and Acts 1:13, where “brother of James” should more probably be “son of James.” The author of this Epistle is rightly described as the brother of James, “brother” being expressed in the Greek. The James indicated is James “the Just,” the brother of the Lord, and first Bishop of Jerusalem, who, though not an Apostle, was nevertheless a person of such dignity as quite to account for this writer thinking it worth while to mention his near relationship to him. The present question is mixed up with the vexed question as to the brethren of our Lord. The view here taken is that they were not the sons of Alphæus—i.e., cousins—but in some real sense brethren: either the children of Joseph and Mary, or of Joseph by a former wife, or by a levirate marriage, or by adoption. Which of these four alternatives is the right one will probably never be determined. Jerome’s theory, that they were our Lord’s cousins, children of Alphæus, is contradicted by John 7:5. (See Note there and on Matthew 12:46.) It owes its prevalence in the West mainly to Jerome’s influence. The identification of James the Lord’s brother with James the son of Alphæus, which it involves, has never prevailed in the Eastern Church. Our author, then, together with his better known brother, James, were in some sense our Lord’s “brethren,” and not Apostles. If it be asked, Would not Jude in this case have appealed to his relationship to Christ rather than to his relationship to James? we may securely answer “No.” As the author of the Adumbrationes centuries ago remarked, religious feeling would deter him, as it did his brother James in his Epistle, from mentioning this fact. The Ascension had altered all Christ’s human relationships, and His brethren would shrink from claiming kinship after the flesh with His glorified Body. This conjecture is supported by facts. Nowhere in primitive Christian literature is any authority claimed or attributed on the basis of nearness of kin to the Redeemer. He Himself had taught Christians that the lowliest among them might rise above the closest of such earthly ties (Luke 11:27-28); to be spiritually “the servant of Jesus Christ” was much more than being His actual brother.

Of this Jude very little is known. Unless he was an exception to the statement in John 7:5 (of which there is no intimation), he did not at first believe on Christ, but joined the Apostles after the convincing fact of the Resurrection (Acts 1:14). That, like his brothers (see Note on 1 Corinthians 9:5), he was married appears from Hegesippus, who tells us (Eus. H. E., III. xx.) that two grandsons of Jude were brought before Domitian as descendants of a royal house, and therefore dangerous persons; but on their proving their poverty, and explaining that Christ’s kingdom was not of this world, they were contemptuously dismissed. This story almost implies that the relationship to Christ was very close; for Hegesippus remarks, by way of explanation, that Domitian was afraid of Christ, just as Herod was. Statements of St. Jude’s preaching in various parts of the world rest upon late and untrustworthy evidence. That he was an Evangelist, is implied in his writing this Epistle; but nothing is known respecting his labours.

II. Authenticity.—The authenticity of the Epistle has been questioned by some from very early times, but without sufficient reason. The evidence against it is mainly this. External.—The Epistle is not contained in the Peschito or ancient Syriac version; Eusebius classes it among the disputed books (III. xxv. 3; II. xxiii. 25); Theodore of Mopsuestia seems to have rejected it; few references to it are found in early writers. Internal.—It cites apocryphal books; has a suspicious relationship to Romans and 2 Peter; is difficult in style. Against this we may urge that Ephrem Syrus seems to have recognised it; the Muratorian Fragment (circ. A.D. 170) contains it; the old Latin version contains it; Tertullian (De Cult. Fern. I. iii.) accepts it as genuine and Apostolic; Clement of Alexandria quotes it as Scripture (Strom. III. ii.; Paed. III. viii.); Origen, though he knew of doubts about it (Comm. on Matthew 22:23) fully accepted it (on Matthew 13:55; Matthew 18:10, et al.); Jerome (Scrip. Eccles. iv.) says that many rejected it because it quoted apocryphal books, but that it ought to be reckoned among the Scriptures: the Councils of Laodicea (circ. A.D 360) and of Hippo (A.D. 393) formally included it in the Canon. The doubts about it are very intelligible: it was not by an Apostle, and therefore seemed wanting in authority, and it quoted apocryphal works. Its brevity fully accounts for its not being often quoted. It is too insignificant to be a forgery; a forger would have said more, and would have selected some well-known name, and not that of one but little known, to give authority to his production. Respecting the apocryphal books quoted, see Notes on Jude 1:9; Jude 1:14 and the Excursus. The difficult style is natural enough in a Jew writing Greek well, but not with ease. As already stated in reference to 2 Peter, a theory that these two Epistles (2 Peter and Jude) are translations from Aramaic originals has recently been advocated (Did St. Peter write in Greek? by E. G. King, Cambridge, 1871). It would be presumption on the part of one who is ignorant of Hebrew to pronounce an opinion on the arguments used; but the number of them seems to be insufficient. Mere internal evidence of this kind ought to be very strong to counterbalance the entire absence of external evidence. Jerome would certainly give information on this point, if he possessed any, when he makes his own suggestion that St. Peter used different “interpreters” to write his two Epistles. (See Note on 2 Peter 2:17.)

