Borrowed Truths

Your True Friend

Borrowed Truths

Your True Friend

Are all your closest friends’ followers of Jesus Christ, do they serve Him without question and with joy, or are the majority of them still lost, living is sin and unrepentant of them? Who we surround ourselves with in a sense says who we are, for their attributes generally reflect our own. The same likes and dislikes, the same taste in music, and hundreds of other ideologies, are generally sought after when we are choosing those whom we desire to have a close personal relationship with, our friends. I do not use the term friend lightly here, in fact I never have, this is a person that we have given a large part of us to in faith, trusting them with certain aspects of ourselves that we do not reveal to others.

A friend is a confidant, a reliable companion, someone that we give and receive love from, and there is a friend who is closer than a brother (Proverbs 18:24). You trust this person and they trust you, there is very little of your life that you do not share with them, they can rely on you anytime for anything. All our brothers and sisters in Christ are to be our friends, we should be able to depend on them for any need we have, are we all not going to have the same address one day, the New Jerusalem? It doesn’t always work that way though does it, friendship takes time and effort to earn, and there are quite a few questions that need to be asked before we can know if someone is truly an obedient servant of Christ, if they are in fact our brother or sister, are we not commanded to “Test the spirits” (1 John 4:1). You didn’t think that verse meant we are to see if this individual we have just met is an angel or not, did you?

The Word here speaks of people, and people are very good at deceiving other people, in fact each one of us is an expert in this trait. Not always intentionally for malicious reasons of course, although there are some who practice this craft, but just in the simple day to day conversations that we find ourselves in. Christians don’t mind being humble, but they are like the rest of humanity in that they do not relish being self-effacing, we will die to self, but not quite to all of self, and so we still choose our friends sometimes on the basis of how they make us feel.

No friend would ever show us our faults on a regular basis, would they, wouldn’t they just want to always lift us up and help us to feel better about ourselves no matter what lifestyle we have chosen? A true friend is someone who will sit with you and tell you that everything is going to be alright, even when the diagnosis of your condition is terminal, they would never want to depress you with the facts. True friends hide things from each other when it might reflect badly on that person, never wanting to hurt the other persons feelings no matter the consequences.  So then, like I asked in the beginning of this letter to you, are any of your closest friends, friends as I described earlier, still lost in their sins, and if so, how exactly does that work in conversational times when you’re bringing up the person that you serve, the One who died on the cross for both of you.

Do they simply sit there politely and listen, are there times that they get tired of your concern for their soul and ask you to just drop the topic for a while? A close friend is someone that you are open and honest with all the time, and you have a light that is never to be set in the closet (Matt. 5:15), how exactly does that work? I know that you are hoping that someday this person will come to know Christ as Savior, we all know these people and pray for them on a regular basis, but just how does one carry on a friendship with someone who has no desire to continue listening to you talk about your Savior. I am not referring to the “shove it down their throat” speeches here, there is no self-righteous, overly pious religious text involved in my statement, just the average daily conversations that a Christian might have with anyone they meet, much less one of their lost best friends. “My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O Lord; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee and will look up.” (Psalms 5:3) This verse and others like it are pretty clear, all the time, no exceptions. Our thoughts, actions, deeds and words, everything about us all the time is to revolve around the person of Jesus Christ, in fact, we are supposed to be dead, and it is Christ that lives through us (Gal. 2:20). Now exactly how does that work when you are around your friends who are still lost, why would they continue to hang around someone who follows someone they don’t even believe exists?

You thought I was going to go in a different direction, didn’t you, you thought I was going to say that you shouldn’t be hanging around these people as much as you are. Not quite my friends, if you are a true follower of Jesus Christ, trust me, sooner or later they will leave your side, gradually of course, but leave they will. Darkness can find no place in the Light, and the Light continuously convicts them of their wickedness. Yes wickedness, these close friends that you have that are still lost have denied the Holy One (Acts 3:14), they have counted the cross as nothing (1st Cor. 1:18), and all their deeds are wickedness before the Lord. You do not have to leave them, they will leave you, they will have nothing, you will still have Christ.

It has happened in my own life many times, and not just close friends, but members of my immediate family. Do I miss them sometimes, sure, do I desire that they would come to Christ, of course, am I going to return to them and the world, not going to happen.  I am on a very narrow path, and by the grace of God I plan on staying on it, I can see the wide path right over there, and I have no intent of going back to it. “There is a way which seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death.” (Proverbs 14:12) Your lost friends and family are on a pathway that leads to eternal death, and if they are close to you and you are close to Christ then they know that, because you have told them, right? No one stands beside born-again believers but other born-again believers, the lost are either drawn to us or repelled by us, there are no other options, except perhaps one.

They revel in our light, the light of the Lamb that surrounds us, but not for the Glory of God. They want to be by us in the hopes that maybe some of that Light will shine on them and they too will be seen by the Lord of Glory. In other words, they are hoping to ride into Heaven on our coattails, so to speak. Proximity theology, if you will, because my mother or father or best friend is saved, that means I get to go to Heaven also. Not going to happen my friends, the gate is narrow (Matt. 7:14), just enough for one person at a time, and no one is holding it open for the person behind them. I know you love them, almost all of us have someone we love that is still lost in their sins. Keep talking with them, keep praying for them, but when they start to gradually exit from your life, let them go. You are to be following Christ, not them, and you do not want to follow them to where they are going.

Stay the course, trust them to the Savior, He knows much more about them then you do, and He loves them more than you ever could. Trust Him and keep following, He knows what is best, for you and for them.

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