And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. ~James 2:23
Of the many wonderful things to describe a man’s relationship to God, being called the Friend of God in Scripture ranks as one of them. This morning, we want to examine why Abraham stands out as a man who is called the Friend of God.
There is the necessity.
To not be a friend of God is to be at enmity with God. Our sins have separated between us and God, thus making us His enemies. To remain as the enemy of God places us under the terrible consequence of spending eternity in Hell. To be without Christ means we are living without hope and without God in the world. When the Lord Jesus shed His blood by dying on the cross for our sins, He abolished in His flesh the enmity, and reconciled us unto God. To be frank about the matter, God desires every person to be the friend of God.
There is the nobility.
To be the friend of God implies a relationship which is only attained through righteousness, which is by faith. Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness’ sake. This means that Abraham exercised faith in the death of Christ and His physical resurrection. Abraham’s faith was incredible! He had faith to comprehend that the sacrifices he made foreshadowed what Christ would make once-for-all for every sinner. He had faith to believe in the resurrection from the dead. Once he believed God, his sins were forgiven, and God placed on his account “saved by grace.” He attained a new, unchanging status because of faith.
There is the nature.
One who is a friend of God is a partaker of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. A friend of God dines at the table of God. A friend of God walks with God. A friend of God shares in the same nature of Who God is. A friend of God does those things that are pleasing in God’s sight.
There is the nearness.
In being a friend of God, Abraham had a nearness to God that the contemporaries of his day did not have. He could approach the presence of God and have an audience with Him. He could strike up a conversation at any time and be in God’s presence. He could intervene on behalf of others and have the assurance of God helping. He had closeness unparalleled by others of his day.
There is the narrowness.
To be a friend of God means that you have chosen to identify with God in belief, in baptism, in behavior, and in business! It means that you are not going in the direction that the world is going. It means that you will do right, even if it is unpopular to the people around you. It means that you are willing to endure persecution and rejection. You have chosen sides with God and have determined that is where you will stay.
Jesus said, “Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you” (John 15:14). A friend of God obeys God in all things. It is a privilege that God would call us His friends. Let us demonstrate our worthiness by living a life of obedience and good works.
Have a blessed God morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Matthew 24-25