A friend in Jesus

The other day I was thinking on what makes for a good and true friend? Some of the things I thought about is being able to freely be yourself in feeling loved and accepted for who you are as a celebrated individual in relationship to the other person, Psalm 139:13-16. Being received without the recourse of rejection over challenges that may arise within the relationship with a loyalty to protect and honor as even unto death (crucifixion), 1 John 1:9, John 6:37-39, 10:27-28, 1Peter 1:3-5. Many relationships are bilateral but to find that person who isn’t about ‘what’s in it for them’ only but who is genuinely concerned and committed unselfishly for your betterment as not requiring any sort of special performance is unique, Mt. 20:28, Ephesians 2:8-9, Romans 6:23. To have something which you can share together as bonding in a particular interest or way that helps solidify the relationship as keeping it interesting and motivated with purpose, Ephesians 2:10, 1 Corinthians 12:4-11, Acts 1:8.

This kind of relationship should be reflected in the most intimate of relationships such as in a marriage or parenting, but this isn’t always the case, one example of this kind of love is a reference that David made about his friend Jonathan, who according to David, was a kindred spirit which He likened to be better than the love of a woman, John 15:13-15. This kind of relationship drives and motivates a person to want to spend all of their time with the other, as this bond is effortlessly experienced with the greatest of pleasure, in complimenting the other so perfectly that their life has greater meaning, completeness, and happiness, with them, than without, John 10:10.

Personally, I believe that as social creatures this is something that we all seem to deeply crave, but rarely, if ever, fully experience. Makes you wonder how many have given up and resorted to becoming pet lovers.

Anyway, the fact that we can imagine such a relationship, which seems remotely possible, though humanly speaking, overly idealistic, is still something that we can anticipate as resonating deep within our soul.

However, I am reminded of a descendant of David, namely Jesus, who proved to be that sort of person as even going beyond such expectations.

When you look at the teachings of Jesus we see such love that was not only expressed in word, but in deed, as He taught on loving your neighbor who may be an ethnic outcast, e.g. Samaritans, to even include one’s enemy as serving to carry another’s load, Roman soldier, and to humbly give the other cheek to someone who has insultingly slapped you, to pray a blessing over those who have mistreated or cursed us. He also taught it was nothing to have a reciprocated friendship of mutual benefit and respect but to care for those who could do nothing for them in return, and according to the hyperbolic adage we are to forgive seventy times seven, as well as instructing us about the restoration of people who perhaps have lived reckless and harmful lives,e.g.prodigal, yadda, yadda, yadda.

We may see such goodness in what I first listed as great qualities of friendship but many of us have never treated anyone like this, nor have we been treated, as such, let alone favorably behave towards the negativity of an enemy. Again, we can see the positive aspect of this argument as great enough by itself but how much more are these sayings of Christ which treat people as seemingly beyond the maximum limit of human capacity, in that many would see such behavior as overly demanding as causing most to reel in objection with such repulsion as rebelling in their hearts against such commands to treat others in such a way they don’t want to, or feel to, as despising these undeserving gestures towards their enemies? You might be thinking that’s just too much to ask anybody and yet when you think of the person of Jesus that is often how he was treated in life and still He was able to teach and live these things, unlike Muhammad, who would have retaliated against such rejection. As a result some may say Jesus’ words are weak or shameful, yet in essence, such meekness is not weakness, but a restrained strength as putting away His rights to be right, and just to think that many of us had at one time treated Him accordingly, as with a venerated hatred, yet have come to know and experience His great love who reached out to us in fellowship, as undeserved, something you would rarely, if ever, experience otherwise, e.g. Paul, which is greater than the expectations of false religion with their conditional clauses for acceptance, when Jesus did so unconditionally, as we receive Him.

In conclusion, it is hard enough to find some of the admirable qualities listed above but next to impossible to find anything like what Christ speaks of in respect to loving our enemies and yet we would all hope that if we were the unreasonable one, which is most likely, in how we have acted or behaved, that someone would be willing to receive us even after we have failed so miserably in life. Thus, the perfect sense of friendship, as to what we would ultimately desire, isn’t just finding someone who loves us when we are lovable but searching for that individual who will receive us openly when we are not (lovable). Therefore, where can you best find that kind of friend except in the person of Jesus, in that while we were yet sinners and enemies of the cross, Christ died for us, the righteous for the ungodly.




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