Jude 1:9-11, “Yet Michael the archangel, in contending with the devil, when he disputed about the body of Moses, dared not bring against him a reviling accusation, but said, “The Lord rebuke you!” But these speak evil of whatever they do not know; and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts, in these things they corrupt themselves. Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.”
The last lesson, in verse 8 we discussed in length a bit about the “dignitaries” the angelic beings specifically who had fallen, but which includes ALL spiritual beings. Jude continues with his discussion concerning one of the greatest of the Lord’s angels, His warrior angel, Michael. Though this incident is not recorded in any of the other canonical Scriptures, it is most likely possible that since Jude was a devout Jew, along with his brothers, including Jesus, that Jude is borrowing from an ancient manuscript called the Assumption of Moses. Others who view this Scripture theorize the story could have been passed down through tradition, none-the-less, we realize that it was STILL by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit that Jude wrote this and the point of the reference is that even the Heavenly Angels will not mock or speak evil of other angels.
This reference goes to show that even though Michael IS an archangel, and specifically the one that God Almighty will use to cast Satan down (Revelation 12:7-9), he still did not presume to speak reproachfully to the angelic being that rules the other demons! He deferred to God, Himself to do any rebuking! Such is the order even among the angels of God!
We don’t know all the particulars of this story Jude is relating, yet it is the point that even the angels in Heaven will not do what the apostates here are earth are willing to do, despite the power and authority granted to these entities for the time being! Such is the heart and mind of an apostate.
The sad truth of the matter is that without thinking and especially concerning any possible consequences, those that are apostate are brazen enough to speak mockingly and disrespectfully enough about things of which they are ignorant of and have no direct knowledge of.
This type of person, fallen to such a degree rejects any authority, natural or spiritual, even if they do realize an ordered society NEEDS some sort of rule and order. They do not attempt to hide their arrogance or pride when it comes to how they feel and see any authority. God Almighty, being the Supreme and Sovereign Authority makes no difference to their fallen minds.
Now here Jude goes on to tell just how deep their depravity and perversion is willing to be displayed. Though they seem to be totally ignorant about the spiritual, when it comes to the knowledge of natural instincts, they do not even hesitate in fulfilling the gratification of their sensual hunger. Jude writes that they become “like brute beasts,” like unreasoning animals, they are willing to pursue their perverse and sexual appetites to garner gratification and in the process they corrupt and destroy themselves!
Both my boys used to work in areas of law enforcement and when we DO get into discussions about the state of the world and sometimes the obvious results of a persons criminal activities, they often repeat a saying that they picked up, “when you play stupid games, you win stupid prizes.” It may seem harsh but so many that follow after and pursue their own self-gratification seem oblivious to the apparent consequences of their actions and it is today, becoming even more prevalent and noticeable.
Again, we need to remember that the Word of God, though written by the HAND of men, was written under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. These men, Jude included, wrote as the Holy Spirit led them to write! I again lay this foundation because of the harsh indictment that follows as we go into verse 11. “Woe to them!” Because these apostates are stubborn and rebellious and they remain unrepentant in their hearts, they are storing up for themselves the wrath and judgment of God that is promised to ALL who choose to reject God’s Authority AND His Grace and Mercy!
This is what the Apostle Paul wrote concerning this very thing in his letter to the Romans, “But in accordance with your hardness and your impenitent heart you are treasuring up for yourself wrath in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who “will render to each one according to his deeds . . .” – Romans 2:5-6. He goes on in detail in a few more verses but it is most definitely a stinging indictment of the judgment that is being earned for those who wish to only appease themselves.
Jude goes on to explain the depths of corruption that they have subjected themselves too. First, “they have gone in the way of Cain.” We all know that Cain murdered his brother Abel and was thus cursed, but what pushed him that way? Cain suffered from a case of vengeful jealousy. Cain’s sacrifice was rejected but his brother Abel’s was accepted by God. In essence, Cain rejected God’s way of sacrifice by the blood of, in this case a lamb, only to try and appease God by his own means. Cain literally rejected God’s remedy to cleanse man and in his own way tried to justify himself in his own way. Sounds so much like those in the world today. “I am a good person and I don’t do wrong, so a loving God will accept my good deeds,” though there is so much teaching AND evidence to the contrary!
In reality, reliance upon yourself and upon human efforts leads to a dismissal and hatred of God’s Grace and thus can and often does lead to persecution and yes even murder. “For this is the message that you heard from the beginning, that we should love one another, not as Cain who was of the wicked one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his works were evil and his brother’s righteous.” – 1 John 3:11-12, and “Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know that no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.” – 1 John 3:15.
Ultimately rejecting God’s way of doing what is necessary leads us away from a SELFLESS ability to love, to a very selfishness and self-centeredness that only pursues self-gratification.