– Jeremy Taylor
We all have friends, but love sets the friendship on fire, and it spreads easily when the flames are fanned.
David and Jonathan
Jonathan was destined to be the next king of Israel since his father King Saul sat on the throne, but Jonathan knew that God had anointed David to be the next king and risked his life for his friend David. Look at the love each one had for the other in their friendship: “David rose from beside the stone heap and fell on his face to the ground and bowed three times. And they kissed one another and wept with one another, David weeping the most. Then Jonathan said to David, ‘Go in peace, because we have sworn both of us in the name of the Lord,’ saying, ‘The Lord shall be between me and you, and between my offspring and your offspring, forever‘” (1 Sam. 20:41-42). Earlier, “Jonathan made David swear again by his love for him, for he loved him as he loved his own soul” (1 Sam. 20:17). Their friendship was emblazoned by a love unlike any brother or sister would ever have.
Your Friends Love You Enough To…
Through the good times and the bad times, “a friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity” (Prov. 17:17). Friends love you enough to risk offending you because they want to help you. They love you enough to tell you the truth, thus the proverb “faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy” (Prov. 27:6). Even if it hurts, “the sweetness of a friend comes from his earnest counsel” (Prov. 27:9). I would rather be corrected than incorrect any day.
Christ’s Love for Us
Even back in the Old Testament, it was said that “the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend” (Ex. 33:11), which reminds me of what Jesus told the disciples: “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 15:16). Since Jesus was about to go to the cross to die for them (and for us), he reminded them of what friendship and love have to do with one other: “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). This is the love of a friendship set on fire and revealed in Romans 5:10: “For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.”
Do you have a close friend who loves you enough to tell you the truth? We need friends like that, ones who are genuine and sincere with us because real love is friendship set on fire.