Love the Sinner – Hate the Sin

Have mercy on those who doubt; save others by snatching them from the fire; have mercy on others but with fear, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh. Jude 22-23 HCSB

Having been in full-time ministry for over 40 years, I have been trained in several different witnessing programs. The first was Evangelism Explosion. The second was Continuing Witness Training, and the last one was Faith. All have different presentation methods, but the common goal is to share the Gospel message with those who need to know Jesus as Lord.

Jude is encouraging us to have mercy on those who doubt and do not believe. We are to witness to them so that they might be saved from the fires of hell. He also cautions us to be careful that we are not contaminated by the sins of the world. I like the way the Message Bible interprets these two verses, “Go after those who take the wrong way. Be tender with sinners, but not soft on sin. The sin itself stinks to high heaven.”

Challenge: It is the responsibility of every believer to witness and share the Gospel message with others. Effective witnessing saves people from God's judgment and leads them to forgiveness of sin and eternal life. Sometimes the best way we can witness is by loving the sinner as Christ loves them. At other times we must be bold in presenting the Gospel message so we might snatch them from the gates of hell. Unbelievers are in need of salvation. We should not take witnessing lightly; it is a matter of life and death. We must love the sinner but hate the sin.

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