Scripture Reading: John 15:12-17
“No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from My Father, I have made known to you.” (John 15:15)
The gospel is about a change in our status: “Once you were not a people, but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy” (I Peter 2:10). The gospel tells us that we have been rescued or saved: “For He has rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins” (Colossians 1:13-14). Do you see how our status was changed? Once we were not God’s people, but now we are. We were part of the domain of darkness, but now we are citizens of the kingdom of Christ and members of His family.
Jesus is speaking of this change of status in our verse today: “No longer do I call you servants…but I have called you friends.” It is hard to grasp what Jesus is saying to us. He is the Creator and Sustainer of the entire universe (Colossians 1:16,17). All authority in heaven and on earth is His (Matthew 28:18). Kings and rulers are required to do homage to Him (Psalm 2:10-12). He is coming again to judge mankind (Matthew 25:31ff). Yet, Jesus call us His friends!
Jesus is our Friend, our closest and best friend. He is the friend of sinners. He changes our status from servants to friends. He desires deep intimate fellowship with us. He delights in us and desires the best for us. He reveals to us what His Father has revealed to Him. He is a Friend who will never desert us or turn His back on us. He is there to help us, serve us, love us and defend us.
The words of the hymn written by J. Wilbur Chapman come to my mind:
“Jesus! What a friend of sinners! Jesus! Lover of my soul; Friends may fail me, foes assail me, He, my Savior, makes me whole. Hallelujah! What a Savior! Hallelujah! What a Friend! Saving, helping, keeping, loving, He is with me to the end.”
Lord Jesus, it is hard to imagine that you call me Your Friend. I am deeply humbled by such a thought. I know You want the best for me. You laid down your life for me. There is no greater love than this.
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