Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: A look at the unhealthy relationship between Judah and his friend Hirah.

The Unequal Yoke

Friendship With The World

Aim: To show how our relationships with the unsaved must be tempered by our understanding of biblical Salvation.

Text: 2 Corinthians 6:14 & 1 Corinthians 15:33

Introduction: Last Sunday morning we began a new series on the unequal yoke. We looked at what the Bible means when it employs this term, how that it is translated from a composite Gk word, “heterozugeo” meaning “the joining of different sorts”, and we saw how the unequal yoke is an unbalanced relationship, and how that it effects the full spectrum of our relationships. That we are not to be “unequally yoked together with unbelievers.” The unbeliever being the one who is faithless, one who is incredulous of the things of God, one who is unbelieving and untrusting of Christ.

Now we want to think about this more specifically, and I want to think about the area of our friendships. 1Cor 15:33 makes a very insightful remark when Paul writes, “Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners.”

The idea of the word “deceived” here is that of seduction. The Bible says do not be seduced by others; do not allow others to lead you astray. You know what, I don’t care how strong we are, or how strong we think we are, all of us have the potential to be led astray. So Scripture warns us not to be seduced, because evil communications, that is, bad, injurious, harmful companionships corrupt good manners, not “p” and “q”s, but morals. In other words a poor choice of friends, and the keeping of bad company will often result in the ruination of what might otherwise have been a good life.

Over and over again the Bible warns us about the unequal yoke in our companionships. James 4:4 states, “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.” Unconverted companions have been the means of leading many believers, young and old, back into the world. How we need to make a clean cut from all our worldly ties and associations if we want to go on with God. You cannot possibly have communion with God and with the world too. If you get into friendship with the world, your friendship with God ceases. You join hands with those who disown His authority; reject His Son, and resist His Spirit; you go over to Satan’s ranks, and take sides against God. See Proverbs 13:20 & 28:7. We see it in the life of Lot who called the unsaved his brethren, and for whom the unequal yoke led to the damnation of his in laws and the destruction of his family. We see it in the life of Samson, as he gave himself to ungodly women and sought the companionship of the Philistines, until at last he was blind and bound and the subject of their mockery. We see it the life of the prodigal who had no sooner arrived in the far off country and made friends with the world than he wasted his substance on riotous living.

You might be tempted now to say, “Well, Pastor, if I did not have my worldly friends I would have no friends at all!” Let me say to you then, “Learn to live and walk with God; then, no matter where you cast your lot; you will never lose in your company.

A lonely heart that leans on God is happy anywhere.

Determine to make friends with God’s children. Take heed to the counsel of Ruth who stated to Naomi, “Thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God" (Ruth 1:16), or David who said, “"I am a companion of all them that fear Thee" (Psalm 119:63).

This morning, I am going to introduce you in the Scriptures to the kind of character who will bring a man to shame. Here is a Bible character that I dare say many of you have never heard of before, but he sets out for us the dangers in evil companionship - his name is Hirah, and he was a friend to the fourth son of Jacob, namely Judah through whom the Messianic line would come.

Come with me now to Genesis 38:1-30.

I. Hirah Introduced Judah to the Wrong Kind of People – vs. 1-2

A. In chapter 37 Judah had been instrumental in persuading his brothers to sell Joseph into slavery.

1. As a consequence of that he was party to the lie told to Jacob, that Joseph was dead.

2. No doubt t was difficult for Joseph’s brethren to live with Jacobs’ grief knowing that it was unnecessary, and it would appear that it was particularly difficult for Judah, given that he was the architect behind Joseph’s disappearance.

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