Jude: who introduced you to Jesus?

Romans 1 16

Be merciful to those who doubt;  save others by snatching them from the fire; to others show mercy, mixed with fear—hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh. (Jude 1:22)

As Christians we know Jesus. We have a relationship with Him. Through His death on the cross we are forgiven, saved, and promised eternal life. It’s a given. And s Christians we are called to share this good news with others. Do you remember who introduced you to Jesus?

For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believe (Romans 1:16)

If you’ve ever wondered how to approach those who don’t yet share the same relationship with Jesus, Jude tells us to “be merciful to those who doubt“.  Merciful, kind, gracious, compassionate.

Jude goes on to instruct us to evaluate the needs of those we come across and save them either by “snatching them from the fire” or through a combination of “mercy and fear“.

Here is what Joe Stowell writes about being snatched from the fire:

“…Which reminds me of the lesson that D. L. Moody, the Billy Graham of the 19th century, learned.

After proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ to a crowded hall in Chicago, the evangelist closed his message by encouraging the attendees to go home, consider the claims of the gospel, and return the next week to settle the matter in their lives. But that night Chicago heard the ringing of fire alarms and the clatter of horse-drawn water wagons being hurried through the streets. Mrs. O’Leary’s cow had kicked the lantern, and the Great Chicago Fire swept the city—hundreds of lives were lost. Because of that, D. L. Moody committed himself to never again forget to urge people to receive Christ immediately—before it is too late.

As Moody learned that night, we can’t afford to wait to share the good news of the gospel in light of the urgent needs of those who are living without a Savior and heading toward a godless eternity in hell.  Jude had this sense of urgency when he wrote to the early believers: “I felt I had to write and urge you to contend for the faith that was once for all entrusted to the saints” (Jude 1:3), instructing them to “Be merciful to those who doubt; snatch others from the fire and save them” (Jude 1:22-23).

Having been snatched from the fire ourselves, how fitting that we too should seek to rescue others.  This is the message that has been “entrusted” to us. Let’s pray that the Lord will put a fire in our belly to start sharing His message with urgency! And in the face of a secular, doubting world, remember that we need not be ashamed of the gospel since it is the “power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes” (Romans 1:16). No amount of doubting can thwart the power of God to save those to whom we carry the gospel!”

Matthew Henry explains what Jude means by “hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh“: “keeping yourselves at the utmost distance from what is or appears evil, and designing and endeavoring that others may do so too. Avoid all that leads to sin or that looks like sin.”

1 Thessalonians 5:22 says “reject every kind of evil“. Reject it. Do not negotiate with it, reject it. Do this by keeping our focus on God and staying on the path that He sets before us, and waiting on Him.

“Come to me continually- I am meant to be the center of your consciousness, the Anchor of your soul. Your mind will wander from Me, but the question is how far you allow it to wander. You wander only a short distance before feeling that inner-tug telling you to return to your center in me.” Sarah Young, Jesus Calling

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