Friend? by Kenneth C. Kroohs

FRIEND???
Kenneth Kroohs
Acts 11:19-30; Ps. 33:1-8 & 18-22; I John 4:7-21; John 15:9-17
SIXTH SUNDAY of EASTER
May 28, 2000

This week my mind went in some unusual directions as I read the Scripture passages. Surprised even me! The juxtaposition of the Scripture lessons and news reports intrigued me.

Somewhere I saw still another news report about people wanting to post the Ten Commandments in schools and court rooms. Then I read what Jesus said. Suddenly part of the reason for posting the Ten Commandments became clear. I am not suggesting this is everyone's reason or even the primary reason but I do suspect it is part of the reason -- the Ten Commandments are easy!! Look at them.

OK, the one about worshiping the God Yahweh before all other gods is fairly difficult to follow, but the others are relatively easy to understand. What is hard about "thou shall not kill" -- at least if we ignore war and capital punishment for a moment. Or "thou shall not commit adultery"? Or, "thou shall not steal"?

Actually all of them raise some questions if we are honest ... is cheating on income tax a form of stealing?? ... but they are essentially straight forward and easy to understand. These are commandments - rules. We call Jesus our Lord .. our Master ... Lords and Masters make rules and the servants, or slaves, obey the rules. Actually a fairly easy to understand and follow life style. None of the confusion, complexity, and constant change that we suffer through. .... This is simple: do what you are told -- no thinking involved.

Then Jesus -- as Jesus often does -- then Jesus makes things more difficult. Jesus says, "I no longer call you servants or slaves, but friends." .. ahhhhhh .... That is a whole lot less easy to understand or follow. Notice, Jesus is still our Lord and Savior. That has not changed. What changed is that our role expands beyond a simple obeyer of rules to a friend.

Think for a moment about a very good friend. Whether ...


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