Pastor Wrinkles: Hey Jude Pt. 26

“And others save with fear, pulling [them] out of the fire; hating even the garment spotted by the flesh.” Jude 1:23

I made the comment yesterday that Jesus calls us to more than a passive compassion. HE calls us to step into lives and save them; But how do you rescue someone who is out to destroy themselves, you and everything you hold dear? The long story short is you can’t. Even when a person is not out for a pound of flesh (as secret-slipper-inners always are) you cannot save them. Only Jesus saves….And yet he calls us into the fray many times to offer the saving grace of the cross. He uses us…flows through us to manifest His grace to others.

A number of years ago I had the opportunity to minister to a secret-slipper-inner. In his sin he had risen up to cause me harm and honestly my first reaction was to cause harm right back. I remember agonizing over the issue one morning at the altar and the voice of the Lord said, “If you know a brother has aught against you leave your gift at the altar and go and be restored.”

My first thought was  “Go to him? I am the one offended here! I am the one attacked.”

The Lord said “You aren’t completely innocent go and as far as possible be reconciled.”

I went. I apologized. I sought reconciliation. It didn’t work. A short time later the man left the church…but I learned a valuable lesson. I was left unscathed by the event because I had done everything in my power to display the saving love of Jesus in the situation. I was vindicated because I obeyed and took a step to try to save the relationship and breathe restoration into the situation according to the Word of the Lord. This is what I believe Jude meant when he said  “save others… pulling them out of the fire.”

God doesn’t want peace at any price. The church is called to hold a line of righteousness and purity. But as far as is possible he wants us to make peace with all. He desires unity in his body. He will call us to sacrifice pride, time, energy and resources to establish and maintain that peace. He will call us to confront sin where it manifests and then go the extra mile not just to cut the sin out but to restore the ones who have fallen.

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

8 thoughts on “Pastor Wrinkles: Hey Jude Pt. 26

  1. Pastor J, this is such a great series. I think you say it all with your closing sentence, “He will call us to confront sin where it manifests and then go the extra mile not just to cut the sin out but to restore the ones who have fallen.” Lord, I pray for strength to obey your command if and when a difficult situation arises where someone desperately needs my grace and mercy. In such a time give the words of wisdom to help restore their soul. A-men!

    • Thanks for this prayer Deb! Life is full of these difficult situations. We are constantly called upon to run the race with one brother or sister or another. These are days of great slipping away.

  2. Love this, Pastor J . .. and thank you for giving us a personal experience look at one way God will ask us to respond. Even when we’re the ones hurt. Also, I’m blessed by the going the extra mile to restore. God bless you as you minister to us! I really appreciate you!!

  3. I really appreciate this message, Pastor J–thank you. I wish more folks had your heart, that willingness to own part of the responsibility. And I love the word about how God doesn’t want peace at any price–I think that’s a mis-belief I have held for a long long time. It has caused me to often take all the responsibility–and then have to deal with half-ton loads of resentment, unforgiveness. That’s not good. God bless you and the fam–love, sis Caddo

    • This is really good Sis! The Word says “as far as it is possible live at peace with all men.” To me this indicates that sometimes it will not be possible. I have learned though that the impossibility is created by the other half of the relationship not being willing or able to follow God at the moment. It has very little to do with my being to love them for with God I am able even if there is stuff I have to work out. I have learned that when a relationship breaks I can still love even if I can no longer participate in “togetherness” with the other person.

  4. Peace – yes.
    Peace at any price – no.
    There is always a right way and a wrong way, and God’s way is always right. May we all be willing always to respond to His leading.

    Thanks for this and for the series.

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