III. The Place and Time.—As to the place we have no evidence, either external or internal. The Epistle contains some indications of time. (1) The fact that the destruction of Jerusalem and consequent ruin of the Jewish nation is not mentioned among the instances of divine vengeance (Jude 1:5-7) is a strong reason for believing that the Epistle was written before A.D. 70. (2) The fact that such libertines as are here described are allowed to remain members of the Christian community points to a time when Church discipline is in its very infancy. The evils are very similar to those which St. Paul has to condemn in the Church of Corinth (1 Corinthians 5:1-2; 1 Corinthians 6:8-18; 1 Corinthians 11:17-22). (3) It seems to be implied (Jude 1:17) that some of those addressed had heard Apostles. As to the bearing of the quotation from the Book of Enoch on this question, see Excursus.

IV. Object and Contents.—The object is plainly stated (Jude 1:3-4)—to urge his readers to contend earnestly for the faith which was being caricatured and denied by the libertinism and practical infidelity of certain members of the community. In what Church or Churches this evil prevailed we are not told; but it would be more likely to arise among converts from heathenism than from Judaism. The plan of the Epistle, short as it is, is evidently laid with considerable care; and the writer betrays a fondness for threefold divisions which is quite remarkable. It would scarcely be an exaggeration to say that wherever a group of three is possible he makes one. One or two of the triplets may be accidental, but the majority of them can hardly be so; and this fact may be worth remembering in discussing the question of priority between this Epistle and 2 Peter. There are ten (or possibly twelve) groups of three in this short Epistle of 25 verses: viz. (1 and 2) Jude 1:1; (3) Jude 1:2; (4) Jude 1:4; (5) Jude 1:5-7; (6) Jude 1:8; (7) Jude 1:11; (8) Jude 1:12-19; (9) Jude 1:19; (10) Jude 1:20-21; (11) Jude 1:22-23; (12) Jude 1:25. Of these (4) and (10) are perhaps doubtful; but there can be no question about the rest, although the last two are obscured in the English version, owing to our translators having followed a defective Greek text.

(1) INTRODUCTION.

(a) Three-fold address and three-fold greeting (Jude 1:1-2).

(b) Purpose of the Epistle (Jude 1:3).

(c) Occasion of the Epistle (Jude 1:4).

(2) WARNING AND DENUNCIATION.

(a) Three instances of God’s vengeance (Jude 1:5-7), and application of these three instances to the libertines who are now provoking God (Jude 1:8-10).

(b) Three examples of similar wickedness (Jude 1:11).

(c) Three-fold description corresponding to these three examples (Jude 1:12-15; Jude 1:16-18; Jude 1:19).

(3) EXHORTATION—

(a) To strengthen themselves in the faith by prayer, godliness, and hope (Jude 1:20-21).

(b) To treat these libertines with discrimination, making three classes (Jude 1:22-23).

(c) Concluding doxology (Jude 1:24-25).

