Skip to content

Christ Calls Us HIS Friends

October 10, 2016

Greetings,

Jesus said:

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.  Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.  You are my friends if you do what I command.  I 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.  You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit- fruit that will last.  Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.  This is my command: Love each other.”  John 15: 12-17

“Love each other.”  That is THE command that Jesus gives us.  He doesn’t tell us to go to Church or tithe or even read the bible.  Pretty amazing huh?  Because those are the main things most Pastors tell folks to do every Sunday morning.  Seriously, the three main things that the modern traditional “church” tells us to do, are not at all the FOCUS of what Jesus Himself would have us do.

Now I know that BEING in fellowship with other Christ followers is a needed thing, but there is a huge difference between GOING to a building for a service, sitting and listening passively to a Pastor, instead of BEING together in active relationship with other believers with totally open and free ministry and sharing.  Tithing?  Not even a New Testament requirement, but reading the bible can be an awesome thing if you allow the Holy Spirit to guide you through it.  Because without the Spirit’s illumination it is just dead letter that leads us to bondage and legalism.

However, according to Jesus, LOVING one another is the main thing.  This fact is confirmed in First Corinthians chapter 13.  “The Greatest of these is love.”  In fact LOVE is the most excellent way we can choose to interact with others.  LOVE is HUGE and we need to surrender to walking in it each moment of our lives.  We need always to be effecting the lives of others in a positive manner with His deep and sincere Love.

However, there is another HUGE thing in this passage that is often overlooked or misrepresented by traditional “church” leaders.  Here it is:  Jesus calls us HIS friends.  We are no longer servants or subordinates to Jesus, we are His friends.  This suggests that Jesus considers us as peers and fellow workers in His Fathers master plan.   Jesus is still the King of Kings, but He stoops to our level and bestows upon us the honor of being His friends.  This fact totally blows away the hierarchical form of government used by the traditional “church” and the world system.  Jesus does not consider us to be UNDER Him in the way that Pastors consider members of their “church” to be UNDER them.  This makes total sense because even the Holy Spirit, the paraclete, is the one called ALONGSIDE us.  Any “church” that has its members serving UNDER a Pastor or other human Leader is wrong.  So if you are sitting UNDER the ministry of any human leader… I suggest you get out and find mutual fellowship with others who are friends of Jesus.  I bow down to Jesus and submit to Him because I want to, not because He requires it.  He gives us free will and does not make us follow Him or His ways in this life.

That my friends is a HUGE revelation.  There should be no pecking order of any kind in the church because we are all His friends voluntarily submitting to Him and one another.  That’s right ALL submission in the church should be totally voluntary.  There is one Lord and we are to call no one Pastor or Teacher according to Jesus.  When we are all sisters and brothers submitting to one another there is no need for ranks, titles or positions whatsoever in the church.  This sets us totally free to simply love one another as He commands.  Everyone is important and everyone is a minister unto God and others as He sees fit.  WE are all called to be free and directly serve Him and each other in this manner.  LOVE wins when all things are mutual and without hierarchy in the Body of Christ.

Love and …..

Kirk Out !

p.s.  All I am doing is sharing what is on my heart and mind and I want to honor Jesus by sharing my portion of the truth in love.  I am not attempting to judge those who find themselves within a traditional “church” system right now.  I just know that we are ALL called to be free of Babylon, that confusing place where truth is mixed with the system.  However, I also know that all things must happen in HIS timing and not ours.  Grace, peace and love to you all.

 

 

Advertisements

From → Uncategorized

25 Comments
  1. Sue Heumann permalink

    GREAT POINT‼️ If Jesus didn’t put us in a pecking order while he was here, why do pastors and IC’s?? Wow. These things cannot be overlooked! Thanks Cap’n……

    • Yet, they are overlooked or blatantly ignored every day in the vast majority of “churches”. Very sad isn’t it Sue? Thanks for sharing sister!

  2. peterhorvatin3gmailcom permalink

    That is a great truth that you have shared and is encouraging!

  3. "BK" permalink

    Or explained away with ‘yaa but……”. An excellent point. Made my heart sing! Love, “BK”

    • “yaa but…” my ass? There is no true and honest justification for maintaining a hierarchy in Christ’s Body. Thanks for sharing BK. I love you!

  4. Clark Wade permalink

    How wonderful that our adorable Lord calls us “friends.” And “what a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear.”

    And still more wonderful yet, is that He “is not ashamed to call us brothers.” He has placed us, literally, “in the Son-Place.” (Eph. 1:5).

