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Manuscript Releases Volume Twelve : Page 96

19. Compassion Toward the Penitent

"And of some have compassion, making a difference" (Jude 22). Those who are wise in the wisdom born of God will see souls in need of help, souls who have been overcome, and who, though they have sincerely repented, would scarcely dare, without encouragement, to lay hold of hope. The Lord will put it into the hearts of those who are stewards of His grace to welcome these trembling, repentant souls to their loving fellowship. His true followers will not treat sinners as if they were beyond forgiveness. They will have compassion on those whose circumstances have been unfavorable, and who have allowed Satan to lead them in forbidden paths. These souls have sinned against God, but if they repent and show the genuineness of their repentance by earnest efforts to serve the Lord, who shall dare forbid them? Encourage them. Give them an opportunity to regain what they have lost.

Pride, covetousness, sensuality, may have been their besetting sins. Point out their errors, but not in a way that will drive them from Christ. By words of loving compassion draw them to Him. However low they may have fallen, do not destroy their hope of pardon. Labor for them, pray with them, point them to the Redeemer. And when in repentance and contrition they come to Him, give them something to do for Him. If they desire to labor to save others from the pit of destruction from which they themselves were rescued, give them room to work.

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If possible, connect them with the work of God, that by association with believers and workers they may gain spiritual strength. Do not allow them to drift away. Set them at work winning souls to Christ. Fill their hearts and hands with work for the Master. Let them do all in their power to work for Christ. Do not set them apart from you as those you cannot trust. If they have learned their lesson of test and trial, they know how to pity those who are tempted as they were.

By earnest, Christlike efforts, men will be convicted and converted, and God will speak pardon to them. Let no one turn away a soul who leaves the service of Satan and asks Jesus for pardon. "Of some have compassion, making a difference." When they give evidence that the Spirit of God is striving with them present to them every encouragement for entering the Lord's service. Do not discourage them by indifference, by drawing away from them with an air of, "I am holier than thou."

Those who act as Pharisees may not be guilty of exactly the same sins they condemn in others, but they may be guilty of sins much greater in the sight of God. Each will be rewarded according to his work. Let those who condemn others take heed to themselves, lest they be condemned by God for Phariseeism.--Ms 37, 1902, pp. 7, 8. ("Of Some Having Compassion, Making a Difference," March 9, 1902.) White Estate Washington, D. C. July 15, 1982