V. The relation of Jude to 2 Peter.—The similarity both in substance and wording between a considerable portion of these two Epistles is so great that only two alternatives are possible; either one has borrowed from the other, or both have borrowed from a common source. The second alternative is rarely if ever advocated; it does not explain the facts very satisfactorily, and critics are agreed in rejecting it. But here agreement ends. On the further question, as to which writer is prior, there is very great diversity of opinion. One thing, therefore, is certain; that whichever writer has borrowed, he is no ordinary borrower. He knows how to assimilate foreign material so as to make it thoroughly his own. He remains original even while he appropriates the words and thoughts of another. He controls them; not they him. Were this not so, there would be little doubt about the matter. In any ordinary case of appropriation, if both the original and copy are forthcoming, critics do not doubt long as to which is the original. It is when the copy itself is a masterpiece, as in the case of Holbein’s Madonna, that criticism is baffled. Such would seem to be the case here. The present writer is free to confess his own uncertainty. A superficial acquaintance with the subject inclined him to believe in the priority of Jude: further study disposes him to think that the balance is decidedly in favour of the priority of 2 Peter, although the balance is considerably short of proof. The question cannot be kept distinct from that of the authenticity of St. Peter. Every argument in favour of the authenticity of 2 Peter is something in favour of its priority, and vice versâ; although many arguments bear more upon one point than the other. If, then, the genuineness of 2 Peter is accepted as probable, this will add additional weight to the considerations now to be urged in favour of the priority of 2 Peter; and they in turn will strengthen the arguments for its genuineness.

This question as to the relation between these two Epistles seems to be one in which the old-fashioned view is not so far wrong after all. And some value may fairly be allowed to the old-fashioned arguments for it: (1) that the account of evil-doers in 2 Peter is in the main a prophecy, whereas St. Jude speaks of them as present; the inference being that St. Jude recognised in what he saw the mischief which St. Peter had foretold; and added weight to his own denunciations by framing them in the very words of the Apostle; (2) that St. Jude’s warning, “remember the words which were spoken before by the Apostles . . . how that they told you there shall be mockers in the last time walking after their own ungodly lusts” (Jude 1:7; Jude 1:18), is an obvious reference to St. Peter’s prediction, “there shall come in the last days scoffers, walking after their own lusts” (2 Peter 3:3). Of course a forger, with St. Jude’s words before him, might frame his own words to fit them; but in that case we have still to account for St. Jude’s warning, “remember the words which were spoken before by the Apostles,” &c. They may refer to such passages as Acts 20:29; 2 Timothy 3:1; or (as some who insist on “how that they told you,” or “used to tell you,” prefer) to warnings given orally by the Apostles; still 2 Peter 3:3 is the most obvious reference.

No doubt it is antecedently more probable that a small Epistle should be republished with much additional matter, than that one-third of a longer Epistle should be republished with very little additional matter: but what has been said above about 2 Peter being a prophecy, of which St. Jude saw the fulfilment, is an answer to this. Besides which, we may urge that it is antecedently improbable that a forger should take so much from an Epistle that was not only known, but regarded with suspicion in some quarters, because of its quoting apocryphal books. That St. Jude is quoted by one or two writers who seem not to know or to reject 2 Peter (Tertullian, Clement of Alexandria, Origen) may be allowed some weight; but this could easily be accounted for, and in itself is not very convincing.

One argument used for the priority of Jude seems to the present writer to tell strongly for the priority of 2 Peter. It is this: that the evil-doers denounced by St. Jude are much more distinctly portrayed than those denounced in 2 Peter. We know from history that the errors indicated increased rapidly from the apostolic age onwards. The later writer, therefore, would have the clearer picture before his eyes. Would not the clearer description, then, be likely to be his? (See above on the False Teachers and Scoffers: Introduction to 2 Pet.) In connexion with this point it is worth considering whether the careful directions which St. Jude gives as to the way in which different classes of the ungodly men are to be treated does not point to a later stage of the evil (see Notes on Jude, Jude 1:22-23). Again, the rather fanciful arrangement into triplets, which prevails in St. Jude’s Epistle, looks more like a second writer working up old material, than a first writer working under no influence from a predecessor.

