Now to Him
“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, 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).- Jude 24–25
Having warned us about the destiny of false teachers, as well as our need to build ourselves up in the faith and pursue those led astray by error, Jude concludes his letter with one of the most beautiful doxologies found in the Bible. It is indeed right for Jude to end with praise and worship, for what else can we do but give glory to God once we have received His Word?
This doxology teaches us several things about our Lord. Verse 24 tells us God is able to keep us from stumbling. “Stumbling” here is a reference to eternal stumbling; thus, this verse assures us of the power of God to keep His people in His grace, thus securing us in our salvation. Those with true faith will not finally fall away.
This does not mean God’s people are incapable of committing gross sins. In fact, the examples of David (2 Sam. 11) and Peter (Luke 22:54–62) show us those with faith can fall into heinous sin. While God is certainly able to keep His people from such sins, there is no guarantee He will do so. The promise to keep His people from stumbling simply means all those whom God has chosen He will also bring to repentance (see Rom. 8:30). Though they may sin, they will always return to Him in faith before they die (John 6:35–40).
We must never use this promise of preservation to presume upon the kindness of God. When we disobey Him, the fault is our own; we cannot blame Him for not keeping us from sinning (James 1:13–15). We are called to keep ourselves from wickedness (Jude 20–23), and all those whom God preserves will grow more eager over the course of their lives to flee from even the appearance of evil. Still, while we must continue to fight against sin, it is God’s preserving power that keeps us eternally safe. As John Calvin says, this doxology reminds us that “our exhortations and labors can do nothing except through the power of God accompanying them.”
The remainder of the doxology offers “glory, majesty, dominion, and authority” to God through Jesus Christ, who as the God-man is our mediator now and forever. Let us then be quick always to offer praises to the Lord of glory through His only begotten Son.
God’s ability to keep His people from falling away is a source of profound comfort to believers. However, we must not think we can be passive with respect to our salvation. Though our efforts do not merit God’s favor, His preserving work is demonstrated as we pursue Christ and His Law. Consider today any persistent sin with which you are dealing. Seek accountability with a close friend so you may overcome it, and ask others to pray for you in this matter.
Passages for Further Study
1 Chron. 29:10–13
1 Tim. 1:17
2 Peter 3:18