The message of the book of Jude is that we are responsible for our own spiritual walk and growth in the Lord. 

Jude 20 – But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith,  praying in the Holy Ghost,

You’ve got to fight and you’ve got to remain in the fight. You don’t get a participation award. You have to remain in the faith. 

“Contend earnestly for the faith once for all delivered to the saints.” Here, Jude tells us what we are contending for. There is a lot of earnest contention in the world but usually not for the right things. “The faith once for all delivered to the saints” is something worth contending for.

 “The faith” doesn’t mean our own personal belief, faith in the sense of our trust in God or the way God is moving in our lives and on the earth. The phrase “the faith” means, “The essential truths of the Gospel that all true Christians hold in common.” 

Praying is not the only thing we are to do in the spirit: 

Galatians 5:16 – Walking in the Spirit  – I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.

Romans 8:13 – but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.

1 Corinthians 12:3 – Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit.

Philippians 3:3  – Worship in the Spirit 

2 Peter 1:3 (NLT) – “By His divine power, God has given us everything we need for living a godly life.” 

He equips us and give us the help we need through His Holy Spirit.  He empowers, teaches, guides and convicts us. God has been leading His people throughout the ages and He continues doing so in our lives. He doesn’t expect us to figure it out on our own, or “leave us hanging.” His help and guidance are available to us 24/7!

He wants us to make a difference in the world He created.

Jude 20-25 – But ye, beloved, building up yourselves on your most holy faith,  praying in the Holy Ghost,

21 Keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

22 And of some have compassion, making a difference:

23 And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.

24 Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy,

25 To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.

22 And of some have compassion, making a difference:

23 And others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.

Definition of Making a Difference

To make a difference is to do something of importance; something that helps people or makes the world a better place. 

To change a life or a situation that brings the Kingdom into somebody’s life. 

Designed to Make a Difference

But above and overarching all those things, He designed us to make a difference with a higher purpose.

 Ephesians 2:10 (NLT) – For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

“He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” 

He gave us salvation through His Son. As a testament to that reality, He has plans for us to live it out.

Our good works naturally spring forth because of our faith in Jesus’ sacrifice.

James explains it this way: 

James 2:17 (NIV) – “Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by actions, is dead.” 

This verse doesn’t mean we earn our salvation by “making a difference.” It tells us our acts of serving and living like Jesus are proof that we believe He died for our sins.

Our actions are the “spiritual fruit” that Jesus was speaking of in the Parable of the Fig Tree. The fig tree in Jesus’ parable had healthy roots and plenty of green leaves.  It should have produced figs!

Our faith should produce fruit when it is active and real.

Bible Verses about Making a Difference:

God’s Word has plenty of encouragement and direction toward making a difference for Him.

Be the Light

“You are the light of the world… let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in Heaven.”  Matthew 5:14a, 16 NIV.

Our lives should glow like bright lights when we are making a difference for Jesus in the world.  He wants us to be a beacon of truth that always points back to Him.♥

Love One Another

Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically.

Rejoice in our confident hope.

Be patient in trouble and keep on praying.

When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them.

Always be eager to practice hospitality.” Romans 12: 10-13 NLT.

I split this verse into separate sentences because it is so full of practical actions we can take.

“But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord.  Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have.  But do this with gentleness and respect.” – 1 Peter 3:15 (NIV)

Jesus never planned for us to keep our faith locked inside ourselves.

But the reason I love this verse so much is that it tells us we don’t have to knock people over the head with the Gospel or shout it obnoxiously.  (I hear so many people shouting these days…)

We are to be ready to defend our faith, our lifestyle, and our Christian perspective. The caveat is to do it with a gentle and respectful manner.


How to Live like Jesus in the Modern World

What do you think Jesus would be like if He came to earth today for a visit?  He might wear different clothes.  He might embrace technology (but in a Christ-like way!)  Jesus might use modern transportation to get from place to place.

