FRIEND, noun frend.
“One who is attached to another by affection; one who entertains for another sentiments of esteem, respect and affection, which lead him to desire his company, and to seek to promote his happiness and prosperity; opposed to foe or enemy.”http://www.webstersdictionary1828.com/Dictionary/Friend
Friendship can be hard to find, and even harder to keep. Moves, life changes, and tragically, death, can separate lifelong friendships and leave you starting over again. And then there are those who may be like me, more of an introvert, desperately wishing to be invisible, while at the same time hoping someone will notice them. It’s a terrible malady, I can assure you.
But there is a Friend who overcame every obstacle to offer friendship to every person who has ever lived. Even death could not prevent Him from offering a hand of friendship; in fact, it enabled Him to do so! If it sounds confusing, then let me start from the beginning. His name is Jesus, and even if you’ve never heard His name, He knows yours. He created you. He knows all about you. He knows everything you have ever done. And here is the most astounding fact, above all of that, He loves you.
In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. Genesis 1:1
I said we would go back to the beginning. Before any of this world was created, God was. The world is much too intricately designed to have been haphazardly put together, or to have made itself better over the course of millions of years. God clears it up for us in His Word. He is eternal, and He created all. But God was not the only one there, or rather, that was not the only Name He is known by. There are 3 parts to Him: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Spirit. They were all present here at the beginning. And in this beginning, in the six precisely organized days of creation, they created man and everything he would need to live in this world.
God said everything was good, except for one minor detail. Man needed a woman. So God created her too. He named them Adam and Eve, and He placed them in a flourishing garden with every tree and plant and shrub you can imagine. He gave them freedom to eat of anything they desired, except for one tree. This tree would open their eyes to evil, something they had never experienced before. If they chose to eat of this tree, it would change everything they had ever known. And they did choose. You can read the story in Genesis 3. The friendship they had with the God who created them had been broken, and they were sent away clothed in skins of innocent animals slain on their behalf.
As their children had children, and their children had children, men discovered more and more ways to practice evil. God gave them His law to follow in Exodus 20, but they found out very quickly that they could never keep all of the law. Though God gave provision for their sin, by offering animals as sacrifice, it was not a permanent reconciliation. Each sin had to be paid for by each person, every time they transgressed His Law. And it never ended….
Until Jesus came. He came as a baby, born to a young virgin named Mary, exactly as He was promised to come throughout the Old Testament prophets. He was completely human and completely God, and the only One who ever fulfilled every law for His whole life. He came, He taught all who would listen of His Father’s love, He healed, He pointed out man’s sin and their need for cleansing for that sin, and then He suffered. Men hung Him on a Roman cross on the edge of Damascus Road, and He gave His life there. He died to pay for your sins, and to pay for mine. All of man’s sin for all time was paid for on that cross that day. Some friends took his body down and placed it in a borrowed tomb. The soldiers guarded his grave and sealed it with an impossibly heavy stone. But they couldn’t stop Him from rising again. Three days and three nights in the tomb, and He was risen from the dead. Death was overcome that day, and to this day, He offers LIFE to all who will believe.
If you haven’t accepted His offer of friendship to you, you can right now. Once you recognize that your sin has separated you from God, and believe that He’s done all that He can to pay for that sin, you can call out to Him and ask Him to cleanse your heart from your sin and live there forever.
For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. Romans 10:13
He never fails to do anything He promises, and He will never leave you or forsake you ever. Please let me know if you take this wonderful step. I would love to know about that!