8 "Likewise also these dreamers defile the flesh, reject authority, and speak evil of dignitaries. 9 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!” 10 But these speak evil of whatever they do not know; and whatever they know naturally, like brute beasts, in these things they corrupt themselves. 11 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."
Dreamers: those who experience things in their imagination that are not happening in reality.
In the context of what Jude is addressing these people imagine that they can behave as they wish without consequence. This is not reality. They reject authority and imagine their is no law or authority higher than their own opinions. This is not reality. They speak evil of dignitaries again in an attempt to raise themselves up by tearing them down. In the real world this changes nothing. I can bash cops or the government or anyone I want but they are still in their position when I'm done.
Jude goes on to say they speak evil of whatever they do not know and like animals continue to live by instinct rather than principal. Speaking evil is easy. Criticism is so easy. It's even easier when we don't know what we're talking about. We can criticize how something was built not realizing that given the circumstances under which it was made (lack of time or proper tools or proper materials etc...) it is actually an amazing accomplishment. We can criticize a person not realizing that if we had been through the experiences they have been through we would see things differently too. We can criticize the government not realizing they may be doing what is best given the parameters they have to work in. It's really easy to be a fool, I've been there more than once.
God is our Creator. He designed our physical bodies. He designed our emotions and intellect and reasoning powers. He knows how they work and what they need to work optimally. Wouldn't it be crazy for the creature to argue with or mock or ignore His instructions? In the end all we would accomplish is our own destruction.
When I was a kid my brother and I got a small dirt bike. It was fun while it lasted but then we put the wrong oil in it and the engine was ruined. Correct oil = good results. Wrong oil = disastrous results.
Somewhere along the way we became delusional and adopted the idea that God just made up a bunch of random rules to exercise His authority over us and control us. Somehow we missed the part where He said "Keep My laws that it may go well with you."
We can ignore His instruction. As a society we can vote in new and different laws. It won't change reality. We are dreamers acting like brute beasts when we imagine we can follow our corrupted desires wherever they lead and everything will be ok.
Let's try something radical. Let's just take Him at His word even when in our ignorance we think we know better.
Tomorrow we'll take a closer look at the stories Jude alluded to in our passage today to illustrate his point.