As part of my Bible reading during “Coffee with the Lord” I’ve been reading the Proverbs. This morning I read this proverb that brought to mind an old gospel song. Here’s the proverb…
“One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin. But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother!” (Proverbs 18.24 NIV)
I know you’ve heard the saying, “With friends like that, who needs enemies!” Unreliable friends are not an asset – they’re a liability. They are a case study for the word “hypocritical.” You assume you can depend on them – you expect them to be faithful and loyal – and they prove to be anything but that… How are they sometimes described? … “Fair weather friends” – they’re near and dear when things are going good – they evaporate when things are going bad.
Jesus is NOT a friend like that…
Oh, here’s an old gospel song that came to mind…
“A friend of Jesus! Oh, what bliss! That one so weak as I, Should ever have a Friend like this, To lead me to the sky!
“Refrain: Friendship with Jesus! Fellowship divine! Oh, what blessed, sweet communion! Jesus is a Friend of mine!
“A Friend when other friendships cease! A Friend when others fail! A Friend who gives me joy and peace! A Friend when foes assail!
“A Friend when sickness lays me low! A Friend when death draws near! A Friend as through the vale I go, A Friend to help and cheer!
“A Friend when life’s short race is o’er, A Friend when earth is past, A Friend to meet on Heaven’s shore, A Friend when home at last!”
- Joseph Ludgate, 1898
And then a contemporary worship song that picks up the same theme…
“Who am I that you are mindful of me
That you hear me, when I call
Is it true that you are thinking of me
How you love me, it’s amazing (Who am I Lord)
“I am a friend of God
I am a friend of God
I am a friend of God
He calls me friend
Lord of Glory
You have called me friend!”
- Israel Houghton
Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lays down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants… I have called you friends!” (John 15.13-15 NIV) There IS a friend that sticks closer than a brother!! (And I have some wonderful brothers!!)