Have you ever known fellow believers who got caught up in sinful lifestyles that had the power to destroy their lives? How did it affect you when you saw them making those harmful decisions? I don’t know about you, but I find it heartbreaking when I see someone I love doing things that are self-destructive and harmful to his or her walk with God. Doesn’t it affect you this same way?
Jude tells us what our attitude should be toward fellow believers who get caught up in the world again. We must realize that these fellow believers are in grave danger of reaping the consequences of sin and that those consequences are very serious. Therefore, we must act decisively when we see this happen to someone we love.
In Jude 1:23, Jude tells us, “And others save with fear....” That word “save” is taken from the Greek word sodzo. In this particular verse, it is used in the present imperative tense, which means the Greek calls for immediate, fast, and continuous action. This is not a mild suggestion that Jude is making to his readers. This is a strong command to take action and to do it as fast as possible.
The word “fear” is from the Greek word phobos. In this particular case, it evokes afear or a strong dose of respect for something that is life-threatening, dangerous, or alarming. Jude uses this word “fear” to let us know that believers who continue in sin place themselves in a very precarious, dangerous, and alarming situation. This is no game. Sin in the life of a believer is extremely serious. Therefore, Jude commands us to act immediately when we see a fellow brother or sister compromising his or her walk with the Lord.
With the full meaning of these Greek words, Jude 1:23 could be translated:
“Because of the alarmingly dangerous state that some believers are in, I urge you to take immediate and fast-acting measures to see them delivered and rescued. And if they don’t quickly respond, don’t stop! You need to keep up your sense of urgency until you are convinced that they are rescued from this precarious situation.…”
There is no doubt about it! This verse places a heavy responsibility on us to do whatever we can to bring this deceived person back to a place of safety. Jude speaks in a commanding tone of voice to let us know that we don’t have a choice in this matter. We must act fast, act deliberately, and be continuous and unending in our efforts until we are certain that these straying brothers and sisters are back in safe territory again.
So if you know a friend or loved one who is allowing serious sin to continue in his life, pray for him. Then go to him and express your concerns in love. Love that person enough to speak the truth to him. Act fast on his behalf, and do what you can to save him. Otherwise, he may eventually make mistakes that will bring disaster and destruction upon his life.
That’s why Jude commands us to take action right now. The possible consequences are too serious to ignore. We must do everything within our power to save and rescue believers caught in the snare of sin as quickly as possible.
MY PRAYER FOR TODAY
Lord, help me know exactly what to say and what to do when I see fellow brothers or sisters who are headed in a wrong spiritual direction. Give me Your heart, Your wisdom, and Your boldness to speak the words I need to speak. Help me love them enough to speak the truth to them. I realize the consequences of sin are great, so please help me do everything within my ability to see them rescued as soon as possible.
I pray this in Jesus’ name!
MY CONFESSION FOR TODAY
I confess that I am moved to action when I see fellow believers caught in sin. I pray and believe for their deliverance. I go to them in love to express my concerns to them. I love them enough to speak the truth. I act fast on their behalf and do what I can to save them.
I declare this by faith in Jesus’ name!
QUESTIONS FOR YOU TO ANSWER
1. Are there people in your life who are headed in a wrong spiritual direction? Who are those people? Have you spent time in prayer asking God for a real “turnaround” in their lives?
2. Have you taken the time to go to them so you can express your concerns? Or have you asked the Lord to give you ideas of how you can approach them in a non-threatening way so they will listen to you instead of tuning you out?
3. If you were in their situation, wouldn’t you want someone to care enough that they would come to you to express their concerns? If this is what you would hope others would do for you, don’t you think it is the least that you can do for someone else?