Growing up, I heard a lot about ‘serving God’ and ‘being a servant,’ but never much about being called a friend of God. The sheer fact that we can call ourselves a friend of God is amazing! Let’s see what the Bible says about this, because through Him, we can be living as a friend of God and sinners.
You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. – John 15:14-15
In this passage, Christ says that if we obey his commandment, we are his friends. Let’s look at this commandment, then look at what he means by friends.
In verse 12, He says, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” Christ loved unconditionally, and met others where they were. He did not pick a certain comfort zone, or a specific friend group, and never venture away from these things. Jesus showed love toward everybody, with no exceptions. He would not accept the sin in their life, but was not expecting sinners to behave as those redeemed should. Though He had His group of close friends, his disciples, to guide and teach and spend time with, He also intentionally spent time with those He knew needed to be shown the love of God.
THIS is the love we are to show. The unconditional love, the love that will take us into the house of the most despised so that they might come to know Christ. Jesus went into the home of the tax collector, arguably one of the most despised men of that time, and His sheer love changed that man’s life. He did not reach out as the Creator of the universe, He reached out as a friend of sinners.
The Webster’s definition of the word friend is “a person who helps or supports someone or something; a favored companion.” Christ reached out seeking to help those around Him, and people can tell genuineness from one simply seeking praise. He lived in love, treating all as friends and accepting those who accepted Him. In the passage we are viewing, we are told that if we simply live a life of love, we become friends of God. Well how does this benefit us?
When you approach God, do you approach Him strictly as being unworthy and hoping He might offer forgiveness? Be encouraged! Though we should always hold a respect for God, because we ARE unworthy, Christ has taken all sin away from us. When we repent and ask for forgiveness, it is granted. We are able to go before the throne as a friend of God, a child of the true King. Are we so ignorant as to believe God will take better care of the birds than He will of us? No! Ask, and you shall receive. Christ says in John 15:7 that if we abide in Him, and His Words abide in us, then whatever we ask for shall be granted. His Words abiding in us will guide us on what His Will is, and when we ask according to His Will, it will be granted to us.
Once you accept Christ as Lord and Savior, you are accepted as a friend of God and a child of the King. God wants to bless you, and will bless you as you remain in accordance with Him. No, selfish prayers will not be answered (James 4:3), for God knows what is best for us. A good way of checking your requests is to ask yourself, “What is the reason behind why I am asking?” God does want you to be happy, but we must remain knowing that God knows best, and trust in Him to provide what we need.
[title text=”You are a friend of God, a child of the one true King. Show this love in everything you do, and God will use you to change the world!” color=”#343434″ focus_color=”#d90000″ align=”center” line=””]