Monday, August 21, 2006


Yesterday's blog entry inspired a slew of emails commenting on the concept of friendship.

There were lots of insights, a couple of insults, and many who despaired because of the state of their own friendships (or lack thereof). Some had elements of truth in them, others were just sour grapes.

But here's a reminder: the Bible gets the final say on what a true friend is.

While many people scoff (Job 16:20), forget (Job 19:14), abandon (Proverbs 19:7), and even betray (Psalm 41:9; Luke 21:16) friends during difficult times, Jesus was a friend to sinners (Luke 7:34).

A true friend loves at all times (Proverbs 17:17), and the greatest demonstration of that is self-sacrifice (John 15:13). A real friend will always tell you the truth even if it hurts (Proverbs 27:6), but he will also always stand by you no matter what (Proverbs 18:24).

I am thankful for the friends who have slugged me with the truth, then put their arms around me to keep me from falling down. I always tried to do that in ministry, and am grateful that a few got it.