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Friendship with God

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January 26th, 2020 | Chad Gardner

“Prayer is when you speak to God. Meditation is when God speaks to you. Both are essential to being friends with God.” – Rick Warren, Purpose Driven Life

Jesus and Moses were both friends with God.

When Jesus was tempted, he fasted so food wouldn’t get in the way of him hearing from God.

Matthew 4:4-11

Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread.” But he answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'”

Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, ” ‘He will command his angels concerning you,’ and ” ‘On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.’ ”

Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'”Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” Then Jesus said to him, “Be gone, Satan! For it is written,” ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.'” Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.

He responded to temptation with these words: “It is written…” What do these words mean? They give a sense of permanence and finality. They reflect his humility. He responded with scripture in proper context that reflected the truth of God’s Word. He set an example of putting on the armor or God and having scripture memorized so he could apply it to his situation.

Isaiah 55:11

So shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.

Matthew 12:34b

For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

Jesus was passionate about the word. When he was tested, scripture was already in his heart, so it came out of his heart through his words.

The word is more important than your opinion. When people have questions, point them to scripture.

Meditation is when you allow God to speak to you. He’s always speaking.

Jesus understood. He knew how to pray and hear from God.

John 17:8
John 17:14
John 16:13
John 12:49
John 18:37
John 8:26
John 8:28
John 8:38
John 8:40
John 8:43
John 15:15

Luke 7:36-50

One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went into the Pharisee’s house and reclined at table. And behold, a woman of the city, who was a sinner, when she learned that he was reclining at table in the Pharisee’s house, brought an alabaster flask of ointment, and standing behind him at his feet, weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears and wiped them with the hair of her head and kissed his feet and anointed them with the ointment. Now when the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would have known who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, for she is a sinner.” And Jesus answering said to him, “Simon, I have something to say to you.” And he answered, “Say it, Teacher.”
“A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denari, and the other fifty. When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him, “You have judged rightly.” Then turning toward the woman he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.” And he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” Then those who were at table with him began to say among themselves, “Who is this, who even forgives sins?” And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

Simon had failed his guest; he didn’t bother to meet the cultural requirements of serving as host. But this woman, who had a hard life and was low in society, used her expensive perfume to anoint Jesus and wash his feet.

Being a good friend is getting past the surface. Nobody but Jesus saw this woman. That day he saw her heart.

Luke 5:27
Luke 19:41
John 9:1
Luke 21:2

Jesus took purposeful time watching people, teaching a lesson, looking at the things that mattered. He got meditation and prayer with God right. He is the example we can strive to be like.

God sees and understands me and you.

Exodus 2:23-25

During those many days the king of Egypt died, and the people of Israel groaned because of their slavery and cried out for help. Their cry for rescue from slavery came up to God. And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. God saw the people of Israel—and God knew.

Moses was a friend of God.

Exodus 33:11

Thus the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend.

Exodus 3:4

When the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called to him out of the bush, “Moses, Moses!” And he said, “Here I am.”

God saw and wanted to make sure Moses was ready. Moses was attentive to God and he said, “Here I am”.

The Christian life is good, but can be hard. God is patient with us. As we become more spiritually mature, we will be tested.  But just like a good friend never leads you astray, God did not lead Moses astray but led him to his calling.

God is a good friend to us, whether we are a good friend to him or not.

Meditation is focusing on a  passage of scripture.

Exodus 2:25 (HCSB): God saw the Israelites, and He took notice.
Exodus 2:25 (ESV): God saw the people of Israel—and God knew.
Exodus 2:25 (NIV): So God looked on the Israelites and was concerned about them.
Exodus 2:25 (NLT): He looked down on the people of Israel and knew it was time to act.
Exodus 2:25 (CB): God looked at the Israelites, and God understood.
Exodus 2:25 (MSG): God saw what was going on with Israel. God understood.

Speak to God through prayer and hear him through meditation. Grow your friendship with God.