We are all told since we were young that we must be very careful about choosing our friends. We all know the saying: When days are dark, friends are few. All is well when you are wealthy, when you are influential, you have many friends, people like you. When things go wrong, you often find
yourself on your own.
Jesus also experienced that when He was betrayed in Gethsemane, His friends fled and He was on His own. We must be very careful how we choose our friends. If we are Christians and we follow Jesus Christ we must have one primary friendship, and that must be Jesus Christ. We must cherish His company and His friendship above all things.
We read in James 4:4-5 “You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: “He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us”?
Jesus wants us all to Himself. We have a hope of salvation, of spending eternity with God in the presence of Jesus Christ. His Spirit living inside of us wants all of us to Him. We must love Him so much that we
want to spend all of our time with Him in His presence. He must be our Friend above all friends. We must cherish His presence, cherish being with Him above everything else.
Friends are often a trap. Very, very few friends are good friends. Many people cherish their Christian friends. Now I want to ask you about your Christian friends, if you are a Christian. When you are together with them, what do you talk about, what is your friendship really about? Is it about
Jesus Christ, is it about your relationship with Jesus or are you busy with worldly chatter, just carrying on like the rest of the world and just have the label of a Christian but it doesn’t bring you closer to Jesus. A friend like that is not a friend my friend. A person like that will take you away from Jesus not closer.
Many friends have wrong motives, you must have heard about a friend that walked away with a friends wife a friend’s spouse. Some people have wrong motives. And when you get to your friends place to often then that friendship will go sour. There is only one friendship that we should cherish and that is the one with Jesus Christ the others are just for a season, they come and they go.
Many churches are very friendly with people, they want your membership, they want your money. Just ask them for money when you are in trouble and see what they say. See how much love there is, see how much friendship, how much loyalty there is when you start asking, when you start getting in trouble. When you get in trouble my friend I can guarantee you most of them will not want to know you, they don’t want to know the guys that don’t have money, who don’t have influence, they are a burden, they are not an asset.
I knew one chap, he was baptized in every church, you know why? He says he went to church for the women. So then he joined the church because there were nice girls there and then he would go on to the next church.
So be careful about your friends. Why is that person your friend? Does he want something or is he taking you to Jesus. We must be good friends to other people, but we must not trust friends. We must be like a city on a hill, like a light in the darkness, the salt of the earth.
Never depend on friends, depend on Jesus, Jesus is our strength. We must not take our focus off Jesus Christ and our focus is eternity with Christ. Eternity with the King of kings the Lord of lords, we must focus the things above.
If a friend does not take you to Jesus he is not a friend he is an enemy. You must choose friends that will bring you closer to Jesus and you must bring other people to Jesus. A good friend we read in Proverbs 27:6 “Faithful are the wounds of a friend, but deceitful are the kisses of an enemy.”
A good friend will hurt you sometimes, will tell you the truth. He will tell you: My friend you better get right with Jesus you are on your way to hell. A bad friend will just always pamper you and say nice things to you. We must be careful how we choose our friends not every one who carries the name Christian is a brother or a sister, there are many false brothers and sisters. If they don’t really love Jesus even though a person calls himself a Christian then he shouldn’t be your friend. He is not a brother, don’t call him brother, don’t call her sister. If he doesn’t really love Jesus Christ if his life is not about Jesus he is not a brother and she is not a sister, but just a carnal person who carries the name of Christian.
We read in Hebrews 10:24-25 “and let us consider how to stimulate one another to love and good deeds, 25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near.” People say this is pertains to church, listen, you need to have friends who love Jesus or otherwise you don’t need those friends.
Many churches don’t love Jesus, it’s not about Jesus, they will tell you that you must come to church to be with other people there. My friend, if it doesn’t take you closer to Jesus it distracts you from Jesus and it is anti-Christ. Every thing must center around Jesus.
We read in Colossians 3:1-4 “Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your mind on the things above, not
on the things that are on earth. 3 For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. 4 When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory.”
And that is what our life should be about, about Jesus Christ. Paul also writes he says: 2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away;behold, new things have come. 18 Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation. 20 Therefore, we are AMBASSADORS FOR CHRIST, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.” And that is what friendship is about. It is when I say to you my friend: I am a ambassador of Jesus Christ please be reconciled with God. Please repent of your sin come to Jesus Christ, be reconciled.
We need to cherish the company of Jesus, we need to cherish being with Jesus. We need to take people to Jesus for them to be with Jesus not for them to be with us. Being in my company is nothing, being in a friend’s company that’s nothing that’s just whiling the time. But what is important is spending time in the presence of Jesus Christ being a friend of Christ. We must be acquainted with Jesus, He must be our best friend. Worldly friends will take us away. We need to be a friend of Jesus Christ, prepare ourselves for eternity with Jesus that is what is important, not having friends. Only reason for having friends is to take them to Jesus, then we are doing the right thing because ultimately what we are aiming for is being unified with Jesus Christ. Taking our friends to Jesus Christ also, so that they can be unified with Him reconciled with God, their sins forgiven to have eternal life. That is our purpose, we are ambassadors of Christ to bring people to Jesus Christ and to spend our life as a living sacrifice in the presence of a living God being holy and acceptable and useful for the kingdom of God.