The Special of the Day… From the Orange Moon Cafe…
"The Friend of Our Hearts"
"He came to Jesus, and said, Hail, master; and kissed Him. And Jesus said unto him, Friend, wherefore art thou come? Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took Him" (Matthew 26:49).
Even in the hour of betrayal, the Lord Jesus Christ referred to Judas as "Friend." This does not address what Judas was to the Lord, but who the Lord was to Judas. As a "thief," Judas joined himself to Christ not in loving devotion, but in self-centered hope of gain (John 12:6). Thus, the only friendship expressed between the two proceeded from the Savior to the sinner. "The Lord is good to all, and His tendermercies are over all His works" (Psalm 145:9).
We relate to God in response to His relating to us. "We love Him because He first loved us" (I John 4:19). God must create us before we even have possibility of knowing Him. He must then work in our wayward hearts before we believe to convince, convict, and convert us. After we believe, He must move within us by the Holy Spirit to maintain and enhance our devotion to Him. We play a role of response, of course, a free and vital determination to love as we are loved. "I will love Thee, o Lord my strength" (Psalm 18:1). We know, however, that we are ever the beneficiaries of the great Friend of our hearts, and one in whom we would have no interest if He did not lead and empower us to work out that which He works in (Philippians 2:12-13).
Judas never responded in faith and devotion to the One who had been a friend to him even in the hour of betrayal. Thus, the relationship between he and the Lord Jesus never became a true friendship. In God's purposes, Judas' role in the life of Christ became something far different and far darker. "He that dippeth his hand with Me in the dish, the same shall betray Me" (Matthew 26:23). God works His purposes out through both friend and foe, happily for the former, and horribly sad for the latter. For the born again believer, we do well to remember and respond to the truth that through Christ, the great Friend of our hearts led us to the glorious Father of our hearts. He ever works in us to make the relationship reciprocal. We must respond in faith, devotion, and the determination to avail ourselves of so great a gift, purchased by so high a cost. The Psalmist succinctly stated God's calling to our hearts, and our heart's response…
"When Thou saidst, Seek ye My face; my heart said unto Thee, Thy face, LORD, will I seek."
"A man that hath friends must show himself friendly."
Weekly Memory Verse
The LORD is nigh unto all them that call upon Him, to all that call upon Him in truth.