Friday, January 27, 2006

Friend for Life

Recently, a French gentleman visited the United States and checked out our culture – including our megachurches. He found it curious that we held to a “new” religion that believes “God is your best buddy.”

Is he?

“Better is open rebuke than hidden love.
Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.” Proverbs 27:5-6

These verses on true friendship assume several things:
1) You have a friend you can trust,
2) You know the difference between a true friend and one who manipulates or flatters you, and
3) You are willing to listen to your friend’s words of rebuke or correction.

So, is God our buddy? I’m not sure a “buddy” fits this description of true friendship. A buddy might be someone we hang out with, but does a buddy tell us the hard truth when we need to hear it?

But God is our friend. After all, our father of faith Abraham was called the “friend of God.” Jesus also told his disciples that he would call them friends, not merely servants (John 15). God is indeed our friend if we trust him, if we come to him through Jesus Christ, and if we allow his words to do their correcting work.

This is sometimes painful – a friend’s rebuke is not compared to “wounds” without reason! But again, he’s not our buddy… he’s our friend.

(Note: The title of this post was grabbed from a song by Margaret Becker I happened to hear as I wrote this post. Not a bad song.)


Wartburg said...

I’ve noticed how that the “world” will allow for “truths”. I’ve also noticed how the “world” will not put up with or will not allow for, has already taken up three nails and two pieces of wood to bury, lay to rest and hopefully conquer “truth”. “Truths” they say “yes”. “Truth” no, no, no! You would be considered an elitist by these “elitists” if you speak about natural law or absolute truth. If you bring into the conversation the person of Jesus Christ it’s o.k. if you define him as a good teacher, philosopher, helper of the poor, a good man, someone who lived a while back there…If you present the Truth as it IS only found “in Jesus Christ” that “it is necessary to everlasting salvation that you believe faithfully the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ. For the right faith is, that we believe and confess that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and Man; God of the Substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds; and Man of the substance of His mother, born in the world; Perfect God and perfect Man, of a reasonable soul and human flesh subsisting. Equal to the Father as touching His Godhead, and inferior to the Father as touching His manhood; Who, although He be God and Man, yet He is not two, but one Christ: One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh, but by taking the manhood into God; One altogether; not by confusion of Substance, but by unity of Person. For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man, so God and Man is one Christ; Who suffered for our salvation; descended into hell, rose again the third day from the dead; He ascended into heaven; He sitteth on the right hand of the Father, God Almighty; from whence He shall come to judge the quick and the dead. At whose coming all men shall rise again with their bodies, and shall give an account of their own works. And they that have done good shall go into life everlasting; and they that have done evil, into everlasting fire. This is the catholic faith; which except a man believe faithfully and firmly, he cannot be saved.” Well now “we can’t allow for such narrow mindedness!” I say from the office of THE WARTBURG, “have an open mind”.

Joseph Adrian said...

Friendship encompasses many things. One thing that comes to mind is that in time of need we look to our friends to help us. In this regard I think it is always wise to look to ,and depend upon the Lord Jesus in the times of our deepest need.The longer we live and walk with the Lord,we will come to realise that our earthly friends will often fail us,dissappoint us (sometimes even abandon us in times of need),but the Lord will NEVER leave us or forsake us,but look to minister to our needs(even those we may ourselves at times be unaware of).

njcopperhead said...

Interesting that a (presumably nonchristian) Frenchman can quickly put his finger on one of the problems with "American-style" Christianity - failure to preach the full gospel. Christ the King indeed is the friend of his people but also the executor of justice and judgement. A non-judgmental "buddy" he aint.

Matt 13:40 - 43
Just as the weeds are gathered and burned with fire, so will it be at the close of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all law-breakers, and throw them into the fiery furnace. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. He who has ears, let him hear.

Many claiming to follow Christ face terrible judgment.

Mat 7:21-23
Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?' And then will I declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.'