Summary: What does it take to be God’s friend? What was it that Abraham and God had that made theirs such a unique friendship?
THE FRIEND OF GOD
“And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God” (James 2:23).
There is within the human personality a need that is universally felt. It is a need that is sought and continually pursued. And so I wanted us to discuss this need, this necessity, which when simply stated is that everybody needs a friend.
To live without a friend is to reverse the famous adage that says, “No man is an island…”
To live without a friend is to be, like John the Revelator, when he was on the isle of Patmos far from the crossroads of human interaction.
Without a friend, one faces life with loneliness as their companion and alienation as their comrade.
Without a friend, the only response we get to the questions life poses would be the result of limited resources of: me, myself, and I.
**Two are better than one…
And so, I believe we are on safe ground today to declare that everybody needs somebody, everybody needs a friend. In your life and in my life, regardless of how independent you are – self reliant you may be, we need somebody who is loving and loyal.
We need somebody who is trusted and true, someone who is willing to be your confidant and counselor. We need somebody who will be devoted in dark hours, present in moments of pain, and sympathetic in times of sickness. Everybody needs a friend!
And let me remind you while passing through that everybody with whom you are friendly is not a friend.
Everybody that you have a social relationship with does not qualify for genuine friendship status. Because a good friend is hard to find.
That’s why we’ve all been told at one time or another to be careful how we choose our friends. For it true that "a man is known by the company he keeps"? Whether you like it or not, the world judges you by the quality and the character of the people you call "friend."
That’s the reason I thought I should remind that everybody who claims to be your friend may not really be your friend. Cain and Abel had the same genetic background, they were brothers by blood, had the same mother and father but the Word says Cain killed his brother Abel.
Jacob and Esau were twin brothers, the sons of Isaac and Rebecca. But you read were Jacob got in good with his momma and cheated, deceived, and lied so much that Esau lost his inheritance, and all Esau got out of the deal was a piece of meat and a pot of beans.
You do recall Samson and Delilah don’t you. Delilah proves that even your lover may not be your friend! (LAB)
Husbands and wives can live in the same house, eat the same meals, share the same bed, and still not be friends. Delilah was the one who cut the seven locks of Samson’s hair. Delilah was the one who put him into the hands of his enemies. Delilah proves that even your lover may not be your friend!
Job had three so-called friends-Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar. But in the time of Job’s deepest distress, in the time of his greatest need, he called them physicians of no value.
Even Jesus discovered that His closest associates could not be counted on. Peter denied Him; Thomas doubted Him, and Judas Iscariot, sold Him out for thirty pieces of silver.
All this, substantiates my claim that even though everybody needs a friend, a good friend, a real friend is hard to come by. And then, there are many who have no friends because they do not make themselves available to friendship.
You won’t develop an authentic friendship if you’re always negative. You won’t experience friendship if you’re always critical and complaining. The Word says if you’re going to have a friend, you must first be found friendly. You can’t expect to have a friend if you don’t know how to be a friend.
While we’re passing through, let me remind you that if you have a friend you ought to thank God for them. You outta thank God for your friends-those who accept you for what you are and don’t judge you for what your not. Thank God for your friends who appreciate your strengths and yet stand by you in spite of my weaknesses.
And listen, while your thanking him for your friends don’t forget to thank him for your enemies.
Mat 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;
Thank God for your enemies. Those who have drawn close enough to hear your heartbeat so they know where to stab. I thank God for my enemies, for they are the ones who have taught me how to lean and depend on Jesus. (LAB)