- Date: May 6, 2010
- Teacher: Pastor Star R. Scott
- Scripture: "A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity." (Proverbs 17:17)
- From Friends
When we're talking about true friends, we want to look inwardly, if we can, for a moment. A true friend, Proverbs 17:17 says, "loveth at all times..." Do we have friends that we've really let into our lives? All of us are afraid to make ourselves vulnerable. None of us like to be hurt. Most of us want people to commit to us, but we don't want to commit to them. We fear the humiliation, the mockery of those, like Job speaks of, who used to be our friends that might now run from us and mock us. But, there are true friends who, Proverbs 17:17, who "love at all times." True friends, love us - - not for what they can get out of us - - but have seen us at our ugliest, they know all that is there and still love us. How much greater treasure can a person have than that? Can I tell you something? You can open up. Many of those things that you have hidden in you, that are keeping you in bondage, you can share; your true friends won't leave you. In fact, they'll be there to become iron that'll sharpen you. They'll be there. They will be brothers, for two are better than one, that when you fall will pick you up, not kick you. We need true biblical friends! We need people that we can have strong affection for and to whom we can commit.
The root of the word for friend is philea, which means to love and to be loved. It's an interesting thing that it talks about reciprocity and that's so important in all of these relationships, to have tender affection. Why would we somehow profane that word "friendship" and apply it to our acquaintances? Why would we even dare to spend time and energy and strength wanting to build commitments and involve ourselves in our emotional energies to people who are haters to the kingdom of God? I'm relating these things to the world. It's very important that you understand what we're talking about. Now, all of us love the brotherhood, the universal body of Christ. We come into contact with true believers and our hearts are to praise God. "Great to hear, man. What's God doing in your life? Hallelujah! Bless God! See you later." Some of you here are of the type that are, "Oh, now can I have your e-mail address? I want to stay in touch with you." You can't even keep up with the relationships you've got here! "Well, what's wrong with that?" The people that are of your family--it's no different than just bringing in every kid off the street. "Meet your brother. Meet your sister." Pretty soon, "Well, I ran into this one." Next thing you know--everybody's equal who we come in contact with in our lives? I don't think so. When I made mention before about the community here, I'm not saying that it's even possible for us to have the same intimate relationship with a group even this small, just the hundreds of us that are here. What I asked was: is God putting these relationships together and are they built upon eternal, spiritual things or are they being based upon secular, natural things? What can happen even in a community like this is there are times where great relationships are built and then God moves us on to some others to start building those lives, because the strong bear the infirmities of weak. The older are to teach the younger. It's not just about me possessing and keeping friends so I can feel secure. This body belongs to Jesus, not you. We're here for the mutual edification of His body.