What Does it Mean to be a Friend?

friendTITLE: What Does it Mean to be a Friend?

SUBJECT: Friendship

PROPOSITION: In this lesson, we will look at some Bible principles on friendship: 1) We were made for friendship, 2) Friendship is founded on the good, 3) Friends are Independent, 4) Friendship is Generous.

OBJECTIVE: To encourage us to be better friends by understanding the Bible’s teaching.


1. Read: Proverbs 17:17

2. About the Text:

1) “A friend loves at all times, And a brother is born for adversity.”

2) Friendship doesn’t depend upon circumstances, but is a decision.

3) Friendship persists through the good times and the bad.

4) This doesn’t mean that friendship can’t be broken, but it should take a lot to break it.

5) How can we be better friends to one another as Christians and to those in the world?

3. Ref. to S, T, P, O, and A.

DISCUSSION: To be a friend means understanding that friendship is . . .

I.   Part of God’s Creation.

1. God created humanity for friendship.

1) Genesis 2:18 – “And the Lord God said, ‘It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him a helper comparable to him.’”

2) “God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord” (1 Corinthians 1:9).

2. Jesus Christ redeemed us for friendship.

1) “You are My friends if you do whatever I command you” (John 15:14).

2) “No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you” (John 15:15).

3. The church exists for friendship.

1) “For as the body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one body, being many, are one body, so also is Christ” (1 Cor.12:12).

2) “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:26-28).

II.  Founded on the Good.

1. True friendship depends upon treating one another right.

1) “He who loves purity of heart And has grace on his lips, The king will be his friend” (Proverbs 22:11).

2) “To him who is afflicted, kindness should be shown by his friend, Even though he forsakes the fear of the Almighty” (Job.6:14).

2. Who sets the standard of right and wrong? God does.

1) Psalm 119:63 – “I am a companion of all who fear You, And of those who keep Your precepts.”

2) “You love righteousness and hate wickedness; Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You With the oil of gladness more than Your companions” (Psalm 45:7).

3. Friendship is broken when we do wrong to one another.

1) “Be not deceived: Evil companionships corrupt good morals” (1 Cor.15:33 ASV).

2) The righteous should choose his friends carefully, For the way of the wicked leads them astray.” (Proverbs 12:26).

III. Independent.

1. True friendship doesn’t depend upon wavering circumstances.

1) “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity” (Proverbs 17:17).

2) “Wealth makes many friends, But the poor is separated from his friend” (Prov.19:4).

2. True friendship challenges to improve.

1) “As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend” (Proverbs 27:17).

2) “Ointment and perfume delight the heart, And the sweetness of a man’s friend gives delight by hearty counsel” (Prov.27:9).

3. True friendship will rebuke and chasten.

1) “As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent” (Rev.3:19).

2) “…Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you” (Proverbs 9:8).

IV.  Generous.

1. God gives to his friends generously.

1) “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3).

2) “…in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Col.2:3).

2. Friendship means acting friendly to others in a generous way.

1) “A man who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24).

2) “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35).

3. We help our friends when they are in need.

1) “And I urge you also, true companion, help these women who labored with me in the gospel, with Clement also, and the rest of my fellow workers, whose names are in the Book of Life” (Phil.4:3).

2) “Moreover, brethren, we make known to you the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia: that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded in the riches of their liberality” (2 Cor.8:1-2).


1. To be a friend means understanding that friendship is . . .

1) Part of God’s Creation.

2) Founded on the Good.

3) Independent.

4) Generous.

2. Invitation