Question: What does the Bible say about friendship?

    Answer: The Bible is not silent when it comes to the subject of friendship. The word "friend" is found about ninety times in the Bible.

    Some general teaching about friendship. In the first place, the Bible says, "A man that hath friends must show himself friendly" (Prov. 18: 24). Some are too distant to form friendships. There is great value in friendship. "Two are better than one," wrote the wise man (Eccl. 4: 9). A true friend will stand by, even in times of trouble. "A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity," the Bible says (Prov. 17: 17). To the converse, the Bible speaks of false friends when it warns, "Confidence in an unfaithful man in time of trouble is like a broken tooth, and a foot out of joint" (Prov. 25: 19). There are some people that are not desired to be friends. For instance, "Make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go" (Prov. 22: 24). A true friend will tell us when we are wrong. Hear the Bible, "Faithful are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful" (Prov. 27: 6). Genuine friends must be cherished and not forsaken (Prov. 27: 10).

    Jesus and friendship. Jesus is the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth (John 3: 16; 1: 14). Yet, Jesus offers man his friendship. Jesus said, "Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you" (John 15: 14). Jesus is the ultimate friend of man. "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends" (John 15: 13). Jesus tasted death for every man and shed his blood for the remission of man's sins (Heb. 2: 9; Matt. 26: 28).

    In closing, true friendship is one of the great gifts of life. As we saw, man in his friendship with Jesus, must obey Jesus (John 15: 14). We must believe, repent, confess Christ's deity, and be baptized (John 8: 24; Luke 13: 3, 5; Rom. 10: 9, 10, Matt. 10: 32; Mk. 16: 16). Jesus' friendship is unequalled!

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