The term contend suggests that you are about to enter a struggle with difficulty and or danger to overcome. This ordeal is like a battle for supremacy, similar to a hotly contested athletic competition. Jude doesn’t use hope for the best or try as if quoting a Little League motto. Rather, Jude is calling on all first century Christians to become active participants in defending the faith for Jesus Christ.
Beloved, my whole concern was to write to you in regard to our common salvation. [But] I found it necessary and was impelled to write you and urgently appeal to and exhort [you] to contend for the faith which was once for all [a]handed down to the saints [the faith which is that sum of Christian belief which was delivered [b]verbally to the holy people of God], Jude 1:3.
As human beings, priorities tend to shift depending upon the time of year. When a series of unexpected events throw a wrench into your schedule, you usually have to make sacrifices. You may even have to cancel several commitments that you wanted to keep. In the midst of trials and tribulations, you may lose your way for a while. Yet, as Jude states above, don’t forget about your spiritual future and salvation.
Fight the good fight of the faith; lay hold of the eternal life to which you were summoned and [for which] you confessed the good confession [of faith] before many witnesses, 1 Timothy 6:12.
As an adult over the age of fifty, I don’t have the energy I once possessed as a hyperactive teenager. Nonetheless, there is still something worth fighting for: the future of my children, potential grandchildren and a decaying spiritual heritage in America. This is where Christians must ascertain their spiritual gift, fine tune them and fan these gifts into flame, 2 Timothy 1:6-7. In your own weakness, may Christ be strong so that you may become an active participant in contending for the Christian faith in 2022.
by Jay Mankus