    “HE KNOWS ALL ABOUT US. HE KNOWS ALL THE DEPTHS OF SIN IN WHICH WE ARE BY NATURE; that by nature we were enemies by wicked works and children of wrath, but He took it all upon Himself and has taken it out of the way and NOW HE LOOKS UPON US AND ALL WHO HAVE ACCEPTED HIM BY PERSONAL FAITH AS BEING ONE WITH HIM AND ONE WITH HIS FATHER; THEREFORE HE IS NOT ASHAMED TO CALL US BRETHREN. What a comfort it should be to our hearts! What joy it should create in our souls! He Himself received from God, His heart’s desire and the request of His lips (Ps. 21:2). AND ALL HIS DESIRE AND REQUEST WAS IN OUR BEHALF, THAT HE MIGHT BRING US, HIS MANY SONS, TO GLORY. AND NOW HE REJOICES IN US, FOR WE ARE HIS INHERITANCE. He wants us to rejoice in Him and with Him in an unspeakable joy and full of glory. Our souls entering into all this and rejoicing with Him IN HIS SALVATION, enjoying the comfort of it; this honors Him and honors God (see Philippians 2:1-2).” A.C. Gaebelein

    Paul prayed that “the eyes of our hearts would be enlightened so that we would know what is the HOPE OF HIS CALLING, and what are the RICHES OF THE GLORY of HIS INHERITANCE IN THE SAINTS.”

    No one delights the Father, from all eternity, like the Son. And on that wonderful day, we shall be gathered to Him in HIS LIKENESS, expressing His very image, the image of sonship (2 Thess. 1:10). It is then that we shall “obtain the glory of our Lord Jesus” (2 Thess. 2:14). That almost sounds blasphemous. But it’s our destiny! “The glory You gave Me Father, I have given to them” (John 17:22).

    In bringing many sons to glory, the Father’s delight in His Son will be amplified, extended, even made more glorious. We will be before the Father in the acceptance of the Son, to the wild applause of the entire universe (Rom. 8:22).

    1
    And is it so! I shall be like Your Son?
    Is this the grace You have for me has won?
    Father of glory—thought beyond all thought!
    In glory, to His own blest likeness brought!
    2
    Oh, Jesus, Lord, who loved me like to Thee?
    Fruit of Your work, with You, too, there to see
    Your glory, Lord, while endless ages roll,
    Myself the prize and travail of Your soul.
    3
    Yet it must be: Your love had not its rest
    Were Your redeemed not with You fully blest;
    That love that gives not as the world, but shares
    All it possesses with its loved co-heirs.
    4
    Nor I alone; Your loved ones, all complete
    In glory, round You there with joy shall meet
    All like You, for Your glory like You, Lord,
    Object supreme of all, by all adored.

    • Thanks for sharing Clark. The fact that HE still claims us as HIS in spite of all our shortcomings and sins is literally amazing. HE will not deny us for we are indeed HIS Body. HIS Grace is immense and cannot be avoided in this life or the next.

  5. Hi Christopher,

    In this post you have touched on a favorite theme of my study and meditation. In the passage you quote, becoming Jesus’ friends, would have given the disciples a thrill beyond all other experiences they had had with Him before for they knew something which we have mostly forgotten in the Western world.

    We’re all familiar with the aphorism, “Blood is thicker than water.” In the Near East, the saying was slightly, but profoundly, different, “Blood is thicker than milk.” The word “milk” here refers to mother’s milk shared by two who are of the same blood-siblings, in other words. The word “blood” refers to the blood oath or the blood covenant. Those of us who are of a certain age remember the cowboy and Indian westerns in which some white dude is friends with a native American tribe and is adopted into it by means of a ceremony in which he and the chief of the village each make a cut in their hand and then press their hands together. This mingling of blood is a to-the-death covenant or promise or oath which ties the two together in a relationship closer than that of two brothers who have shared the sustenance of their mother. They share wealth and poverty, weapons and resources and, in many cases, their pact extends to their extended families and all succeeding generations. An example of this in scripture is the covenant between David and Jonathan which David implements in relationship to Mephibosheth, Jonathan’s son.

    In scripture, and here I’m finally coming to my point, a friend is one with whom one has entered into a blood covenant.

    Jesus said, earlier that same evening, “This is the New Covenant in My blood…” Crucified, His hands, feet, side and head were pierced. He bled, not just to the death, but to establish a covenant. The covenant was that of God on one side and mankind on the other, both being represented within the God/man Jesus. He “cut covenant” with Himself, making Him the new head of this race. Where Adam forfeited it, He reestablished headship for all mankind. He established a relationship of friendship between God and mankind. As Colossians 1:20 says, “…and reconciled all things to Himself through the blood of His cross.” Elsewhere Paul says, “Him Himself is our peace” and “He made the two into one new man, thus breaking down the wall of separation.”

