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Asbury Bible Commentary – III. Literary Form
III. Literary Form

III. Literary Form

Jude uses six OT illustrations. They include the wilderness rebellion, the giants on earth (Ge 6:1-4), Sodom and Gomorrah, Cain, Balaam, and the rebellion of Korah. Jude did not follow the order in which these incidents appear in the Hebrew Bible. Second Peter, on the other hand, uses three of these references (2:4, 5-6, 15) and arranges them in the order they appear in the Hebrew Bible. Jude 9 seems based on the pseudepigraphal Assumption of Moses. Jude 14-15 explicitly quotes 1En 1:9. Second Peter omits the Enoch citation and discreetly disguises the allusion to the Assumption of Moses. It appears that 2 Peter has a tighter concept of what constitutes Scripture than does Jude. Jude is earlier than 2 Peter, contrary to John Wesley's view. Second Peter probably is dependent on Jude.

Jude is a general letter, not addressed to a specific church. That a specific controversy occasioned its writing, however, may be seen in the fact that it attacks a specific group of opponents. Jude's polemic alternates descriptions of the opponents (vv. 4, 8, 10, 12-13, 16, 19) with judgments against them based on authoritative traditions (vv. 5, 7, 9, 11, 14-15, 18).