Of the numerous minute arguments drawn from the wording of parallel passages only one or two specimens can be given here: others are considered in the Notes. Jude 1:6 contains a telling piece of irony in the double use of “kept,” which is wanting in 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 1:10 contains a striking antithesis, very epigrammatically stated, which is wanting in 2 Peter 2:12; Jude 1:12-13 contains some fine similes, especially the one of “wandering stars,” which would have fitted the “false teachers” admirably; yet most of them are absent from 2 Peter. Would a writer who is quite willing to borrow anything that will serve his purpose (this is evident, whichever is the borrower) have wilfully rejected all these good things? If they are improvements added by St. Jude, all is natural enough. It is worth mentioning in conclusion, that the arguments urged for an Aramaic original tell decidedly in favour of the priority of 2 Peter.

While admitting, therefore, that the case is by no means proved, we may be content to retain the priority as well as the authenticity of 2 Peter, as at least the best working hypothesis.

EXCURSUS ON NOTES TO JUDE.

ON THE BOOK OF ENOCH.

THE precise place in history to which this intensely interesting relic belongs is a riddle of which the answer is as yet only very partially known. But the results of investigations during the nineteenth century have shown that the attention paid to the Book of Enoch in the second, third, and fourth centuries was fully justified. It is strange that such a book should have been allowed to pass out of sight. The canonical Book of Revelation inspired Christians, just as the Book of Daniel inspired Jews, with a love of revelations, visions, and prophecies, which was at times insatiable, and which has produced a mass of literature of which we could spare a great deal in exchange for something more solid. Men were so busy divining the future that they forgot to record the present and the past.

And yet a book so eminently in harmony with this taste was suffered to perish. This is all the more strange because judgment, hell, and heaven are among the main subjects of the book, and the end of the world was precisely the favourite subject of speculation among Christians from the fourth to the tenth century. Moreover, there was the passage in Jude, to say nothing of notices in the Fathers, to keep the book from being forgotten. Perhaps the reason was that just the two data by which men expected to determine the approach of the end of the world—the downfall of Rome and the coming of Antichrist—are not hinted at in the Book of Enoch. Be this as it may, the fact remains that from the fourth to the eighteenth century the book was entirely lost in Western Europe. Some fragments preserved in Greek in the Chronographia of Georgius Syncellus (circ. A.D. 800) show that the book was known in Eastern Christendom much later than in the West; but after that we lose all trace of it. Early in the seventeenth century it was rumoured that an Ethiopic version of it existed in Abyssinia. These rumours ended in disappointment. But in 1773 James Bruce brought back from Abyssinia three MSS. of the Ethiopic version. Silvestre de Sacy published a Latin transation of some of the early chapters in 1800; and in 1821 Archbishop Lawrence published an English translation of the whole, followed by the Ethiopic text in 1838. Since then the study of the book has been almost confined to Germany, where Hofmann, Gfrörer, Lützelberger, Lücke, Dillmann, Ewald, Köstlin, Hilgenfeld, Weisse, Volkmar, and Philippi, have all contributed to the subject; Dillmann far the most. The results are anything but harmonious; but something has been ascertained on which reliance can be placed.

The Ethiopic is a translation from the Greek, and the Greek (of which only the portion preserved by Georgius Syncellus is known) is probably a translation from the Aramaic. A Hebrew Book of Enoch was in existence as late as the thirteenth century, but we have no certainty that it was identical with the existing work. A more secure ground for believing in an Aramaic original is the fact that many of the proper names come from Aramaic roots. The Ethiopic version is both redundant and defective: redundant in containing repetitions which can scarcely be intentional; defective inasmuch as not even all that Georgius Syncellus has preserved is contained in it. The repetitions may possibly be the result of unintelligent copying, different recensions being clumsily strung together.

