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Who Do you think you Are Part 2?

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Becoming a Friend of God

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A Friend of God
On April 30th I began a new series on knowing your identity.
On April 30th I began a new series on knowing your identity.
It is imperative to know your proper identity, otherwise you will never be able to walk in everything God has intended for you.
I made the suggestion there there a various ways we can approach our relationship with God
I believe the common approach is we start off is as a slave.
The Bible tells us We were slaves to sin and then became slaves to righteousness.
This is an important step, where the most important thing to learn is obedience
We need to learn to DO WHAT GOD TELLS US.
However we must never stay in the slave mode, for God has much greater desires for us
God sees us differntly, He does not see us as slaves, but knows its a process we must transition through
I believe the next level in our relationship we attain is Friendship with God
Jesus told his disciples
Top 10 reasons why you are a son& daughters of God first and foremost
John 15:14–15 NASB95
“You are My friends if you do what I command you. “No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.
John 15:14
John 15:15 NASB95
“No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I have heard from My Father I have made known to you.
1 The Holy Spirit says so. “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father’” (Rms 8:15).
This verse shows us the progression of slave to Friend
It also tells us how this transition is made
“for the slave does not know what his master is doing”
So to transition from slave to friend must include knowledge of God’s intentions
as a slave you do what your told. You don’t need to know why, you Just do it!
But a friend knows the Heart of God, You see what God is doing, and you join in without Him telling you what to do
You know what needs to be done
YOU KNOW WHAT GOD WANTS YOU TO DO
And because you know the heart of God You don’t always have to be told what to do in every situation.
Your heart is transformed into His heart, and then you act on it
Your conversation also changes, It less do what your told, and more this is who I am,
You begin to understand God reasons, because your know His Heart
and the Question Why God? becomes less and less important
There are people in the Bible Who were called a friend of God
Abraham, Moses, Lazarus, the Disciples...
The one I’d like to focus on today is Moses
Exodus 33:11 NASB95
Thus the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, just as a man speaks to his friend. When Moses returned to the camp, his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, would not depart from the tent.
Imagine that for a moment
Moses spoke with God face to face,
this seldom happened since the Garden of Eden when Adam & Eve walked and talked with God in the garden,
Although Abraham conversed with the “Angel of the Lord” , and many people believe that title belongs to the pre-incarnate Christ.
The problems theologians have, is with this is the verses in the next paragraph
Exodus 33:18–20 NASB95
Then Moses said, “I pray You, show me Your glory!” And He said, “I Myself will make all My goodness pass before you, and will proclaim the name of the Lord before you; and I will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show compassion on whom I will show compassion.” But He said, “You cannot see My face, for no man can see Me and live!”
Exodus 33:11 NASB95
Thus the Lord used to speak to Moses face to face, just as a man speaks to his friend. When Moses returned to the camp, his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, would not depart from the tent.
Ex 33:18-20
vs 11 Moses met with God “Face to Face”
,
vs 20 God tells Moses “you cannot see My Face, for no man can see Me and Live.
I’ll let you chew on that for awhile
I’ll let you chew on that for awhile
belief God is so Holy No one can look upon Him and live
The Hebrew word for “friend” used here is the word REA.
This word suggests intimacy, companionship, and reciprocal relationship.
says this of Moses,
I speak with him directly, openly, and not in riddles; he sees the form of the Lord
Throughout the life of Moses we see over and over again, this open conversation with God.  
It is important to note, that this level of relationship/friendship requires intentionality and regular communication.  
Moses did not only speak to God once in a while, or only when he needed something, but as a friend, he maintained regular and open communication with God.
When Moses is forced to flee Egypt he ends up in Midian at the home of the priest of Midian, Jethro (to become his father-in-law).  
The family name of Jethro is, Reuel ().  
In Hebrew the name Reuel means, “friend of God”.  
The years spent working for Jethro (priest of Midian) were formative to Moses understanding of who God is.  
Moses was able to do what he was called to only after his time spent learning who God is, and establishing this friend relationship. 
I find it interesting that the man who would be known as a friend of God, Moses, spent more than 40 years learning of God at the feet of a man whose name is, “friend of God”, Reuel.  
This has a lot to say about the people we allow to influence our lives.
If we back up 1 chapter in Exodus we see the results of what a friend of God is capable of
To set the stage
Moses was up on the Mount Sinai receiving the 10 commandments
He goes up at the end of chp 24, and God lays everything out for him
We have 7 chapters of God giving Moses all the instructions the people of Israel are to follow
When we get to chp 32 and the people are thinking Moses is not coming back
When we get to chp 32 and the people are thinking Moses is not coming back
They ask Aaron to make them some gods, and he does.
Takes the people’s gold melts it down and according to Aaron the golden cafes just appear “poof”
Exodus 32:7–14 NASB95
Then the Lord spoke to Moses, “Go down at once, for your people, whom you brought up from the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves. “They have quickly turned aside from the way which I commanded them. They have made for themselves a molten calf, and have worshiped it and have sacrificed to it and said, ‘This is your god, O Israel, who brought you up from the land of Egypt!’ ” The Lord said to Moses, “I have seen this people, and behold, they are an obstinate people. “Now then let Me alone, that My anger may burn against them and that I may destroy them; and I will make of you a great nation.” Then Moses entreated the Lord his God, and said, “O Lord, why does Your anger burn against Your people whom You have brought out from the land of Egypt with great power and with a mighty hand? “Why should the Egyptians speak, saying, ‘With evil intent He brought them out to kill them in the mountains and to destroy them from the face of the earth’? Turn from Your burning anger and change Your mind about doing harm to Your people. “Remember Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, Your servants to whom You swore by Yourself, and said to them, ‘I will multiply your descendants as the stars of the heavens, and all this land of which I have spoken I will give to your descendants, and they shall inherit it forever.’ ” So the Lord changed His mind about the harm which He said He would do to His people.
That’s what a friend of God can do
Exodus 32:7-14
A friend of God can change the course of a Nation,
Convince God to change His mind.
Or did he?
Something else to think about.
The disciples Who Jesus called His friends, changed the entire world

