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January 28, 2007
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Sermon Outline

Series on friendship

 

Last week: We need friends. 

We need friendship with each other.  We were created by God to be in relationship with each other.  Church is not something we do but rather life and Church are intertwined.  Our personal lives are not separate from the lives of other Christians.  Our personal lives are intertwined with the lives of others.

 

Today: Friendship With God

Today has one purpose.  I want to help you change your perspective on God. 

If you can change how you perceive God, you can change how you connect with God.

Some of us see God as…

-         The all powerful Creator of the universe (Too powerful and too distant to know about or care about tiny little me)

-         The unloving hands off God who just sits back and watches as the world makes a mess of itself

o       (Sin is what messes with the world, not God)

o       (God gave man freedom of choice and because man chooses to sin, the world has become a sinful, broken place to live in)

-         God is who we pray to when we need something (He’s the Government handout.  If you fill out the right form, meet the right requirements, and turn it in on time, you might get what you are asking for.

-         Most people, for these reasons and others like it know of God but don’t know God.  They have heard of Him and even seen Him do His work all around Him, but yet they do not know Him on a personal level.  For most people, God is distant.

Many of us know that we, as Christians, are supposed to…

-         Worship God

-         Serve God (Do what He says)

But for some reason, we struggle with this idea of having God as our friend!

Before You go home today, I want you to understand one thing:

You were created to have a friendship with God.

 

Turn to Luke 10:38-42

What is the one thing Jesus is talking about?

It was not…

-         serving

o       (Martha was serving, and serving is important, but something else is more important)

-         or doing what was expected

o       (people may expect certain things out of you as a Christian, whether at church or at home.  But doing what others might expect of you can be important at times, but it is definitely not the most important things)

-         or making things right

o       (Martha was upset about the injustice done to her.  “Mary’s not helping me, Jesus…can’t you do something about it!”

o       Many of us get wrapped up in how we have been wronged and we want Jesus to fix all the wrongs in our lives.  But that is not the most important thing that Jesus is talking about.)

Nothing in this world is more important than having a close, personal, and growing relationship with Jesus.

The One Thing Jesus wants is for us to be close with Him.

He wants us to spend time at His feet.  God wants us to connect with him on an intimate level.  He knows all your dirt, all your pain, all your shortcomings and He still wants to be close to you.  He wants to be your best friend.

My priorities as the pastor of this church are:

1)  Personal relationship with Jesus.  2) Family   3) everything else

 

What are your priorities like?  Do you make time to have a friendship with God?  Is Jesus your best friend or is He something you do?  Is He part of your religion?

 

 

 

What would a friendship with God look like?

Luke 7:34.  The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and you say, 'Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and "sinners." '

He doesn’t let the dirty dishes bother Him

-         Jesus was known as a friend of tax collectors and sinners (The scum of the earth)

o       He wants a friendship with you even if you have not totally cleaned your life up yet

o       He does not wait to be your friend until you have totally cleaned up your life

        His friendship is not conditional on your condition

 

John 15:13.  Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.

He loves you with the greatest love one person can give to another

-         Can you begin to grasp how much love He has for you?  He gave His life for you, took the penalty for your sins.  His love for you is so great and He wants to be close to you.

o       He wants to be with you.

o       He wants to be deeply involved in your life.  He cares about all the details of your life

Does anyone know what God’s love is like? (As if dying for us was not enough)

Love is…

God did this, because He loves me…

 

 

 

 

How can I become friends with God?

 

 

2 Corinthians 5:17-18. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation:

 

-         Because of what Jesus did on the cross, we can have a close friendship with God. 

-         We also need to tell others about this friendship they can have with God.

John 15:14-15.  14You are my friends if you do what I command. 15I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.

Friendship with God means we follow His Word

-         Don’t be fooled.  Every friendship comes with a set of rules. 

o       You can’t say you want to be someone’s friend and then treat them however you want to.

-         I have friends that I deeply care about but I can’t be with them and be close to them as long as they are doing things

o       They can do those without me

o       I long to have them close but I know I have set up boundaries

o       God is a holy God and He has boundaries…when we choose to live in sin, we choose to be away from our close friend Jesus

James 4:4.  You adulterous people, don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.

-         There is one other things God asks of us:  Friendship with God means we turn from the world

o       This is a turning from the world

o       Often people try to grow as Christians and not remove the filth in our lives.

        We need to grow and remove the filth at the same time

        You can’t live with one foot in both worlds

Friendship with God goes beyond a simple acquaintance.  It includes faith and obedience as well.

Psalm 25:14 (The Message)  God-friendship is for God-worshipers; They are the ones he confides in.

Psalm 25:14 (New Living Translation) The Lord is a friend to those who fear him.  He teaches them his covenant. 

Abraham was called a friend of God because of His faith and obedience.

 

Closing

 

Open up your hearts today and start spending time with your friend, Jesus. 

Tried becoming the friend of Jesus?  Try confessing the sin in your life and let Jesus be your friend as He helps you overcome it.

Don’t know Jesus.  You cant be His friend unless there is…

Belief

Surrender

Obedience