All are agreed that the book is not all by one hand. In the main it probably is so; but the author seems to have incorporated portions of other works; and it is suspected that the volume, as thus formed, has since been interpolated. To distinguish the earlier fragments and the later additions from the main body of the work, and to assign dates to each, is the great problem that still remains to be worked out. Very wide differences of opinion exist on the subject, but there is considerable agreement in assigning the main body of the book to B.C. 150-110. Lücke at first believed that the book was composed after the Christian era; but in the second edition of his Einleitung in die Offenbarung Johannis (Bonn, 1852) he abandoned this view, and placed the first and last parts in the Maccabæan period, and assigned the central part—i.e., the parables—to about B.C. 40. Hofmann, Weisse, and Philippi have since taken up the theory of a post-Christian origin, but it has not met with much favour. Volkmar seems to stand alone in maintaining that the book was the work of disciples of the great Rabbi Akiba, and was written to incite people to join the standard of the impostor, Bar-Cochba, in his revolt against Hadrian, A.D. 132. Information on the subject for English readers is best derived from Lawrence’s translation and preliminary dissertation, the article by Westcott in the Dictionary of the Bible, and that by Lipsius in the Dictionary of Christian Biography, from which sources much of the above is taken. See also Westcott’s Introduction to the Gospels, p. 93.

The essentially Jewish character of the whole book is manifest, although it may contain Christian interpolations. There is no doctrine of the Trinity, and nothing distinctly Christian. Of the Incarnation, the name Jesus, the life on earth, the Crucifixion, the Resurrection, the Ascension, of Baptism, and the Eucharist, there is not a trace. The Messiah is the Son of Man (passim), the Son of woman (Enoch ), the Elect (passim), whom the Lord of spirits seats on the throne of His glory to judge “in the word of the name of the Lord of spirits” (Enoch 60:10, 11; 68:39); but he is not the Word, he is not God.

These facts suffice to show that the book as a whole is Jewish and not Christian. On the other hand, the absence of antagonism to Christianity seems to show that the book was not written after the Christian era. Volkmar’s theory, that it was written in the interests of the false Messiah, Bar-Cochba, is rendered at once improbable by the fact that constant reference to the Book of Enoch is made in the Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs. This work was known to Origen, and perhaps to Tertullian, and therefore cannot be later than A.D. 150-200. But it was probably written before A.D. 135, i.e., before that obliteration of the very walls and name of Jerusalem which was the immediate result of Bar-Cochba’s revolt. The author, a Jewish Christian, attacks the idea that Jewish ceremonial is still binding; and is perpetually reminding the Jews that the Messiah is not only a King but a Priest, and a Priest to whom the Aaronic priesthood must resign. This idea does not at all suit the half century following Hadrian’s destruction of Jerusalem; for that event put an end to the danger of Jewish ceremonial overgrowing Christianity. Whereas before that event the danger of a relapse into Judaism was, for the church in Palestine, a very real one. The Testaments of the Twelve Patriarchs may be placed A.D. 100-135; and consequently the Book of Enoch must be placed earlier still. (Comp. Dorner’s Person of Christ, 1, pp. 152, 417, 420.)

It is well worth while to read the whole of Lawrence’s translation. Those who do so cannot fail to be often struck with the dignity and beauty even of this translation of a translation. Not unfrequently they will come upon something which reminds them of 2 Peter or Jude. The resemblance is often of the faintest—a couple of words in altogether different context, or a similar thought very differently expressed. It would be strange if all these resemblances were purely accidental; and an opportunity of forming an opinion on this question is given in the following pages, where specimens of these resemblances are tabulated.

The impression which this fact conveys is that the writers of these Epistles, or at least one of them, was well acquainted with the Book of Enoch, and that it suggested sometimes a thought, sometimes a phrase to him. It is possible, however, that all three writers may have derived material from a common source. These questions can scarcely be settled finally until a Greek copy of the book comes to light, an event by no means to be despaired of in an age in which so many literary treasures have been recovered.

