Have you questioned what you believe lately? It’s a good thing to do, you know. When we question what we believe, we usually end up in one of two places – 1.) we find we weren’t believing the true and in turn, find the truth, or 2.), our faith is strengthened in what we believe.
If I was to ask most Christians if they were a friend of God, they would say, “of course I am,” and rightfully so. But is that all that we are? Are we just friends of God? Are you just a friend of God? If the highlight of your relationship with God is being His friend, then you are missing it – big time.
Just think about it – how many times does God actually call us, or anyone, a friend of God? Not much actually. In fact, there’s only three times where it is ever mentioned that anyone was called a friend of God.
Moses wasn’t actually called a friend of God, but the Bible does say that God talked to him as one talks to a friend.
So the LORD spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend. And he would return to the camp, but his servant Joshua the son of Nun, a young man, did not depart from the tabernacle. – Exodus 33:11 NKJV
Technically, you could call Moses a friend of God, but it doesn’t say specifically that Moses was a friend of God. However, I have no doubt that Moses was a friend of God.
And then of course there’s Abraham, who was called specifically a friend of God. James 2:23 says, “And the Scripture was fulfilled which says, “Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.” And he was called the friend of God.” So Abraham was definitely called a friend of God.
Of course there are other scriptures in the Old Testament that gives the idea that God was friendly or had a closer relationship with others than what is normally considered. Enoch walked with God. Adam and Eve walked with God. Job had a friendly relationship with God. David had a relationship with God like no other. But none of them specially are called a friend of God. But that’s it really.
Then there’s one other scripture that talks about the disciples of Jesus, even us, being friends of God. That’s found in the Gospel of John, when Jesus is talking specifically to His disciples.
Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.  You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.  No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. – John 15:13-15 NKJV
Of course Jesus is talking to the disciples here, and this extends to us as believers. Being called a friend of God has a qualifier on it here though. Jesus says that you will be called a friend of God, if you keep His commandments. That’s it.
That’s the only instances of anyone being called a friend of God. That’s not many really. And if your relationship with the Creator of the Universe is just being His friend, that’s kind of limited. It’s not bad, and it’s a whole lot better than the majority of people, but there’s something greater.
But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: – John 1:12 NKJV
Jesus told the disciples that they would be called a friend of God, among other reasons, to break the thought in their minds that they were just a servant to their Master. For years they were traveling with Jesus and learning from their Rabbi, their Master, and there was a thought in them about who He was and who they were. Then Jesus changes it all by telling them that He would call them friend if they would obey His commands.
There was this moment when they were brought up to His level (in one way) and called friends. But then there was something else. It wasn’t just a servant, just a friend, but a child.
Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! Therefore the world does not know us, because it did not know Him. – 1 John 3:1 NKJV
As Christians, we’re not just called friends of God, we’re called children of God. Being a friend of God is cool, don’t get me wrong. However, I don’t know about you, but I sure would prefer to be a child than a friend. Both of them give us an idea of our relationship with the Father, but one is greater.
I have friends that I can hang out with, have common interests with, and I can share things with them, but there isn’t any way that they’re going to walk through my front door and grab food from my fridge without asking. My kids on the other hand, they do it all the time. My kids live in my house, eat my food, enjoy my internet, electricity, water, and more – all while I pay the bills. They do nothing. They get to enjoy the benefits of being my children. My friends? Nope!
There’s benefits to being a child of God and there’s benefits to being a friend of God. But the greater benefits come as a child of God. Jesus has done so much and provided so much so that we can be called children of God. Yes, you are a friend of God, but never forget that you’re more than a friend, you’re a child of God. You have a better relationship with God than Moses and Abraham ever had. Take advantage of it. Enjoy your Father and enjoy the benefits of being one of His kids .