"For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek." -- Romans 1:16

  Quotes and Notes for the Day

GLEANINGS FROM PROVERBS – VII

The Attributes of A Friend

“Greater love hath no man than this that a man lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13

Most people agree that  in today’s society true friends are so very rare! We might have casual friends, and acquaintances; but  true friends! with whom you can confide  your inner most thoughts! Someone you would trust; and not be afraid, that they would tell your shared confidential feelings to others!   On the other hand, we all have many fair weather friends; when things are fine; and things are mutually beautiful and comfortable, they “are friends; but the minute things go wrong they are gone!!

Beloved, what a wonderful thing it is to have a true friend! And of course we all need one! But the Bible speaks about we are supposed to be friendly! I mean if we are not real friends; we have got to be!   In other words, we should a trusted friend to those who desire and have our friendship!!   The church I went to for many years; I hear all the time, “this church is not friendly, the people are not friendly here…” over and over again! But then they were not themselves friendly! They never spoke to anybody unless somebody spoke to them!! We ought all to speak to each other, and not leave it to the other fellow.    

Proverbs 14:20 here in this portion of the Scripture we are told to defend the poor! We read here, “ the poor is hated even of his own neighbor, but the rich hath many friends..”  Yes, the rich has many friends; but these are not true friends; they last as long as the money lasts and they vanish with it! “ happy is the man that helps the poor.”   You  would rather be on the giving end than on the receiving end! That is if you can help it! Before we are saved, ( and even after that); we have been on the receiving end. we were all poor lost sinners, once! God by His grace reached down and met that need and saved us!

Here we are talking about material needs; and we have in the Book of James; if you say to a poor and needy brother; perhaps hungry, or needs of clothing; and shelter, and you say to him, “well, brother the Lord bless you; trust the Lord, I know the Lord will provide and meet that need, and I will pray for you!” you say that to him, when you have what he needs and not give him; that is sheer hypocrisy!!   Beloved, God has given to some more than others, and these material blessings are not for us to consume them upon ourselves only!! We are not expected to live in a lavish life style; while somebody else over here does not have enough to eat! We ought to be a friend of the needy!

Proverbs 22:24-25, reads, “make no friendship with an angry man; and with a furious man thou shalt not go: Lest thou learn his ways, and get a snare to thy soul.” To strike friendship with a person; we should have something in common! But a friend, of this make up (angry and furious) will only lead you astray!! Such a friend, is no help at all,  to be what one wants to be ‘a godly person’!!That kind of friendship how long is it going to last? The first sign of disagreement; starts the trouble!

Here are some of the attributes of a true friend:

Proverbs 17:9 reads,he that covereth a transgression seeketh love; but he that repeateth a matter separateth  very friends..” A friend, does not expose his friend’s sins, or failures. Now this does not mean, hiding sin and try to get away with it! some people if they know something about somebody; if that is good they don’t say about it; but if it is bad, oh; they will bring it to the open! “haven’t you heard…”? “oh! Yes, did you know…”? and they proceed to tell the story; and the sad part is they add to the story!!   A true friend won’t do that!!

 1st Corinthians 13, that chapter speaks about charity, love; which has to do with friendship! In explaining the nature of true love the Apostle Paul  wrote by inspiration of the Holy Spirit that, “ Charity suffereth long, and is kind, Charity envieth not: charity vauntheth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own,….Bearth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.” that is, it does not take account of evil; it does not bring up evil to the determent of somebody!     We have the same truth reiterated in  1st Peter 4:8 which reads,And above all things  have  fervent charity among yourselves; for charity covers multitude of sins.”      It does not uncover others sins; it does not put them down; it does not endeavor to put them in the wrong light! The weakness of friends, we are not to expose them but in the stead to help them to overcome!

Proverbs 17: 17 reads,a friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.” This is another thing about a true friend! A friend loves at all circumstances; when things are going well and when they are not going well! A true brother of course will be a true friend! That has to come out naturally! And of course from time to time families fall out! But generally speaking, you can go to your brother, and he can come to you; with his needs, with his problems!!

To be continued………………………

 

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The Bible reveals two ways which people are following to get into heaven. One way, the true way, is God’s way. God’s way into heaven is the way of peace and truth and righteousness. It is the only way approved of God. This way centers in the Lord Jesus Christ who said: “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by Me” (John 14:6). The Bible declares that there is another way. “There is a way which seemeth right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death” (Prov. 14:12).

There are so many popular ways today filled with lost multitudes all over the land, such as the way of morality, the way of respectability, the way of religion, the way of churchianity, the way of baptism, the way of christening, the way of confirmation, the way of penance, the way of confession, the way of “doing the best I can”, the way of self, the way of education, the way of philosophy, the way of false isms and cults that crowd the street. Little wonder then when we speak to people about the way of salvation, that so many have asked, “How can I know which is the true way? There are so many different ideas and so many religions.”

But there is ONE difference between God’s way of salvation and man’s way, and that difference is found in a Person, the Lord Jesus Christ. You will notice that man leaves Christ out of the center of his way. You will discover that the modern false cults and isms demote Christ to a mere man and add something to what He has already done for your salvation and mine. We become children of God through a supernatural birth. Jesus said to Nicodemus: “Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God” (John 3:3). Jesus also said, “Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again” (John 3:7)

“May the Lord bless you, and make you a blessing!”  – The PGH Staff.

 

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