The book is evidently the work of a man of the most earnest convictions: one who believes in God and fears Him, and is appalled at the practical infidelity and utter godlessness which he finds around him. There are two things on which he is never tired of insisting: (1) that God’s rule extends everywhere, over men and angels no less than over winds and stars; (2) that this rule is a moral one, for He bounteously rewards righteousness and fearfully punishes sin. Nothing, therefore, could well be more in harmony with the spirit and purpose of St. Jude; and it ought not to surprise us that he makes use of such a work. Whether or no he was aware of the apocryphal nature of the book, we have no means of determining. Neither alternative need startle us—that he should have been mistaken on such a point, or should knowingly have quoted an uncanonical book. St. Paul was not afraid to quote heathen poets.

It may reassure us in any case to remember that, in spite of the quotation in St. Jude, the mind of Christ’s Church has never wavered as to the true nature of the Book of Enoch. It is one of the many eccentricities of Tertullian that he upholds its authority; but he is alone in doing so. His argument is so curious as to be worth summarising:—“I am quite aware that some reject the book, and that it is not in the Jewish canon. I suppose people think that it could never have survived the deluge. But might not Noah have heard and remembered it all? or have been inspired to repeat it, just as Ezra is believed to have restored the Jewish literature lost in the destruction of Jerusalem? Nothing must be rejected which really concerns us; and we read that every Scripture suitable for edification is divinely inspired. The Jews reject it, as they reject other things, because it tells of Christ” (De Cultu Fem., I. iii.).

It is not quite certain whether Justin Martyr knew it or not. In Apol. II., v., he gives in few words an account of the fall of the angels, and the consequences of it, very similar to that in the Book of Enoch, 6-16. Justin and the author of the book may have got this from a common source; but, in any case, Justin’s accepting the account is no proof that he accepted the book as of any authority. Origen and Augustine distinctly mark it as apocryphal, and it is included in no list of the Scriptures, whether Jewish or Christian.

The question still remains—does St. Jude quote this book? More than one critic answers in the negative, maintaining that he merely quotes a traditional saying of Enoch, which the author of the Book of Enoch inserted. Of course this is possible; but, as the book was in existence when St. Jude wrote, was probably well known, and contains the passage quoted, the more reasonable view is that St. Jude quotes from the book.

JUDE.

TABULATED SPECIMENS OF PARALLELS BETWEEN THE BOOK OF ENOCH AND THE SECOND EPISTLE OF ST. PETER AND THE EPISTLE OF ST. JUDE.

ENOCH.

2 PETER.

JUDE.

2. Behold, He comes with ten thousands of His saints, to execute judgment upon them, and destroy the wicked and reprove all the carnal, for every thing which the sinful and ungodly have done and committed against Him.

Jude 1:14-15. Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of His saints, to execute judgment upon all, and to convince all that are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have ungodly committed and of all their hard speeches which ungodly sinners have spoken against Him.

. The splendour of the Godhead shall illuminate them.

2 Peter 1:17. The excellent glory.

. The earth is scorched up with fervid heat.

2 Peter 3:10. The elements shall be dissolved with fervent heat, the earth also.

, 5. You calumniate [His] greatness; and malignant are the words in your polluted mouths against His majesty. Ye withered in heart, no peace shall be unto you.

2 Peter 2:10. They are not afraid to speak evil of dignities.

Jude 1:8. Despise dominion, and speak evil of dignities.

Jude 1:10. But these speak evil of those things which they know not.

Jude 1:12. Without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots.

, 2. It happened, after the sons of men had multiplied in those days, that daughters were born to them, elegant and beautiful. And when the angels, the sons of heaven, beheld them, they became enamoured of them, saying to each other; Come, let us select for ourselves wives from the progeny of men, and let us beget children.

2 Peter 2:4. For if God spared not the angels that sinned.

Jude 1:6. And the angels which kept not their first estate, but left then own habitation.

. Then shall the children of the earth be righteous. (Comp. 1:5 : The earth shall rejoice; the righteous shall inhabit it, and the elect possess it.)

2 Peter 3:13. We look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.

. Clouds and a mist invited me; agitated stars . . . pressed me forwards.

2 Peter 2:17. Mists that are driven with the storm-wind.

Jude 1:12. Clouds they are without water.

Jude 1:13. Wandering stars.

