‘Others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire.’ Jude 1:23 NKJ
Read Jude? It’s short and sweet—we reckon you should read it. Down at the bottom of the first and only chapter (Jude 1:22–23), Jude gives us a sliding scale of the way we should approach others, including those who doubt and those who need ‘snatching … from the fire.’ (Jude 1:23 NIV)
If it reminds you of the street-preacher types, you might be onto something. Whether or not that kind of stuff always seems appropriate, the kind of outreach that requires a quick, urging approach shouldn’t be cast away for its track record of Christian-cringe. Imagine ‘snatching’ someone from a literal fire. No second guessing or skirting round the edges. Quite a direct approach, then. What about when you see someone flirting with spiritual/mental danger? Our response shouldn’t be one of waiting around.
Now, we aren’t commissioning each of you to find your nearest street corner and don the ‘end is here’ sign. But, do pray for a chance to speak into people’s lives. Sometimes, Jesus speaks so clearly that there’s no need for opening gags, three-point sermons or even a coffee meet. And those are the moments that can really put the brakes on someone who’s putting themselves in danger right now and/or in eternity.
Don’t believe us? Check out Mark 5:1–35. Recognise those stories? Compare Jesus’ response to the demon-possessed man, and the sick woman. The woman needed more space and gentleness, whereas the guy wasn’t going to listen to anything except a real in-the-moment truth. Heaps of discernment is key. Only prayer will get us there.
Read Jude. Hey, we aren’t letting it go… even if you’ve read it already, pay a return visit.
SoulFood: 2 Jn, Gen 11:1–9, Phil 2:1–11
word4today an adaptation of The Word For Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright © 2016