Jude 1:23 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Jude 1:23, NIV: save others by snatching them from the fire; to others show mercy, mixed with fear--hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh.

Jude 1:23, ESV: save others by snatching them out of the fire; to others show mercy with fear, hating even the garment stained by the flesh.

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

Jude 1:23, NASB: save others, snatching them out of the fire; and on some have mercy with fear, hating even the garment polluted by the flesh.

Jude 1:23, NLT: Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives.

Jude 1:23, CSB: save others by snatching them from the fire; have mercy on others but with fear, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.

What does Jude 1:23 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

In this verse, Jude urges his readers to "snatch out of the fire" unbelievers who are perilously close to entering eternal punishment. A key point made in this letter is the danger posed by false teachers. Not only do these men place themselves in danger of eternal punishment (Jude 1:13), they can also disrupt the faith of others (Jude 1:10–12). For those who are not in open rebellion, but are merely confused or suffering from doubt, our response should be that of mercy. We need to seek their redemption, not their condemnation (Jude 1:22).

At the same time, Jude portrays some unbelievers as so contaminated by immorality that this compassion needs to come with sensible caution. It is commendable to reach grossly immoral unbelievers, but it is unacceptable to be drawn into their immorality. Jesus reached out with the message of forgiveness to the most sinful members of society (Mark 2:15–17), but He did not participate in their sin (Hebrews 4:15). Nor did He approve of it (John 8:11).