Just like the shoes you wear for different occasions, many of you have friends you think you can wear to different occasions. Every friend you have is not for every place, situation or circumstance. You have to figure out which friends to put on for different occasions. Some friends will only be with you when things are good, but won’t be able to keep with you when seasons change. What friends do you have in you life that are prepared to travel with you for the long distance? There are some people in your life who only show up when you do well. Who are the people in your life who cannot celebrate with you, but only share in sorrow? Who are the friends in your administration? What kind of friend are you to yourself? Knowing this is going to help you reexamine your friendship and relationships
In the backdrop of Luke 10:30-37, Jesus is talking to a lawyer who is asking the question: “Who is my neighbor?” Jesus responds by giving the analogy of the Good Samaritan.
There are three different dimensions of friendship
- Those who need a friend
- Those who could have been a friend
- Those who will be a friend when a need arrives
Jerusalem is a place where the Ark of the Covenant rested, a place where all the Jews (even unto this day) consider as their Mecca, or headquarters for worship. Notice that the man is leaving the holy place (Jerusalem) going to Jericho. Jericho is the place where that was filled with witchcraft, where people worshipped false gods. He leaves the place of worship, and goes into a place of debauchery and recklessness.
I want to suggest that the thieves picked him out because God allowed him to be picked out and stripped. Sometimes when you are on the wrong road, God will send a distraction. The thief left him half dead. Satan does not have the authority or the ability to kill you without God’s permission.
The second dimension of friends are those who bypassed him and missed the opportunity to become his friend. Some people have what you need, but they don’t have what it takes to become your friend. You can never be friends, wholeheartedly, with somebody selfish.
The third dimension of friendship is with those who are friends when the need arrives (The Good Samaritan). Sometimes it takes a crisis for you to find out who Christ is; your best friend is not who you talk to everyday, but the one who will step up in a crisis without you having to ask.
The first two that passed by are described by their occupation: one was a Levite and the other was a priest. We are not given the occupation of the third one, only his ethnicity. When it is that you have gone through enough bad relationships, you develop the ability to get passed titles because you are no longer impressed by what people do.
There are some friends who you need to run from because they are not on your pace. They will not be able to handle you when life gets cold. There are other friends who are not prepared to travel with you because they like life where they are and are intimidated when they see you growing. You need friendship with somebody who recognizes you are different. In the Old Testament, God gave judgment on nations, tribes and families, but in the New Testament, Jesus began to save individuals. Jesus then became my personal savior, thus my friend. He is the example of what true friendship is. The people you call friends should measure up to this friendship. Who is in your cabinet? What position have you placed Jesus in? He is a friend who sticks closer than any brother. What type of friend are you?