Jude 1:8-11 – References to Other Jewish Stories


Jude 1:8-11


In the struggle to resist false, self-aggrandizing teachers, familiar stories about God’s authority provide encouragement.


The unnamed villains in the book of Jude are called “intruders” and “dreamers.” One of the main criticisms against them is that they reject the authority of both God and reliable teachers. The book then reviews several stories that illustrate the folly of such a position. First, summarizing a story that was likely once part of a Jewish writing called the Testament of Moses, Michael the archangel refused to listen to the devil’s attempt to slander Moses after his death. Next the book cites Cain, the Bible’s first murderer, who turned away from God (Genesis 4:1-16); then Balaam, who misled the Israelites (Numbers 31:1-20; 25:1-9); then Korah, a man who rebelled against Moses’ leadership (Numbers 16). All of these people refused to cooperate with God’s intentions and showed themselves deserving of judgment.

The short rogues’ gallery urges the book of Jude’s audience to learn from the past. False teachers and rebellious leaders have always been with us and always will be, but those who are faithful will respect God’s authority and align themselves with God’s purposes.