A Friend of
By Pastor Max Solbrekken, D.D.
Jesus said: “Ye are My friends, if ye do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knoweth not what his lord doeth: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of My Father I have made known unto you.” (John 15: 14-15)
The Bible says: “For it became Him, for Whom are all things, and by Whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the CAPTAIN of their salvation perfect through sufferings.”
In order to be the perfect sacrifice for our sins, Jesus had to live a perfect life as a man, even though He was tempted and tested as we are!
“For both He that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified are all of one: for which cause He is not ashamed to call them brethren, Saying, I will declare Thy name unto My brethren…And again, I will put My trust in Him. And again, Behold I and the children which God hath given Me…” (Heb.2: 10-13).
The Scriptures states that He is not ashamed to be our elder brother, since He was made flesh in order to shed His pure and holy blood for the forgiveness of our sins and our Eternal Salvation! (Phil.2: 5-11)
SAVIOUR, MASTER & LORD!
You may ask: “Is Jesus not our Saviour, Master and Lord? How then, can He also be our Friend and Elder Brother?”
Most certainly, He is that and more! He is also our Substitute, the perfect Sacrifice and Propitiation for our sins (satisfying the demands of divine justice; expiation, mercy seat) and our High Priest. Jesus is also our Advocate, pleading our cause before our Heavenly Father to counter the accusations the WICKED ONE brings against us!
The Bible states: “Satan goeth about like a roaring lion seeking who may devour.” (1 Peter 5: 8). If he has no success in tempting, deceiving, scaring us or making an attempt on our life, he lies about us.
When he accuses us before the Father, Jesus – our Advocate - speaks in our behalf, stating that His precious blood shed on Calvary’s cross has purchased our forgiveness and pardon!
The Bible says: “...he (Satan) accuses us before our God day and night.” (Rev. 12: 10). The good news is that we have a Saviour and an Advocate who pleads our case before God the Father: “Little children these things write I unto you that ye sin not.
“If any man sin, we have an advocate, Jesus Christ the Righteous… If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1: 7, 9)
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
Jesus is the first begotten Son of God, the first among many brethren and the first fruits of them that slept? (Heb.1: 6; Matt.1:21; Rom.8: 29; Col.1: 15; Heb.12: 23; 1 Cor.15: 23).
Jesus is the first in rank before all others. The term ‘first born’ denotes the fact that Jesus is the FIRST IN RANK, and the first in INHERITANCE.
There is none before Him. He must have the pre-eminence. There is none like Him and there will never be anyone like Him. He ALONE is the Son of God and the ONLY Saviour of the world!
In Jewish households, the eldest or firstborn Son had all the responsibility, as well as the inheritance. When the father died, he automatically assumed all the responsibilities for the family!
The “FIRST FRUITS OF THEM THAT SLEPT” means that Jesus is the first to die and be raised, never to die again! Lazarus, however, who died and was raised from the dead, had to die again! Poor Lazarus had to die twice. He died and then was raised from the dead. Later, he had to die again!
Jesus was the FIRST to die and be resurrected, NEVER to die again. ‘Emmanuel – God is with us’. He is alive now and with us. We have His promise: “I will never leave thee nor forsake thee.” (Heb.13: 5); “Lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.” (Matt.28: 20)
In the above Scripture, Jesus used a double imperative. The original text is even more powerful. He actually said: “I will never, NO NEVER leave thee. I will never, NO NEVER forsake thee…”
While recuperating from a deranged assassin’s bullet, President Ronald Reagan was asked by his pastor, “Mr. President, were you ready to die?” He replied, “Oh no, I have much work left to do!”
The pastor interjected, “No, Mr. President, I meant were you ready to meet God?” Ronald Reagan answered: “Oh, yes!” Again, the pastor asked: “Why, Mr. President?” Immediately, President Ronald Reagan replied, “I have a Saviour!”
DO YOU HAVE A SAVIOUR?
My friend, do you have a Saviour? The Bible says: “There is none other name under Heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4: 12); “For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus.” (1 Tim 2: 5).
Jesus Christ declared: “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life and no man cometh unto the Father but through Me.” (John 14: 6). Don’t allow the false cults or religionists deceive you into following their pernicious ways!
The Holy Scriptures declare that Jesus Christ ALONE is God’s Son Who willingly sacrificed Himself and through His vicarious death and glorious resurrection purchased our freedom for time and eternity! Glory to God!