    Being called a friend of God, is, therefore, the highest and holiest of all relationships which we can enter into with our covenant-making, covenant-keeping God.

    So, I happily add my joyous thanks to you, Christopher, in being grateful for being included in the circle of friends of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    win

    • Wow Win, I am glad you shared that study with us here. Because of HIS blood covenant HE is a friend that sticks closer to us than a brother. “Life is in the blood”!

    • Jayne permalink

      Would this be the very Winslow of Vancouver/Portland fame?

      • Jayne, this Winslow lives in Portland now.

      • "BK" permalink

        Jayne! You know Win????? Love, “BK”

      • It is truly a small world and the internet makes it even smaller. What a blessing?

  6. Captain Jayneway permalink

    “I no longer call you servants because a servant does not know his master’s business”

    Does this mean that I KNOW my Master’s business? What does that look like?

    Jesus just said I am not his servant, I am his friend. Plus…, I *know* HIS business?!?!???

    Seriously, what *does* that look like? A total game changer that’s for sure!

    18+ years of servitude, forever seeking my Master’s ‘business’.
    18 years of living/growing/evolving in the reality of my Friend’s business.

    A friend of God, no longer his servant. A friend who knows her Friend’s business!

    Woot-woot!!

    • Yes Jayne this does indeed change everything. How great it is to be a friend of Christ now serving HIM and others out of freedom rather than responsibility.

  7. What a great topic, Chris!

    I personally find that the following tend to be motivated often predominately by the sinful nature:
    ~ Wanting to avoid Hell.
    ~ Wanting to get to Heaven.
    ~ Wanting to get crowns in Heaven.
    ~ Wanting to get a better position in Heaven.

    But the only true motivation that seems to work for me is friendship with Jesus! And I think the reason is it is because we are designed to love God more than ourselves and to be friends with Him. Without this, devotion seems to get hijacked to selfish religiousness that lacks agape love. Much like the first assembly in Revelation 2 that were very devoted but lost their first-love of Him.

    I think part of the reason for this goes deeper than Institutional Church vs. Home Church, but that the demons are tempting everyone to try to prove themselves and getting this tied into religious devotion. In other words, the root problem of fallen humanity where the substitute is the human ego rather than giving all praise to the Creator:

    Romans 1:21-23 (NIV): 21 For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles.

    So, I think all of this may be easier to see in a Pharisee, but the it can so easily hide in temptations of religiousness that we all face. Here are a few scriptures that give examples of this:

    Romans 10:1-4 NIV: 10 Brothers and sisters, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved. 2 For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. 3 Since they did not know the righteousness of God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. 4 Christ is the culmination of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes.

    Galatians 6:13 NIV: Not even those who are circumcised keep the law, yet they want you to be circumcised that they may boast about your circumcision in the flesh.

    1 John 2:15-17 (NIV): 15 Do not love the world or anything in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in them. 16 For everything in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—comes not from the Father but from the world. 17 The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.

    So, once again, I think it is a great topic, Chris! And I’ll end with a story (followed by a short comment) that I wrote in the summary chapter of Deeper Friendships, which is free at: http://www.DeeperFriendships.com

    As a woman reflected upon her life, she realized she had spent many years in what seemed like an extremely large maze. As much as she had tried to diligently find her way out, she only found an endless labyrinth of passageways and dead ends. Each time she reached a dead end, she would feel a little more discouraged that she was still stuck in the maze. But her strong desire to eventually find a way out continued to motivate her to turn around and continue her diligent search. After many years of searching and finding only dead ends, she began to wonder if she would ever find her way out. But she knew such thoughts would only slow her down in her quest. So she determined that no matter how many discouraging thoughts would cross her mind, she would still try to continue onward.

    One day as the woman was trying once again to find her way out, she walked down a sequence of hallways, and instead of hitting the usual dead end, she found a door. She became very excited, since it was the first door she had ever seen in the maze. Next to the door were many keys hung upon the wall. As she looked at the keys for a while, she took a rough estimate and guessed there were at least three or four thousand keys. Even though there were so many keys, she became very excited at the thought that hopefully one of them would enable her to get out of the maze! So, she quickly began to take each key, place it in the door lock, turn it as far as it would go, and then push on the door to see if it would open. But each time, the door would not budge.

