Why do I send out this type of Bible study? The answer is found in one verse of Scripture.
1 Corinthians 15:33 ESV (33) Do not be deceived: "Bad company ruins good morals."
SEPARATING OURSELVES FROM THE LOST AS NOT HAVING FRIENDSHIP:
In part six we will address those who are lost, unsaved, children of wrath, children of the enemy or any other name which the Bible identifies them. I have had people try to convince me that we are to have lost friends because our Lord Jesus did. However, our Lord Jesus Christ did not have lost friends, He had lost associates whereby He only spent time around in order to preach the Gospel. He did not have lost friends.
Let us be mindful of the fact that the people in the Gospels were under the same condition as those in the Old Testament. This means that people really were not saved like us until our Lord rose from the dead, glorified, and breathed the Holy Spirit on the disciples in John 20:22. That was when the believers first had the indwelling of the Person of the Holy Spirit. Up until that time people believed God and it was counted unto them or imputed to them righteousness.
The New Testament makes it clear that we have enemies and we are to love our enemies. What defines an enemy? We typically what to identify an enemy as someone who has harmed or wronged us in someway or is a national enemy to our way of freedom. But how does the Word of God define who our enemies are? Anyone who is an enemy to God, to our Lord Jesus Christ and to the cross is also to be our enemies. Well who are they? We know that Satan and the demons are our enemies. We know that the world and the world system is our enemy and hates us. We also know from Scriptures that lost people are our enemies and our Lord tells us that woe if they speak well of us.
Loving our enemies and doing good to those who hate us does not classify being friends, it is obeying the Word. You cannot have someone who is classified as an enemy to God, an enemy to Jesus and an enemy to the cross as a friend.
1. We are to love our enemies:
Luke 6:26-27 ESV "Woe to you, when all people speak well of you, for so their fathers did to the false prophets. (27) "But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,
Luke 6:34-35 ESV And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. (35) But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil.
Matthew 5:44 ESV But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,
2. We are to recognize who our enemies are:
Matthew 10:35-36 ESV For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. (36) And a person's enemies will be those of his own household.
Acts 13:10 ESV and said, "You son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, full of all deceit and villainy, will you not stop making crooked the straight paths of the Lord?
John 15:23 ESV Whoever hates me hates my Father also.
3. We need to know if we love the world and have friendship with the lost that it makes us an enemy to God:
James 4:4 ESV You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.
1 Peter 4:3-5 ESV For the time that is past suffices for doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. (4) With respect to this they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery, and they malign you; (5) but they will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.
4. We need to know that the lost hate us: Live passionately for God and you will see it manifested.
John 15:19 ESV If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.
John 17:14 ESV I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.
2 Timothy 3:12 ESV Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted,
Charles Morris. Founder and Senior Pastor of RSIM USA.