How to be a Friend of God

1. Be a Friend of God by Taking Time to Listen to Him

Jesus said, ‘I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.’ ()
Amazing—Jesus wants to let you know what He is up to, and what His Father’s plans are!
When you value God as a friend, you place worth on His thoughts, and what is on His heart. When He wants to talk, you are ready and listening.
Abraham took time to listen to God’s intentions—including things that were uncomfortable to talk about.
In , God says “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do?” ()
He is about to pass judgment on two cities, but He gives Abraham the opportunity to discuss it with Him first.
Moses also listened as God shared His thoughts and plans, along with His frustrations.
These encounters were valuable to God and He has recorded them in Scripture because He wants you to know about them. Friends spend time together.
These encounters were valuable to God and He has recorded them in Scripture because He wants you to know about them. Friends spend time together.
As a friend of God, you care for God and love Him as a Person, not just for what He can do for you.
You can be someone with whom God can entrust His desires, His grievances and His intentions.
You can listen as He shares what causes Him pain and what brings Him joy.

2. Be a Friend of God by Having Courageous Conversations

Friends are open and honest with each other.
There is freedom in their relationship; they have open and courageous conversations that strengthen their friendship.
One of the biggest differences between a slave and a Friend is the prayer life
A slave is “please God…I need this, then we give a list of the reason why we should get it.
Its almost like we are trying to convince God
A Friend knows the will of God and conversation is more like an agreement on what is going to be done.
Its not a matter of convincing God, but rather entering into agreement
Friends go beneath the surface, beyond exchanging pleasantries, to ‘deep and meaningful’ conversations.
A remarkable thing about Abraham and Moses is that the Bible records lengthy conversations between them and God.
Conversations where critical issues are at stake.
When God announces His plans for Abraham’s destiny, Abraham believes, but he also asks God questions.
In , you can read this frank and open conversation.
As a friend of God, you esteem Him with your honesty.
When He says ‘This is what I want to do with and through you’, take the conversation deeper.
Ask questions.
It’s not a sign of unbelief, it’s a part of your friendship with God.
You are giving Him an opportunity to disclose more to you.
When God planned to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah, the Angel of the Lord paused to explain to Abraham what was going on, and why. ()
Abraham had the boldness to question God, to challenge His intentions, and to ask for mercy on behalf of the righteous.
In our text Moses also had a courageous conversation, in .
God was threatening to withdraw His Presence from Israel.
Did Moses change God’s mind? Or—did God need an intercessor right at that time, so that the outcome He intended all along could be fully brought about?
“I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one.” ()
God is seeking friends who are willing to have honest conversations with Him and who will be champions for the people and issues that are on His heart.

3. Be a Friend of God Through your Obedience

‘By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going.’ ()
Friendship is costly. Friends make sacrifices for one another.
Jesus said, ‘Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command.’ ()
What was the context of James’ reference to Abraham’s friendship with God?
It was his obedience to God in the matter of sacrificing Isaac. ()
Abraham not only listened to God’s intentions, he demonstrated faith and followed through in obedience.
Listen to God, but don’t stop there.
The true test of your friendship with God is what you do when you walk away from that conversation.
Conclusion
Conclusion
As I mentioned a few weeks back, I feel the majority of Christians today view God as Master.
They operate with a slave mentality. Few are at the level of Friendship that God desires
obeying, but at a very basic level.
doing the bare minimum to keep the relationship going
God desires us to become friends, this can only happen by knowing is heart, and acting on it.
It my desire that each and everyone of you begins to know and operate in what it means to be a Friend of God.
Not just lip service
Not just singing the song “I am a Friend of God”
But truly knowing what it means to be a friend of God.
This is when amazing things will begin to happen in the church. Not just through a few people now and then
But through every person all the time.
As exciting as that sounds, there is still greater things in our relationship.
For not only are we called friends, We are also called sons and daughters.
Chew on that for a while.
Prayer
Teach us how to become your friend!
Top 10 reason you are a Child of God
1 The Holy Spirit says so. “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father’” (Rms 8:15).
1 The Holy Spirit says so. “For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, ‘Abba, Father’” (Rms 8:15).
2 Paul thought no. 1 above was such an important truth that he said it twice.
“God sent the Spirit of his Son into our lives crying out, ‘Papa! Father!’” (, MSG).
3 The Bible says so – in many places (see , Rms 8:14, , for starters).
Galatians 3:26 NASB95
For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus.
3 The Bible says so – in many places (see , Rms 8:14, , for starters).
4 The Old Testament prophets longed for the day when God’s people would be called “sons of God” ().
4 The Old Testament prophets longed for the day when God’s people would be called “sons of God” ().
10 [a]“Yet the time will come when Israel’s people will be like the sands of the seashore—too many to count! Then, at the place where they were told, ‘You are not my people,’ it will be said, ‘You are children of the living God.’
They thought it applied to the Jews, but Paul says it includes “even us whom He also called” (Rms 9:23).
Jesus came to reveal the Father ().
This is what makes the new covenant new. Sonship – not servanthood, not friendship – is the pinnacle of redemption.
Not even Adam and Eve were identified as sons! Because of Jesus we have come closer to God than when we started out in the Garden. How awesome is that?!
5 We are to be servant-hearted, not servant-minded.
Someone with an orphan spirit readily identifies themselves as a servant of God.
It sounds noble, but it insults the cross and the Spirit of grace.
Servants work for wages but we live under grace and there are no wages under grace.
Sons are shareholders, not employees.
We don’t work because we have to, but because we are wholly invested in the success of the family-business.
6 A servant doesn’t know his master’s will, has to be told what to do, and then relates to God on the basis of what he does.
If he does good, he thinks God loves him more.
How sad, how utterly tragic to be enslaved to such a lie.
A mature son is nothing like that.
He has the mind of Christ (),
is clothed with His righteousness (),
and relates on the basis of the Father’s love first shown to him ().
A servant waits on God. A son does what he sees His Father doing ().
7 Servants suffer from performance-anxiety.