    After hundreds and hundreds of keys, the woman began to get quite discouraged. She began to wonder if any of the keys would even work, and even if one did work, would it really be a way out or only lead to another sequence of passageways and dead ends? As she thought about turning around and looking for another way out of the maze, she realized that if she did so, she might never find her way back to this door which could possibly be her only way out. So she decided that no matter how long it might take, she would try every one of the keys.

    After many hours and many more keys, the woman found a key that turned further in the lock than the others had. As she continued to turn the key she heard a click. She then pushed on the door, and it began to open! Her excitement level skyrocketed! As she opened the door she saw sunshine for the first time and before her was a beautiful meadow!

    The woman was so thankful she had found the key that had worked, that she took the key out of the door lock and took it with her as she walked out into the sunlit meadow. With the light being better outside than in the maze, she could now see that there were letters engraved on the key. As her eyes adjusted to the light, she looked closer at the letters and saw that it said, “Friendship with Jesus is the key to life.”

    Years later, as the woman reflected back on these events that had occurred in her life, she realized that friendship with Jesus had indeed unlocked what she had always been looking for in that it had opened the way toward wonderful friendships with Jesus and others. A big smile broke across her face as she became so very thankful that she not only finally knew why she existed, but that she had found the greatest treasure of knowing Jesus as her best friend!

    ***** End of Story *****

    Like the woman in this story, I too am very thankful and feel very fortunate to have found that the key to life is friendship with Jesus. I hope this conclusion is easily seen from what I shared in the prior chapters. I also hope this book has been an inspiration for you to grow in your friendship with Jesus and others as well.

    • Scott, I agree that friendship, deep relationship, with Jesus and then others is what it is all about. It is NOT about IC vs HC, although I do believe that HC grants us a much greater freedom to explore these relationships with Jesus and one another. IC mentality is more likely to keep us in the maze, but if Jesus is the key perhaps relational, free & open, Spirit led fellowship is a door to deeper revelation of Christ. Where I discover Christ the most is in the hearts and lives of others along the way. IC puts up walls and mazes it is the nature of the beast. Real HC provides a pathway with views of open meadows and other beautiful sights. That at least is my experience and hope.

  8. Good points, Chris. And I readily agree that some environments, such as HC, are more conducive to deep friendships than are other environments, such as IC. At the same time, since it is a deeper issue of the sinful nature, it can appear in any environment. Once again, some environments are more prone than others to “who is the greatest” temptation found in the following Mark 9:33-37 NIV verses.

    33 They came to Capernaum. When he was in the house, he asked them, “What were you arguing about on the road?” 34 But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest.

    35 Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”

    36 He took a little child whom he placed among them. Taking the child in his arms, he said to them, 37 “Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.”

    So, at one point I thought the issue was simply HC vs. IC. But then I wondered why some of the same nasty IC stuff also showed up in HC. That was until Jesus eventually helped me to see that it was issues of the sinful nature as the motivator. And hence the IC with its 1 person telling the many what to do is such a temptation of the microphone. Also, your HC seems more relational than some I’ve been at. I think part of it is that Jesus has given you a good handle on mutual non-hierarchical. For others, the HC can simply be a platform for the 1 lording it over the others without the 1 having to get a seminary degree to do so.

    • I hear you Scott and agree..the flesh can manifest itself in ANY environment. It is a problem that needs to dealt with in each of our lives whenever it arises. True deep transparent friendships help us to be accountable in these situations. I am glad I have friends who can speak into my life to help me grow beyond my shortcomings.

  9. Well said, Chris! 🙂

  10. "BK" permalink

    Great discussion! I especially like the part of the verses quoted that says we are His INHERITANCE! Imagine that…..US being what Christ inherits. Friends indeed! This discussion reminds me of Ken’s & my reading of Revelation lately. We are reading it in the light of it not being a futuristic book but the ‘revelation of Jesus Christ’ (as said in verse 1:1) shown by symbolism (sign-i-fying vs 1:1) as it unfolds within us. As we read it through the eyes of description of our experiences we find us all through it! The seven churches (faults, promises and overcomings); wild beast (as the Concordant Literal calls it) and its image; New Jerusalem……everywhere! We were just talking today about how it blesses us to know it’s not ‘us vs them’, IC vs HC……it is flesh vs Spirit. And as we follow that Spirit our friendship grows and grows and grows! “BK”

    • Wow BK! We are what CHrist inherits, we are the prize, the apple of His eye. When we walk in that revelation it changes everything.

  11. "BK" permalink

    Indeed it does! Love, “BK”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: