Lunch Bite January 22, 2021

4 You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” (James 4:4)

Choose wisely the friends in your life.  Scripture is clear about true friendship that is first found in a relationship with Jesus who sacrificed Himself to save sinners.  True friends will speak the truth in love, remember the kisses of the enemy are profuse.  The truth we need is often a boot on our backside and those who care the most for us will have the courage to correct us.  Many friends will be confusing and draining.  Life is not Facebook and you are not defined by how many likes (kisses of the enemy) you get in the world.  Which James speaks to in this passage.

In the wisdom and truth given to James by Holy Spirit we learn a startling truth that if we continue to pursue worldly friendship based on the passions and lust of the heart, we are enemies with God.  Many would object that they are not at war with God as they seek to live their life.  However, the world is the domain of Satan, God has allowed limited freedom to him (see Ephesians 6).  If we choose friends of the world rather than friendship with God and His children, then we enter the enemy’s camp.  If we are in the camp with Satan, then God sees us as His enemies. 

Find a group, a church, a part of the body that loves each other in the truth, not judgmental condemnation but biblical love and truth as sinners seeking to help other sinners.  Solomon in all His wisdom knew this truth. 

9 Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their toil. 10 For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow. But woe to him who is alone when he falls and has not another to lift him up! 11 Again, if two lie together, they keep warm, but how can one keep warm alone? 12 And though a man might prevail against one who is alone, two will withstand him—a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Ecclesiastes 4:9–12)

Life is better together!  Peace and grace in Christ.

Lunch Bite January 21, 2021

13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. 17 These things I command you, so that you will love one another.” (John 15:13–17)

Jesus gives us the example of God’s view of a friend.  Certainly, we will never be able to do for another friend what Jesus has done for us.  Jesus states the definition of God’s love in verse 13.  No greater love exists than the love of self-sacrifice telling us that we are His friends meaning that He will give His life for us.  In this relationship as a friend to Jesus we are given access to the Father as a child of God and the wonders and will of God are made known to those God has chosen.  This friendship in Christ becomes even more special and intimate in the fact that God has chosen us as His friends and family. 

Knowing Jesus’ view of friendship, he expects that we take Him as our friend and share Him with others that they may know what it is like to have one true Friend.  No other relationship on earth can be more meaningful, satisfying, or joyful than to know the Friend who gave His life for you.  Do you know someone who needs to be introduced to your Friend Christ Jesus our Lord?  Or, do you need to know Jesus as that Friend who gave His life for your sins.

Why not sing about your friend Jesus.

Lunch Bite January 20,2021

For the big eaters who follow these posts. Today we feature the Jethro Bodine lunch box available in a 45 quart version. For those that are too young or who failed American History I will leave it to you to look up the Clampetts. Seriously we should have a Jethro appetite for the word of God.

24 Make no friendship with a man given to anger, nor go with a wrathful man, 25 lest you learn his ways and entangle yourself in a snare.” (Proverbs 22:24–25)

How many times do people willingly fall among the wrong crowd, are influenced by the wrong ideas, or simply like a good argument?  No one would really seek out a bar room brawler to have for a friend unless of course they like the thrill and excitement that  comes with a good fight.  This is not the way of our Master.  There were several times Jesus expressed a righteous anger in scripture, when He overturned the money changers tables, when he was confronted by the unbelief of the religious leaders, or the lack of faith in His closest disciples.  If we are honest, we liked it when Jesus went after the bad guys with a whip in the temple, but  we can trust Jesus because He is the one true living God and will not lead us astray because His anger is righteous and corrective.

While we may not seek out hot-tempered  people directly for friends how many of us are influenced by them because we choose to let them speak into our life.  The voices of anger and wrath are so much more available today because of our connectedness in social media.  At the time this Proverb was written the social media sight was at the gate of the city where people would gather.  People then were given to their passions as well from angry and wrathful words, but they were from people they knew.  Unlike then today the angry and wrathful words come from sources we cannot validate or verify, from thousands of miles away, and yes, I believe Satan has a Facebook account along with His demons and they are busy, busy, busy.  These words of anger if allowed will influence and affect even the best of us.  We will become entangled and spread the lies and become entrapped in Satan’s snare of anger.  Where there is anger there is no room for love and no room for Christ. 

Lunch Bite January 19, 2021

5 Better is open rebuke than hidden love. 6 Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.” (Proverbs 27:5–6)

We are often confused about true friends.  We think friends must be the ones always there to be our cheering section, to lead the procession proclaiming our greatness, or who smothers us with vain approval.  You know the words they use; you have heard them I am sure.  Everyone loves those Facebook likes right.  Now before any of us begins to offer rebuke and correction to a “friend” we must first learn what it means to be a true friend and to seek out those few relationships where we can trust the other person, and accept truth spoken to us in love.  Because if we don’t approach this as one willing to be corrected before offering correction then we will likely get unfriended and nobody wants that.  Facebook a few years ago added a feature to prevent people from being hurt by someone unfriending them, instead we can mute them.  Basically, ignore them without them ever knowing.  It is interesting how the features of social media mimic real life. 

To be a friend seek out those that genuinely care and have the courage to not lead a procession of false praise for you but to take you aside and with compassion and tenderness speak the words that God leads them to say.  Not sure where to find such a friend.  There is One who stands waiting for you to respond to Him.  Jesus wants to be your friend and Holy Spirit waits to speak into your life. 

Stop letting all these false friends slobber all over your face and turn to the one true friend God.  Be a friend first. 

God’s grace and peace to you in Christ.

Lunch Bite January 18, 2021

24 A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. (Proverbs 18:24)

Biblical friendship is defined much different in scripture and goes against much of everyday living.  In Social media the goal seems to be to have the most friends.  In work a goal is to build a network of contacts.  And it is often said that it is not what you know but who you know.  In each of these scenarios it is about being noticed, being known, and to create envy or sympathy from others toward self. 

Social media in this culture is toxic and expensive emotionally and spiritually.  The principle from Proverbs is that we should not be willing to spend ourselves in many friendships that are not true friendships but only acquaintances. Instead investing in few and true friendships is worth it because they will be there for you and you will be there for them. 

Facebook’s friends are not really friends put it to the test one day seek to get help, true help.  Back to the about who you know, this matters in only one relationship.  That is the relationship we can have with God through Christ Jesus.  Jesus called his disciples friends.  Friendship should be modeled on Jesus.