Even friends may worry thinking they have to pound on doors in the middle of the night merely to borrow something ().
But sons need not worry, for our “heavenly Father knows we need all these things” ().
Our Father – not our master nor our friend – delights to give good gifts to those who ask Him ().
You’re not on the outside looking in.
You’re warm and secure in bed with your Papa (see ).
8 True, Abraham was a friend of God () and w
e are revealed to be friends when we do what Jesus says ().
This is a good thing and something to treasure. But sonship is better by far! Sons have “full rights” of access that friends lack ().
Sons have an expectation of intimacy that servants and friends do not enjoy.
My kids are with me 24/7
In contrast, I only see and enjoy my friends occasionally.
Wouldn’t you rather walk with God enjoying His presence continuously? As a son you have full rights to do so!
9 Sons are heirs.
I have an inheritance and it’s the entire planet (Rms 4:13).
All the cattle on all the hills and all the blessings of Abraham are ours, paid for with Jesus’ blood. Indeed, we are co-heirs with Christ ().
Our share is no less than Christ’s!
· (10) What will it take to fix this broken, poisoned planet? A revelation of the sons of God (Rms 8:19)!
In the garden God gave us a planet to keep.
We lost it, Jesus got it back, yet we still act like it belongs to the devil. It is OURS! “The earth he has given to man” ().
Jesus paid a high price to redeem this planet for us. Creation is not waiting for the church to rise up. Neither is creation waiting for God’s servants or His friends to rise up. Instead, creation waits for the mature sons of God to rise up and say with authority “this is my planet; hands off devil
10 If you’re still having trouble wrapping your head around this, look to Jesus. Did Jesus describe God as His (a) Master, (b) Friend, or (c) Father?
· He is your Father and my Father! Yes I serve Him and yes He is my closest friend. But service and friendship stem from my secure position as His adopted son. There’s nothing I enjoy more than being with Him, knowing Him, walking with Him and talking with Him. Every day with Him is an adventure!
· When you have a revelation of your sonship, it will change the way you pray. You will pray for the smallest things, because if it matters to you it matters to Him. But you will also ask Him for big things, because God has promised you the nations. You won’t hold back like a waiter or a friend – you’ll come running in to Papa knowing that He loves to give good gifts to His children.
· Paul prayed, and so do I…
· …that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparably great power for us who believe. ()
· I am accepted… I am God’s child. As a disciple, I am a friend of Jesus Christ. I have been justified. I am united with the Lord, and I am one with Him in spirit. I have been bought with a price and I belong to God. I am a member of Christ’s body. I have been chosen by God and adopted as His child. I have been redeemed and forgiven of all my sins. I am complete in Christ. I have direct access to the throne of grace through Jesus Christ.
· I am secure… I am free from condemnation. I am assured that God works for my good in all circumstances. I am free from any condemnation brought against me and I cannot be separated from the love of God. I have been established, anointed and sealed by God. I am hidden with Christ in God. I am confident that God will complete the good work He started in me. I am a citizen of heaven. I have not been given a spirit of fear but of power, love and a sound mind. I am born of God and the evil one cannot touch me.
· I am significant… I am a branch of Jesus Christ, the true vine, and a channel of His life. I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit. I am God’s temple. I am a minister of reconciliation for God. I am seated with Jesus Christ in the heavenly realm. I am God’s workmanship. I may approach God with freedom and confidence. I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.
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