Jude 23 – “Save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.”
Jude lets his readers know very quickly that they have been sent on a rescue mission. He says save (people) by snatching them out of the fire. It should be noted here what he doesn’t mean, he does not mean that it is our job to save people but that we have the glorious privilege of being God’s co-workers in the plan of salvation. We have a responsibility to be His ambassadors and to tell other people about Him. One scholar says, “Christian workers must have a sense of awe before the God who deigns to use us as his ambassadors.” We are as the Bible says, God’s co laborers and as we tell other people about Jesus and as we pray for the lost we are “snatching people from the fire”. When we get involved in the ministries of the church we are helping to snatch people from the fire. When we sacrificially give of our time or resources we are helping to snatch people from the fire.
Charles Spurgeon puts it this way as he thinks about the urgency of our calling: “if sinners be damned at leas let them leap to hell over our dead bodies. And if they perish, let them perish with our arms wrapped about their knees, imploring them to stay. If Hell must be filled, let it be filled in the teeth of our exertions, and let not one go unwarned and unprayed for.” The task is urgency, we must share Jesus with those who don’t know Him so that they might be snatched from the fire.
The message is urgent, but the message still must be spoken with love and as Jude puts it “with fear”. Someone once said because of that, “such rescue work can never be done in any spirit of sanctimoniousness or superiority. It must be done instead in fear, in recognition that ‘there, but for the grace of God, go I’.” We are then compelled to tell others about Jesus because He has saved us and in humility we pray that they too may be saved.
Make no mistake about it Jude’s words are short but they are direct, and they are filled up with urgency. People who are lost desperately need Jesus. We must act with a passion and a focus to tell others about Jesus. But we must do so in love, fear, and gratitude, praying in humility that God would touch hearts and that eternities would be changed for His glory!