to have friends Part I
Bible Study 05/04/11
Bishop Walker III
Many of us
struggle with this idea of friendship.
In fact, many of us can count on one hand, how many real friends we have.
Remember the song, “Friends” by Whodini? If you think about it,
Whodini might have been on to something. All of us have experienced the
complexity of friends. It is really difficult, because many of us have
experienced wounds and bitterness from our so called friends. Today we want you
to understand who really doesn’t qualify to be your friend.
1:10 NKJV says 10My son,
if sinners entice thee, consent thou not.- King Solomon says we have to be
careful about the associations that we have, because those associations can
bring about simulation, which means you could be in danger of becoming like the people that you hang out
with. This is where the whole idea, “Birds of a feather flock
together” comes from.
People you should not be in friendship with:
- Stay away from violent people – These are people scary to be
around. They throw things and talk with an elevated voice whenever
disagreement comes up.
- Stay away from greedy people- Proverbs 1:19 (NKJV) says
19 So are the ways of everyone who is greedy for gain; It takes away the
life of its owners.- These are people that are in pursuit of stuff all the
time. They always want more.
Manifestations of greedy people:
thief – Person that will take and steal.
rich person – Once they
arrive at a certain level, they think they are better than others.
thief – Will still from
you as if you don’t know they are stealing from you
- Can’t wait crowd – Will do anything to get
it, even manipulating people.
- Stay away from froward people – They swerve from one side to the
other. They can’t make up their mind. They go from one way to
another. Proverbs 2:12 says 12To deliver thee from the way of the evil
man, from the man that speaketh froward things; – There is no stability in
- Stay away from people who despise knowledge. Proverbs 1:29
says 29For that
they hated knowledge, and did not choose the fear of the LORD: – These are people who do not want to
grow in the word of God. Often people that don’t want to do better don’t
want you to do better, because when you do better, you intimidate them. As
long as you both struggle, they are good.
- Stay away from immoral people – They will do anything. They have
no moral compass. Proverbs 2:16-19 says 16To deliver thee from the
strange woman, even from the stranger which flattereth with her words;
17Which forsaketh the guide of her youth, and forgetteth the covenant of
her God. 18For her house inclineth unto death, and her paths unto the
dead. 19None that go unto her return again, neither take they hold of the
paths of life.
- Stay away from talebarriers – These are people that gossip too
much. Proverbs 10:19 says 19In the multitude of words there wanteth
not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise.
- Stay away from Liars – Proverbs
14:5 says 5A faithful witness will not lie: but a false witness will
utter lies. – These people just make up stuff. Sometimes these people make
up lies simply to make themselves look good.
- Stay away from the angry man – Proverbs 15:18 says 18A wrathful man stirreth up strife: but
he that is slow to anger appeaseth strife. – These are the people that
make you nervous to go out with them. They are always ready to fight. You
have to tiptoe around this type which is unhealthy, because it is a fear
based relationship. Any fear based relationship is unhealthy.
- Stay away from the lazy people- Proverbs 10:5 says 5He that gathereth in summer is a wise son:
but he that sleepeth in harvest is a son that causeth shame. – These are
people that just sit around trifling and have no regard for deadlines or schedules.
This laziness is a spirit and it
is contagious. Ex-”I am going to clean my house”.
Second Person: “I’m just going to chill”. Before long, you come over and
hang out with them and you end up doing what they do.
- Stay away from Drunkards- We all have people who drink, but this type
of person loses control every time
they drink. We will always be in an unhealthy relationship with this
person, because we never know who is going to show up. These people put us in jeopardy, because
we don’t know what they will do or say.
away from fools –Psalm 14:1
says 1The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt,
they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.- Fools are
For some of us, this list names just about
everyone we know.
Types of friends
- The company that we will keep can have an adverse affect on us. 1 Corinthians 15:43 says 43It is
sown in dishonour; it is raised in glory: it is sown in weakness; it is
raised in power: – This means we need to be strategic about who we will
allow to be our friends.
- Friendship is really a matter of trust.
