Summary: Sermon 3 in a series of 4
Building Relationships #3
A Guide to “Godly Friends” and How to Treat Others
The past two weeks we have studied relationships. The most important relationship that you and I can have in our life is a “Relationship” with God. In other words, knowing Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior in a Personal, Intimate way. I came to know Christ in that manner as a young child when I trusted Him as my Lord and Savior. Last week, we studied the importance of having God at the center of our family relationships, from husband to wife to children. This morning, we take the next step in learning how to build Godly relationships. We endeavor into looking at our friends and friendships.
Today, let’s notice the characteristics of Godly Friends and how to treat one another as God would have us to. Finally, we will look at the ultimate friend and perform a self-examination of whether we know that ultimate friend.
Notice the word “love”. Love was recognized in both passages as the main key cog to a successful relationship. Think about this:
Love God with our everything
Love Our Neighbors as ourselves
Agape Love: unconditional love. Love, regardless of what happens.
Love will endure the test of time – Look at the qualities of LOVE
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”
I. What is a Godly Friend
a. Someone who is loyal
1. “A friend loves at all times”
ii. Proverbs 18:24
1. “There is a friend who sticks closer than a brother”
• David and Jonathan (read their story in 1 Samuel). Jonathan was loyal to David. David was loyal to Jonathan. It went both ways.
b. Someone who (knows how to keep a confidence TRUSTWORTHY)
1. “If you argue your case with a neighbor, do not betray another man’s confidence, or he who hears it may shame you and you will never lose your bad reputation”
ii. Person does not air dirty laundry
iii. Person does not Gossip.
1. Gossip will ruin a friendship
i. “A forward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends”
2. Gossip will ruin a reputation
3. Gossip will ruin and destroy a life if uncontrolled.
c. Someone who knows how to control their tongue
1. “With his mouth the godless destroys his neighbor, but through knowledge the righteous escape”
ii. Proverbs 11:12
1. “A man of understanding holds his tongue”
• If someone talks falsely of you, talk to him in private about the matter
• Don’t seek revenge upon that person.
o You’ll hurt that person and you’ll hurt yourself!
o “Vingeange is the Lord’s and He will repay”
• Beware of people who cause you trouble and then say “I was only kidding”
“A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it; and a flattering mouth worketh ruin.”
d. Someone who is honest with you
i. True friendship cannot be built upon deceit, but upon total honesty.
1. Relationship between a husband and wife
a. Without honesty, distrust develops then divorce happens.
2. Relationship between parent/child
3. Relationship with friends
ii. Proverbs 27:6
1. “Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful.”
iii. Ephesians 4:15
1. “Speak the truth in love”
a. Spirit can use truth and love to build character
b. Devil can use lies to destroy
Dr. Warren Wiersbe adds to this thought process:
“We must never take our friends for granted and thing that they will immediately forgive our offenses, even though forgiveness is the right thing for Christians. It’s strange but true that some of God’s people will forgive offenses from unbelievers that they would never forgive if a Christian friend committed them. It takes a diamond to cut a diamond, and some Christians have a way of putting up defenses that even the church can’t break through”
iv. When forgiveness is an issue; refer to Matthew 18:15-25
e. Someone who counsels and encourages you
1. “As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpen’s the countenance of his friend.”
ii. We must build one another up. Even in the bad times of life when nothing is going well. A friend is there to either pat you on the back or give you a swift kick.
f. Someone who is sensitive to individual’s needs
i. Do you know if your friend is a believer or an unbeliever?