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Summary: Are you friends with Jesus? 1. This is our God's desire. 2. This is our greatest decision. 3. This is our greatest delight.

The Best Friend We Can Ever Have: Jesus Christ

John 15:9-16

Sermon by Rick Crandall

Grayson Baptist Church - August 18, 2013

*Friends are great. In the third grade, my best friend was Zach Smith. We caught all the old-west bank robbers together, killed all the bad Indians together, won World War II all over again by ourselves, explored the jungle in the woods behind my house, and rode our bicycles all the way into space.

*We were best friends. But by the grace of God, we can have an infinitely better friend, and His name is Jesus Christ. If you don't know a single soul in this room right now, you can still walk out of here today with the best friend you will ever have. Are you friends with Jesus?

1. Please know that this is God's greatest desire for our lives.

*The God of the universe loves you so much that He wants to be your friend forever! Jesus talked about His love for us in vs. 9, where He said: "As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love.

*Can you imagine how much God the Father loves His Son Jesus Christ? There's no way for us to comprehend that love. And yet, Jesus says that's how much He loves us! Amazing!

*And the Lord's desire is for us to be His friends forever. After Jesus spoke all of these words to His disciples, He began to pray to His Father in Heaven. And John 17 tells us that:

1. Jesus spoke these words, lifted up His eyes to heaven, and said: "Father, the hour has come. Glorify Your Son, that Your Son also may glorify You,

2. as You have given Him authority over all flesh, that He should give eternal life to as many as You have given Him.

3. And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

*Later on in His prayer, Jesus said:

20. I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word;

21. that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me.

22. And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one:

23. I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.

24. Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world."

*God's greatest desire for us is that we would live together with Him forever as His friends in Heaven. Jesus loves us. But how can we measure His love?

[1] We measure it by the distance He came for us.

*Love goes the distance, and nobody went farther for us than Jesus Christ. We have to keep this passage of Scripture in perspective. Jesus was just a few hours away from the cross. But the very fact that He was having a conversation with humans like us is amazing.

*Remember how the Apostle John began His Gospel. John 1:1-4 calls Jesus "the Word". And there John said:

1. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

2. He was in the beginning with God.

3. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made.

4. In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.

*God the Son Jesus Christ was one with the Heavenly Father in all eternity past. But Jesus came to earth and became a man, because love goes the distance for us.

*Max Lucado noticed an example of Jesus going the distance very early in the Lord's ministry. We find the story in John chapter 2, just after Jesus started calling His disciples. And they walked 90 miles from Jericho to Cana to go to a wedding.

*Max Lucado asked: "Why did Jesus go to the wedding? The answer is found in John 2:2: 'Jesus and His disciples were invited to the wedding.'"

*And Lucado gave this insight: "Jesus wasn't invited because he was a celebrity. He wasn't one yet. The invitation wasn't motivated by his miracles. He hadn't performed any yet. Why did they invite him? I suppose they liked him. Big deal? I think so. I think it's significant that common folk in a little town enjoyed being with Jesus.

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