What does it feel like to be rejected? Most of us have been left out of a group or event at some stage or another. It doesn't feel nice. In fact it can feel quite horrible! There are times when we might feel justified to exclude someone. Not that I am suggesting that it's a good thing to do but if someone has been mean, unkind, thoughtless or just plain annoying you might be tempted to exclude them from your circle of friends.
The Lord Jesus Christ was literally the best friend to have. Friends are special and good friends are rare! The Bible advises that if a person wants to have friends then they must 'show themselves friendly,' Proverbs 18:24. This same proverb also states 'there is a friend that sticks closer than a brother'. Personally I think that this is an indirect reference to Jesus Christ. If it's not speaking about him personally it definitely defines his character. Family relationships should be the closest of relationships. We say 'blood is thicker than water'. So this proverb is saying there is a person who can have an even closer relationship to you than a family one. The only person that I know that this is true about is the Lord Jesus Christ.
When living on earth, the Bible describes the Lord Jesus as being the friend of publicans and sinners, Matthew 11:19. In the days in which Jesus lived on earth the term 'publicans and sinners' described the lowest of the low in society. Isn't it amazing that the Son of God, Jesus, was described as the friend of this group of people. That is so encouraging! If his interest extended to the lowest strata of society then his love and grace can reach all of mankind. I was visiting in two areas of London today. Abbey Wood and Bexley Heath. In one area the people think that they are the best of people; in the other, well, they know life is tough and times can be hard and they haven't had it great. But do you know God and his Son, make no distinctions - they love all people equally.
One of the most famous verses in the Bible is John 3:16. It states 'For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him, should not perish but have everlasting life,' John 3:16.
Notice God loved - the world
Notice God love for His Son - he is the only begotten (meaning unique and unmatched)
Notice that God gave - His only begotten Son, that is to the death of the cross to pay for our sins.
How will you respond?
The options are: you (the word whosoever is used because no one is excluded) can entrust your eternal destiny to Jesus Christ. Please do not ignore him but depend on him for salvation!
The consequences - salvation or damnation.
There are only two destinations in the next life - Heaven or Hell.
You can either confess your sin to God and receive Christ as your Lord and Saviour and end up in heaven....
You can deny it or delay it and end up in hell.
Here is the verse again - 'For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him, should not perish but have everlasting life,' John 3:16.
I started by asking if you had ever been rejected or knew what it felt like. My reason for asking is that Jesus Christ was despised and rejected of men. They accused him falsely, executed him illegally nailing him to a tree. I thank God that he 'once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God,' 1 Peter 3:18.
He is the friend that sticks closer than a brother!
He is the one who died for us even when we were his enemies.
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