Be Friendly

44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven. For He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 You therefore must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. ~ Matthew 5:44-48

So many of us strive for friendship with the world. We want the world’s acceptance and love. Many even go out on a limb and say, “Well, Jesus was a friend of sinners.” Here’s the thing: Jesus said to be His friend is to follow the command He has given. To follow His command is to allow Him to change you from sinner to saint. Therefore, Jesus isn’t a friend of sinners but a friend of saints. What does that mean for us?

We are to do the same. There was never a time when Jesus refused to eat or drink with someone. There was never a time when Jesus mistreated or condemned someone. Jesus spoke with and ate with anyone willing to sit down with Him. But even in all of His kindness, Jesus always corrected the sins of those He ate and spoke with. He never allowed Himself to be tainted spiritually for the sake of the feelings of another (Ezekiel 33:8), but He did it with love.

He didn’t call the woman at the well an adulterous whore, no He simply told her what her sin was, having many husbands. Jesus didn’t even bring up her sin until she did. Before that, Jesus was speaking to her about the living water He had that she needed. When they came with a repentive heart, Jesus didn’t even mention their sin, like the unnamed woman who cried at His feet wiping them with her hair. Jesus simply said, though her sins are many they are forgiven. He never once mentioned what those sins were.

Often, we believe that as Christians, we need to shun those who don’t meet our standards, but the Truth of the matter is that we should be willing to speak with and eat with anyone willing to do so.

God Himself lets His sun rise on both the wicked and the righteous. In other words, His mercies are renewed each morning for both because each day is another chance to follow Christ and do better than the day before.

God Himself also sends rain on the saint and the sinner. He pours out blessings on each. God doesn’t hate anyone. He doesn’t hate the wicked, His desire is that all come to repentance and accept Him. Paul asked this:

14 How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in Him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?

Romans 10:14

We aren’t to be a part of the world, but we are to be in the world shining the Light of Christ with all willing to hear. For if no one tells them, how are they to believe? Therefore we are to be friendly with all, but not friends with all.

Peace. Love. Go Forth and Be Friendly.

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