- Types of friends:
- Acquaintances – These are people that we know by
name, we talk to them when then opportunity arises, but our interaction
is very limited. We don’t go out of our way to talk to them, but when we
encounter them, we speak. Some
people are only meant to be acquaintances in your life. These are also
referred to as associates.
- Friends-These are people whom we voluntarily
negotiated a personal relationship with. These are people that we look to
have similar values, beliefs, attitudes, and values. This is something we
intentionally invest into.
- We expect them to be positive- We want to
be able to enjoy their company.
- They must be assuring- In other words, we
trust each other.
- We share openness – We share our feelings with each other
Intimate Friendships (Your inner circle)
- These are people that have another level of trust and commitment
with you. These are people that you confide in. You ought not to feel guilty about
having this, because Jesus even had an inner
- These are people that you will have very few of in a lifetime. In
fact if you get 3 in a lifetime, you are doing well. Jesus only had 3 (Peter, James, and
John) in his inner circle.
- There are 3 types of Christian
- Mentor Friendship – These are relationships whereby we teach,
we council, we disciple, and we are the ones who literally pour into
other people. Our role in this person’s life is hierarchal. We understand as a mentor that there is something
that God wants us to pour into someone. Some friendships will be this
way. There is something in you that God wants you to impart into the other person.
- Mentee Friendship – You are the person that is receiving. Now
you are in a position where you know God has put you into a person’s life
to get everything out of them you can as it relates to wisdom.
- Mutual Friendships – Not
based on mentoring. They are situations where two individuals are aligned
spiritually and emotionally and intellectually. They recognize the
relationship is not unilateral or one way. Instead it flows both ways. One of the biggest
frustrations you can have is when you are in a unilateral friendship. By this we mean that we pour out and
no one pours back into us. We have the understanding that this thing
requires mutual investment.
- Try this. Take the top 10 people that you
check on in a month and don’t check on them for two weeks and see who
checks on you. Your feelings will really be hurt by these results. This
will give you an indication of what relationships you are in. Ex- Bishop explains that some of
the closest relationships that he is in, he doesn’t call them every day.
Though he doesn’t call them every day, but when they talk, they catch up.
They pick up where they left off.
Anyone that is real needy won’t understand this. You can’t be a needy
person in a relationship. If you are, this might indicate that you are
using the relationship for something that God didn’t intend. The
motivation by which you are in this relationship can be considered
The difference between friends and associates
- Do you know the difference between friends and associates?
- Should your mate be your friend first?
- Do you know how to make and keep a good friend?
- If you are young, should parents choose your friends?
- Are you with friends right now for a good reason?
- Are you friend worthy?
5 characteristics of a healthy friendship
- Friends love sacrificially- John
15:13 says 13Greater
love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. –
Jesus was our example. He loved sacrificially, selflessly, and he
demonstrated his love by laying down his life on the cross. If you choose
to be in a friendship, you must understand that part of your investment is
to give selflessly and sacrificially
to the friendship without expectation.
- Friends give without expecting in return
– The Lord gave to us without expecting. He said he would love us until we
learned how to love him back. His love is not contingent on how we love
him. As a result, we have to realize that our contribution to the
friendship must be selfless. It
doesn’t always revolve around us. We might have to sacrifice things for
the sake of the friendship. Ex- Sometimes
on Saturday, while putting the icing on the sermon (though it is done way
before Saturday), a friend may call in need and Bishop is forced to make a
decision. Sometimes, he has to sacrifice and stay up a little longer for
the sake of the friend, because the friend needs you. What are you willing to sacrifice for
the friendship? Philippians 2:3 says 3Let
nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let
each esteem other better than themselves. – Consider the other
person. Value your friends’ needs
above your own. If you are the only
one sacrificing, this is not a healthy Christian Friendship.
