7th March 2017

What a Friend!

“No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.”
John 15:15 (NKJV)

Here’s the most recent definition of “Friend” that I’ve come across: “A friend is someone who understands your past, believes in your future and accepts you today the way you are!” (Fridge Magnet 2014).

God does make friends with frail, fragile, flawed humans. In the Old Testament he had a friend called Abraham, whom you remember was originally called Abram (Exalted Father). God chose to rename him Abraham (Father of a Multitude), after making a covenant with him and promising to bless him with a son, and also cause his descendants to become as numerous as the stars of heaven (Genesis chapters 15-17). Writing about faith, James informs us that the scripture was fulfilled which said; “And he believed in the Lord, and He accounted it to him for righteousness” (Genesis 15:6). And he was called the friend of God” (James 2:23).

The prophet Isaiah also refers to this friendship. Actually, he records God as saying “But you, Israel, are My servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the descendants of Abraham My friend” (Isaiah 41:8). Isn’t that amazing? God likes friends who are human and, in the same way, Jesus changed the disciples’ title in the header scripture from Servants to Friends!

As the old hymn says, “What a Friend we have in Jesus.” And this is the incredible relationship that we have in him, not because we have decided, but because he has chosen to make us his friends—“You did not choose Me,” he said, “but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you” (John 15:16).

This Friend understands our past, believes in our future, and accepts us today just as we are! How would you like to have a Friend like that? It’s easy, you only have to stop, say hello, and talk to him. As it says in Psalm 27:8 (NLT), “My heart has heard you say, ‘Come and talk with me.’ And my heart responds, ‘Lord, I am coming.’”

Prayer
Thank you, Jesus, for stooping down and calling us friends—that is so amazing, it is also incredible that we can also call you Friend! And realise that you are a Friend who stays closer than a brother.
Amen

Study by Cliff Neill

______________________________________________________

About the Author:
Cliff Neill is an Elder in Grace Communion Church Luton.

Local Congregation:
Grace Communion Church Luton
Farley Hill Methodist Church
North Drift Way
Farley Hill
LUTON LU1 5JE

Meeting Time:
Saturday 10:30am

Local Congregational Contact:
Harry Sullivan
Phone: 01908-582222
Email: harry_sullivan@wcg.org.uk