An elderly man shared the following with me today: His soul had been heavy this past month with various struggles and disappointments, and he does not have many friends left with whom he can share his heart, and from whom he can get good counsel. He was dearly wishing that he could have a close friend to go to.
So he said to himself, “I will go to God. He is my friend.” Then he immediately repented of it: “I cannot say that about God! How dare I call him my friend? He is my Lord and King!” Nevertheless, at once he felt in his spirit that God spoke to him, “Yes, you are my friend.”
This sent the old man on a little Bible study to search for what God says about friendship. He noticed these words of Jesus:
“You are my friends if you do what I command you. 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“ (John 15:14-15).
He also read this:
“… ‘Abraham believed God, and it was counted to him as righteousness’—and he was called a friend of God” (James 2:23).
So then, according to these two verses, if you want to be a friend of God, what you need to be sure of is that you obey His commands and you believe Him.
Friends share thoughts with friends. Friends give good counsel to friends. They take each other into their confidences, and they help each other through struggles and disappointments.
The only way for a Christian not to be on a friendship basis with God is if he or she makes himself a friend of the world. Let us watch out for that trap. After all, who would want to forfeit rich intimacies with God for the tripe served up by the world?
“… Whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4).
So then, God is Lord, and King, and Savior, and Master, One to be feared. But to the man or woman who believes all his Word and obeys it, God says this remarkable thing --- that we can call Him our friend.