- Friends love unconditionally –Proverbs
17:17 says 17A
friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. –
A true friend is not a person that just loves me when I am mountain or
when all is well in my life. A true friend will love us when we are at rock bottom too. We can’t tell who our real friend is
when we got a lot of money, because rats come out when there is a lot of cheese around. If you want to know who your real
friends are, hit rock bottom or lose your job. Let stuff happen and see
how they respond. When things go bad, you will find out who your friends
really are, because they will love you unconditionally. Some of us throw people away when people
mess up, because we have a difficult time accepting ourselves. Ex
– There is a probably a psychological construct for this, when a
person has a person conversation with
themselves about themselves. For
example we might say, “What is wrong with me” and no one is in the house
but you. What is going on is you are making yourself sick and you are
telling yourself about. The way you love yourself, is the same way which
you have to love your friend, because we love our neighbor as our self. God sends people into our lives, prior
to adversity without us being aware why they are there. The truth is, they
were born for the adversity that we are about to go through. We have a tendency to push these people
away, because we don’t understand why they are there. They might not fit the pedigree that your
other friends have, but these are the people that truly pray for you. It is this person born for your
adversity that will stay and pray for you while everyone else goes the
- Friends trust completely –Proverbs
18:24: says 24A
man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend
that sticketh closer than a brother. – Trust is something that has
to be earned. It takes time to come to place of trust. Ex- Bishop explains that when he was in his early twenties, he used to
give everyone he met a 100%.
And then he would allow their actions to deduct from that 100%. He had
expectations of 100% on people and he would end up hurt, because of unmet expectations. Now he starts
everyone a 0% and allows them to earn the expectation. This avoids disappointment
from unmet expectation. Trust has to be earned. As relationship grows, confidence is added. Can you be
trusted? What do you do with Juicy information? Some of us have a big
mouth and tell everything we know.
- Keep healthy boundaries – 1 Corinthians 13:4
says 4Charity suffereth long, and
is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed
up, – Boundaries are so important. If you are not careful, people
can break boundaries. Friends can
come between spouse, children. You can be in the mall and people who know
you can come up to you and speak to you while acting like your spouse is
invisible. Another example is people calling your house late at night. You have to have
certain boundaries. Space is a good sign for a healthy relationship. Ex-
Bishop explains that when he was young, he used to go out in the
country to his Granma’s house. There was a fence with a gate, a big front
yard, a porch, a screen door, and a door. Some friends would come to gate
and Grandma would say go where they are at. He knew that it was implied
not to open the gate. Some people would come and she would say come on in
and then tell them to go to field and play. She didn’t want them on the
porch. There were others that she allowed to sit on the porch with us.
There were others that were like family that were allowed in and out of
the house and they were allowed to eat with them. This is a revelation of
how we should appropriate friends in our life. Some people should be allowed
just outside the gate. Jesus had
3 into the garden with him while he prayed and he left 8 at the gate. We
have a problem of letting gate people in
the house. Boundaries are
important. We must have boundaries.
Don’t let people violate your boundaries. Set boundaries for your
- Friends give mutual edifications – Proverbs
27:6 says 6Faithful
are the wounds of a friend; but the kisses of an enemy are deceitful. –
If a friend tells you something that cuts you, you can trust that, because
it is real stuff. We need people in our life that can keep it 100, even if
it makes us bleed. How do we tell people something they don’t want to
hear? We have to say something
like, “I realize that what I have to say, may jeopardize our relationship,
but I am so committed to our relationship that I am willing to put our
relationship in jeopardy even if you might talk to me for month… ” It is
important that we be who we said we were going to be in their life. We are
willing to accept any response back given, but we must remain responsible
and be who I said I was going to be in this relationship. If your friend
is wearing something that they shouldn’t wear, we should be able to tell
them this out of love. There are people that told us things that stung and
mad us upset, but we are glad that they told us. We rather someone tell us the truth now
and be upset, than being hurt later and saying “you should have told me.”
Note: One thing we need to know is we are breaking boundaries on Facebook
and Twitter. We put too much of our personal information out there, then we
wonder why people look at s like we are crazy. You got to be careful. It’s
- Write down 3 things that you know you bring
to friendships. This is not things money can buy. These are things money
can’t buy. For example, “ I bring … because I am loyal or I am a good
- Write down 3 things people take for
granted about you when they are in Friendship with you.
- Next week we will discuss this assignment
and how it is relative. Have a blessed day.