HS Students 40 Days

WEEK 3 - DAY 5: COMPASSION CARES

Jude 20-23

 

20 But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life. 22 Be merciful to those who doubt; 23 save others by snatching them from the fire; to others show mercy, mixed with fear—hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh.

 

            These verses, especially verses 22-23 challenge us to express our compassion to the lost in different ways depending on the people we are dealing with. If some are wavering and just beginning to turn away from the truth due to doubts, we should have compassion on them and try to turn them back by working with them on what may be causing them to doubt their faith. For those who have already started down a path of sinful and evil living, we have to take a more forceful approach. By warning them of God’s coming righteous wrath. If we can, we have to put the fear of God in them. It may be the only thing that can bring them back.

If we find someone caught up in a struggle with fleshly temptation, we should be gentle and attempt to return them to God's way so that we or anyone else is not snared as well.

 

            In all of the situations above, people must sense our loving compassion for them as people we genuinely care about. People are not a “project we are working on” to see how good we are at out trade (gospel sharing), but rather each person has their own story because of experiences (good and bad) they have had in life, and we must relate to each person with care they can sense and feel. Generally speaking, people won’t care about what you have to share with them (the gospel), unless they know you really care about them as a person.  That is quite a challenge in this very busy life and self-pleasing culture we have, especially when we can go weeks without even knowing anything about the people on either side of us in our neighborhood! God help us!

 

Is there someone in your life (oikos) that fits into one of the categories Jude speaks of in verses 22-23? Ask God to give you wisdom on how to approach, care for, and relate to this person in a genuine way.