. Therefore I made not wives for you [angels], because, being spiritual, your dwelling is in heaven.

Jude 1:6. The angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation.

. Therefore was He offended with them [the angels], and bound them, until the period of the consummation of their crimes in the secret year. (Comp. 16:2, 3 : I beheld . . . a desolate spot, prepared, and terrific. There too I beheld seven stars of heaven [angels] bound in it together. . . . These are those of the stars which have transgressed the commandment of the most high God; and are here bound, until the infinite number of the days of their crimes be completed. Comp. 87:2, 3.)

2 Peter 2:4. If God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment.

Jude 1:6. He hath reserved in everlasting chains under darkness unto the judgment of the great day.

. The merciful, the patient, the holy Michael.

Jude 1:9. Michael . . . durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.

. The sinners who denied the Lord of glory.

2 Peter 2:1. Even denying the Lord that bought them.

Jude 1:4. Denying the only Lord, and our Lord Jesus Christ.

. Sinners who deny the name of the Lord of spirits. (Comp. 47:11; 66:12.)

, 5. I will change the face of heaven. . . . I will also change the face of the earth; will bless it; and cause those whom I have elected to dwell upon it.

2 Peter 3:13. We look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.

. All the waters, which are in the heavens and above them, shall be mixed together. The water which is above heaven shall be the agent; and the water which is under the earth shall be the recipient; and all shall be destroyed who dwell upon earth.

2 Peter 3:5-6. By the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth consisting out of water and through water: whereby the world that then was, being overflowed with water, perished.

. Hitherto has existed the day of mercy; and He has been merciful and long-suffering towards all who dwell on the earth.

2 Peter 3:9. The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

. The valley of the angels, who had been guilty of seduction, burned underneath its soil. 15. The waters will be changed, and become a fire which shall blaze for ever.

Jude 1:7. Sodom and Gomorrha . . . giving themselves over to fornication, and going after strange flesh, are set forth for an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire.

. Those who seduced them shall be bound with chains for ever.

2 Peter 2:4. God spared not the angels that sinned, but . . . delivered them into chains of darkness.

Jude 1:6. The angels which kept not their first estate . . . He hath reserved in everlasting chains

. I saw in a vision heaven purifying and snatched away. . . . I saw likewise the earth absorbed by a great abyss, and mountains suspended over mountains. Hills were sinking upon hills, lofty trees were gliding off from their trunks and were . . . sinking into the abyss.

2 Peter 3:10. The heavens shall pass away with a rushing noise, and the elements shall be dissolved with fervent heat, the earth also; and shall the works thereof be found?

, 18. The former heaven shall depart and pass away; a new heaven shall appear. . . . Afterwards likewise shall there be many weeks, which shall externally exist in goodness and righteousness. Neither shall sin be named there for ever.

2 Peter 3:10. The heavens shall pass away. 13. We look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness.

. To them there shall be no peace; but they shall surely die suddenly.

2 Peter 2:1. Shall bring upon themselves swift destruction.

. Woe to them who act impiously, who laud and honour the word of falsehood.

Jude 1:11. Woe unto them! for they have gone in the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam for reward.

. You have been satiated with meat and drink, with human plunder and rapine, with sin, with the acquisition of wealth, and with the sight of good days.

2 Peter 2:13. As they that count it pleasure to riot in the day-time. Spots they are and blemishes, sporting themselves with their own deceiving while they feast with you.

Jude 1:12. These are spots in your feasts of charity, when they least with you, feeding themselves without fear. 16. Having men’s persons in admiration because of advantage.

, 14. Behold they committed crimes; laid aside their class, and intermingled with women. With them also they transgressed; married with them, and begot children. A great destruction therefore shall come upon the earth; a deluge, a great destruction, shall take place in one year.

2 Peter 2:4-5. God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; and spared not the old world . . . bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly.

Jude 1:6. The angels which kept not their first estate, but left their own habitation, He hath reserved in everlasting chains.

 


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Bibliography Information
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Jude:4 Overview". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/jude-0.html. 1905.

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