But one thing wouldn’t change. He’d still be Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the King of the Universe. He’d carry Himself with the same attitude that He did long ago. Jesus would be in constant prayer with His Father. He’d be caring and kind, compassionate, and forgiving.

Hebrews 13:8 (NIV) – “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today and forever.”  

His social media feed would shine brightly with encouragement, love and His truth.  He’d travel to the slums and see to the needs of the sick and the broken.  Healing and teaching would still fill His days.  He’d be forgiving towards others and fighting for justice for the weak.  He’d condemn the religious hypocrites of the day.

If we are here to make a difference, then we should emulate His attributes. 

Serve as He did. Test popular lines of thinking against His truth. 

Be in contact with the Father through prayer on an hour by hour basis if needed. 

Trust in God’s plan and do His will.

The Power of One Person to Make a Difference

Ok, that all sounds great, right?

But can one person really make a difference in the world?

First of all, we have to remember that the power to make a difference comes from God, not ourselves. But His call is clear, and the best way to live it out is to read his Word and know His thoughts and desires.  It is there He convicts, encourages, and strengthens us to make a difference.

When we know His attributes and become more like Jesus, we see the needs of others more clearly.

We don’t have to travel the globe or fund a giant nonprofit in His name to make a difference.

What about the people you come in contact with every day?  What need do you see?

The Power of Exponential Growth

I know, this heading sounds way too much like math.  It is, but I want you to encourage you and show how God uses this math to make an enormous difference for Him!

Exponential growth is a pattern of growth that shows greater increases as time goes on. You probably already know a bit about it if you have ever carried a credit card balance, because that’s how those companies make their money.  Your original amount of credit or loan mushrooms into far more than the original cost.

Viruses and bacteria grow the same way (guess how I got thinking about this subject?) One infected person passes their germs on to one or two people, those people infect others, and then the infection grows wildly out of control.

Some equate making a difference to ripples on a pond that form when a rock is skipped across it’s surface.  But those ripples fade away.  Making a difference for Jesus has exponential growth because it is He who takes our simple acts of service and makes growth happen.

The Power of One to Make a Difference

Now consider your desire to make a difference for Jesus.  Don’t underestimate the power that you unleash when you serve others, shine His light, tell His story, show a simple kindness, and live out your life for Him!!

When you give Him the glory by your words and actions, that person passes it on to others, who then pass it on exponentially. It starts with one (you) but then grows and spreads like an epidemic (sorry, couldn’t resist).

I recently met one of the most kind and selfless people I’ve ever known. She modeled Jesus’ love with the provision of food (and like Jesus, gave more than we needed), radiated a gentle and quiet spirit, gave care and compassion to those who needed it, and came beside one left behind.

I wasn’t the only one who noticed her.  As I spoke to a relative about her, she also noticed the same attributes of Jesus that I saw.  After observing her in a few different situations and seeing these same qualities played out over and over, I realized the power of one person.

Her true servant nature stood out immensely.  It convicted and inspired me and others around her to want to act in the same manner.  She was “contagious” in a good way!

Called to Make a Difference

We weren’t created to be cookie-cutter likenesses of each other. Each one of us should radiate the Fruits of the Holy Spirit in our own unique ways.

Jesus is your biggest cheerleader!  He uniquely created and formed you to shine His light.  I believe He celebrates each time you make a difference in this world and holds you close each time you don’t. He’s not going to give up on convicting you to make a difference for Him.♥

Live Out Your Faith

He calls us to “serve one another in love” (Galatians 5:13) How will you show it?  Ask the Holy Spirit to give you the strength you need at the moment.  Lean on His strength and power, not your own.

In preparation, ask yourself what old habits do you need to get rid of?  What holds you back?

Are you quiet when you should speak up? Do you go along with the crowd?

Be in prayer- ask Him to show you how He wants you to make a difference as His hands and feet in the world.

Can one person make a difference?  The answer is a resounding “YES.”  May our eyes see the world as He does, and may it move our hearts to compassion and love as He leads.