Jude 1: 23
“Be merciful to those who doubt, snatch others from the fire, and save them. To others show mercy mixed with fear”
This is a sobering and challengingly verse. Over the years of being a Christian I have seen so many fellow believer’s stumble into sin and get taken out and so many who are not even walking with the Lord anymore. They have got involved in sinful lifestyles that that has the power to destroy their lives. Its heart breaking to watch as they are taken out and their lives end up a mess.
The verse tells us the attitude we should have towards these fellow believer’s. One translation says ‘and others to save with fear.
In Rick Renner’s book ‘Sparkling gems from the Greek’ he states the word save here means an immediate, fast and continuous action. This is not a mild suggestion Jude is advocating but a strong command to action and to do it as fast as possible. The word fear means a strong dose of respect for something that is life threatening, dangerous or alarming. Jude is saying believers who continue in sin are placing themselves in a very precarious, dangerous and alarming situation. This is no game but a life and death situation and so Jude commands us to act immediately when we see a fellow brother or sister compromising his or her walk with the Lord. We are to act with mercy and fear to bring them back. Not just ignore them or the sin. Love that person enough to speak the truth to them in love. Not easy. Our culture tends to avoid any conflict at any cost. A challenge indeed but isn’t that what real love is.