Most people desire to have a friend, to have many friends, and to have a best friend. All of these desires are natural and even can be healthy. However, having the wrong friends can be extremely dangerous and even up being your undoing. The Bible has a lot to say about friendships and the right kind of friends. However, let us first begin with the Bible principles that tell us who should NOT be our friend. We should be friendly to everyone, but not everyone should be our friend. There are some friends, that are actually your enemies.
Anyone who is not saved.
Jas 4:4 Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
Young person, you cannot be friends with those who are not saved. That is not to say you cannot be friendly to those who are unsaved: on the contrary, we are to show the world the love of Christ! Your friends should be ones that are saved who will influence you for right!
2 Co 6:14 Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?
Anyone who does not lead you closer to God.
Pr 13:20 He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.
Pr 9:6 Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.
Pr 1:7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction .
Friends should lead you closer to God not away from Him. Many will try to turn your heart from God, for that is the world’s goal. You need to find Godly friends who will encourage you to do what is right. This can be people in your church, school, and youth group. Choose people who challenge you and encourage you to do more for God.
Ps 119:63 I am a companion of all them that fear thee, and of them that keep thy precepts.
Anyone who would encourage you to do wrong.
Pr 1:10-15 My son, if sinners entice thee, consent thou not. If they say, Come with us, let us lay wait for blood, let us lurk privily for the innocent without cause: Let us swallow them up alive as the grave; and whole, as those that go down into the pit: We shall find all precious substance, we shall fill our houses with spoil: Cast in thy lot among us; let us all have one purse: My son, walk not thou in the way with them; refrain thy foot from their path:
Jonadab was a “friend” who encouraged Amnon to do wrong. Jonadab may not have been an evil young man, but because his close friend was an evil young man, Jonadab made a wicked decision that ruined his life, Jonathan, on the other hand was a friend who encouraged David to do right. We do not need anymore Amnons. We need some Jonathans.
Pr 28:7 Whoso keepeth the law is a wise son: but he that is a companion of riotous men shameth his father.
Anyone not going the same direction you should be going.
Am 3:3 Can two walk together, except they be agreed?
If you are going the right direction in pleasing and obeying God, you cannot walk with those who are not following God. Those that are not soulwinners, faithful church attenders, Bible readers, separated Christians, and do not do right, are all going the wrong direction than is right
However, try to find someone that is doing right, has a right spirit, and is going the right way. Ec 4:9 Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. 10 For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. But even if you find no one else, do right on your own. “I have decided to follow Jesus.”
Dr. Jack Bachman
Assistant Pastor | Parkside Baptist Church