“The Measure of a Good Friend” Sermon Outline 04/26/09

The Measure of a Good Friend by Richard Daughtridge
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Ever felt betrayed by someone?

Being betrayed by a friend is the emptiest of feelings. All trust seems to cave in around you. I’ve often wondered how Jesus must have felt as Judas kissed him. I believe that Judas had a choice, even though the betrayal was predicted. Heartbreak and betrayal are inevitable in all our lives. It can come as a result of bad choices, selfish pride, or even innocent misunderstandings.

The Bible gives us guidelines to help us not only recover from such conflicts but it offers advice to maintain relationships, preventing such hurt. We can enjoy friendships that can last a lifetime.

Though choices that others make are a factor in the outcome, still God’s Word gives us insight on our responses and preparedness. The Bibles says in Hebrews chapter twelve to ” Follow peace with all men”

I realize we can’t always change others, but we can always work on our own check list to be better friends.

How can we be better friends?

We all at times need to work on our friendship skills and guard the treasures found in these relationships.

How do we guard such treasures and why are friends so important?
I believe that, “0ur success in life is built one friendship at a time.”

We’ll begin with the importance of friends and then look at eleven points to consider in evaluating our own personal friendship skills.

Importance of Friends.

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 (NIV) Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up! Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not easily broken.

“A real friend is one who walks in when the rest of the world walks out.” (Unknown)

– Irish Blessing “May there always be work for your hands to do, may your purse always hold a coin or two. May the sun always shine on your windowpane, may a rainbow be certain to follow each rain. May the hand of a friend always be near you, may God fill your heart with gladness to cheer you.”

Remember, as we go through this list, we are not evaluating our friends, but rather our own friendship skills.

1. A good friend will pray for you.

Philip. 1:3-4 I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, [4] Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy,

2. A good friend will encourage you.

“A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart, and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.” Quote by Donna Roberts

3. A good friend will praise you.

How good are you at passing out compliments?

Philip. 2:3 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

4. A good friend will not judge you. (Remember, the more you know about a person the more likely you are to judge them.)

An old Chinese proverb once said, “Do not use a hatchet to remove a fly from your friend’s forehead.”

5. A good friend will listen to you.

Proverbs 27:17 Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.

6. A good friend will tell you the truth.

Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.

7. A good friend will defend you.

Remember: Defending someone you love can never be accomplished by hiding or covering the truth. Truth is the foundation on which healing is built.

Denial and cover up create the quick sand that destroys restoration and healing.

We must ,however, use caution as truth must be applied with grace and forgiveness. Injustice can be quickly erased as God changes our heart while remembering the example of Christ’s cross.

Christ, a few moments after he was spat on, died to forgive the one who spat on him. He died for the laughing insulters which had a few minutes before placed a crown of thorns on his head. In reality, every injustice was nailed to that cross including the ones in our lives. Thus, we can forgive anything and love can erase any injustice as we appropriate His brutal death.

Such forgiveness and appropriation can only be applied as we truthfully acknowledge our weaknesses. It is through such humble acknowledgment that we can find help.

James 5:16 Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

Ephes. 4:15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

8. A good friend is unselfish.

Philip. 2:4 Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.

1 Samuel 20:42 And Jonathan said to David, Go in peace, forasmuch as we have sworn both of us in the name of the Lord, saying, The Lord be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed for ever. And he arose and departed: and Jonathan went into the city.

9. A good friend will protect you.

10. A good friend will grieve with you.

11. A good friend will be an example for you to follow.
Philip. 4:9 Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.

Proverbs 17:17 “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.”

Chuck Swindoll told a story about an old marine buddy who found Christ. He said, “A number of months ago, I ran into this fellow, and after we’d talked awhile, he put his hand on my shoulder and said, ’You know, Chuck, the only thing I still miss is that old fellowship I used to have with all the guys down at the tavern. I remember how we used to sit around and let our hair down. I can’t find anything like that for Christians. I no longer have a place to admit my faults and talk about my battles — where somebody won’t preach at me and frown and quote me a verse.”

Let’s pick our friends up when they fall.

Why?

a. Eventually you will fall and need someone to pick you up.

b. Your children are watching your example.

c. Because we’ve been taught by the best friend that ever lived, Jesus Christ.

John 15:12-15 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. [15] 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.

One Response to ““The Measure of a Good Friend” Sermon Outline 04/26/09”

  1. EXCELLENT!! Wonderful message, Richard. I especially found comfort in the seventh item. Thank you for standing up for me last year. Hard to believe how much time has now passed… and truly what a blessing it has become to have been “plucked” from the flock and placed among another. Hallelujah!

    Take care, my friend. Blessings…

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