SGBC Modesto

True Friendship

April 13, 2024 by

William Heinrich

Faithfulness is the foundation of true friendship.  Jesus is the model of friendship.  He called us his friend (John 15:15) and He was faithful to his friends to the end; “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends”.

 Friendship without commitment is artificial friendship.  Ruth illustrates Christ’s love to her mother in law Naomi.  She left her family, her homeland and her god.  Fair weather commitment is not true friendship.

Forgiveness is a vital part of true friendship.  Hosea had made a faithful commitment to Gomer.  He was a servant of God and determined to obey God and keep his commitment faithfully.  Gomer was habitually unfaithful while Hosea was perpetually faithful.  The great difference was forgiveness.  God was illustrating His willingness to forgive unfaithful Israel through His servant Hosea.  True friendship is never closed to grant forgiveness.

 A friend will always support.  When Moses died Joshua felt the weight of leading two million people into war.  But God promised to go with him always, even if he wandered away from God, “For the Lord your God is with you where ever you go”.  Again the Lord Himself illustrates how to support a friend and what true friendship is. 

A friend is not one who says he is a friend, but one who shows himself friendly (CF Prov 18:24).  Sooner or later the “word-only” friend will display his heart and not stick closer than a brother.  Oh, he may come back friendly but he is not a true friend.  Absalom had treason in his heart toward his father David.  He spoke supportive to his father but did not show himself friendly when he created a revolt and stole David’s kingship from him.  Beware of committing yourself to a “word-only” friend.  True friends stick closer than a brother at all times.

Therefore, a true friend is faithful no matter the cost.  Christ was faithful to us even to the cross.  A true friend does not make a fair weather commitment but was as Ruth to Naomi.  A true friend makes a perpetual commitment and is always open to forgive like Hosea to Gomer.  A true friend will always support like God did to Joshua after Moses died.  A true friend sticks closer than a brother.  He is not a word-only friend but a friend at all times.