Christian life begins with Christ and continues with Christ, but as we live for Christ, what are some of the steps one has to take.
The word ‘associate’, has several other words in the Thesaurus to describe it. Some of these words include accessory, accomplice, aid, ally, assistant, accompany, amalgamate, etc., all of which are reflective of “friendship”. To be an associate of someone is to be their friend. Abraham believed God and it was imputed unto him for righteousness and he was called the friend of God (James 2:23). The Bible records that God spoke with Moses face to face as a man speaks with his friend (Exodus 33:11). Moses in faith believed God, esteeming the reproach of Christ to be greater than the treasures of Egypt, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God (Hebrews 11:24-26). He gave up his allegiance and friendship with the world (Egypt) in order to be associated with (be a friend of) God and God spoke with him as a friend.
Step 6 in Christian life is to Associate – be the friend of Jesus Christ. This means that in order to associate with Jesus Christ, we need to have faith in him and we need to be disassociated from the things of this world, for the friendship of the world is enmity with God (James 4:4). Jesus himself said, you are my friends, if you do as you are commanded (love God and love others) and I no longer call you my servants, because a servant does not know what the lord (master) does, but I call you friends, because you are in my Father’s business. From being servants of God, we need to graduate to be friends with God, as was Abraham by faith (believing) and Moses by forsaking (breaking worldly ties), so that God can speak with us and confide with us his matters (the only ones that matter).
Points to ponder:
The Bible says, that there is a friend who sticks closer than his brother (Proverbs 18:24) and this friend is Jesus Christ. Jesus said, greater love has no one than this, that a man lays down his life for his friends (John 15:13) and he demonstrated even greater love than what he expressed us to personify, by dying for us, while we were still sinners and enemies of God (Romans 5:8). We need to graduate from being mere servants to being friends with God, i.e.,be associated with him, having faith in him and forsaking the treasures of this world. In other words, as we mature in our Christian life, we need to be willing to give our life for Jesus, our friend, for there is no greater love than that. Can Jesus call you and me, his friend i.e., to say can he trust you and me to give our life for him as he did for us?
James 2:23 (KJV)
23 And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God.
Exodus 33:11 (KJV)
11 And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle.
Hebrews 11:24-26 (KJV)
24 By faith Moses, when he was come to years, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter;
25 Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;
26 Esteeming the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures in Egypt: for he had respect unto the recompence of the reward.
John 15:12-14 (KJV)
12 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
13 Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
14 Ye are my friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you.