New friends are made throughout our whole lives. Some friends are only there for a season, and others remain for a lifetime. Whatever the span of friendship, nothing can compare to the value of a good friend. Here are some biblical examples of good friends we can learn from.
David and Jonathan
“Jonathan said to David, ‘Whatever you want me to do, I’ll do for you.’”1 Samue 20:4 NIV
David and Jonathan are a pair of friends found in the Old Testament. Jonathan is the son of the current king, Saul, and David is to be appointed king after Saul. When Saul threatens to kill David, Jonathan helps David escape. They make a plan, create a covenant together, and share a tearful goodbye. Later, when Jonathan is killed in battle, David laments for him, saying, “I grieve for you, Jonathan my brother; you were very dear to me. Your love for me was wonderful, more wonderful than that of women” (2 Samuel 1:26). David and Jonathan’s friendship shows the beauty of loyalty and watching out for each other in the face of adversity. When I think of David and Jonathan, I am reminded to be a dependable friend to those I love.
Ruth and Naomi
“But Ruth replied, ‘Don’t urge me to leave you or to turn back from you. Where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay. Your people will be my people and your God my God.’”ruth 1:16 NIV
Ruth and Naomi are another pair of friends found in the Old Testament. They were connected because Ruth was Naomi’s daughter-in-law. When Naomi’s husband and sons died, she urged Ruth to go back to her father where she could be taken care of. Ruth refused, choosing to stay by Naomi’s side, regardless of the outcome. In this time in history, a woman’s social status was defined by the men in her family. With Naomi no longer having a husband or son, she was left practically with nothing. Naomi and Ruth’s friendship teaches us the power of sacrifice, as Ruth refused the security her father could have provided to stay by Naomi’s side. Ruth later gets married to Boaz, and Boaz makes sure to take care of both of these special women.
Jesus and Peter
“‘Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift all of you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.’”Luke 22:31-32
We see the friendship of Jesus and Peter unfold throughout the Gospels. In this instance, Jesus speaks life into Peter. This moment of friendship is so precious to me because I can see how Jesus believes in Peter. He doesn’t let his mistakes define him in His eyes, but encourages him to use his strength to lift up others. This is such an important pillar of friendship. The words we speak to and over our friends will boost them toward success or hold them back from growth. If Jesus had said, “you’re going to fail, and I want you to know that’s what I expect from someone as reckless as you,” there’s no telling what the rest of Peter’s story would be. But, we know Peter becomes the rock Christ builds His church on. Praise God!
Paul and the Philippians
“In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”Philippians 1:4-6 NIV
Paul has a close friendship with many of the churches of the New Testament. Paul’s friendship with the Philippians shows the power of praying for your friends. As Paul prays for these churches, the Lord builds them and equips them to share the Gospel successfully and bear good fruit. The secret to long distance friendships is praying for those you love! The friends who pray for you not only fight for you physically, but fight for you spiritually, and how valuable that is!
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Kayla Wright is a frequent guest author on this blog. She joined the counseling team at Life Training Christian Counseling in Louisville, Kentucky in May of this year. The passion of her counseling work is to make a meaningful difference in the lives of Teens and pre-teens.
Kayla is nationally licensed as a Christian Counselor by the National Christian Counselors Association. She possesses an advanced board certification in Child & Adolescent Therapy. Kayla gained extensive experience and credibility in providing counseling to teens and pre-teens during her tenure on the staff of Revive Christian Counseling in Owensboro and Madisonville, Kentucky. She is highly skilled in teenage substance abuse counseling and teenage depression counseling.
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