Jesus is a Friend of Sinners
A stranger is a friend we have not yet met. Every day we
are in touch with people who may not know our Lord.
Every day we are praying for them and reaching out to them.
PRAYER: Lord we pray for our friends, asking You to open their hearts (Acts 16:14) and show them their sinful condition (John 16:8). Holy Spirit show them their need for a savior (John 15:26) and lead them to accept Jesus as their Lord (II Peter 3:9). I pray for a burden to reach those who do not know You (Isaiah 66:8) and I pray that You will send laborers into Your harvest (Matthew 9:37-38). In the name of Jesus we pray, amen.
I. Developing a friendship with those outside of our faith
A. Let them know you sincerely love them for Christ’s sake. (II Corinthians 5:14; I Thessalonians 3:12)
1. Go to them (I John 4:10)
2. Associating yourself with them and in many ways becoming like them as did our Lord. (II Corinthians 8:9; Philippians 2:5-7)
3. Go out of our way to serve these precious people.
(I Corinthians 9:19-23)
II. Win their Friendship and Confidence
A. Overlook all of their bad habits and sinful ways until we can speak into their life. “Jesus lifted up himself and saw none but the women and said unto her, ‘Woman where are your accusers, has no man condemned you?’ She said, ‘No man, Lord.’ And Jesus said, ‘Neither do I condemn you, go and sin no more.’” (John 8:1-12)
1. Should man condemn and judge another man? Yes or No
2. Jesus said, “Let Him who is without sin cast the first stone.” Could you honestly throw a stone? Could you honestly throw a rock at someone else? Yes or No
B. SEE and love people as Jesus does. “But when Jesus saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion, because they fainted and were scattered abroad as sheep having no shepherd.” (Matthew 9:36)
1. Jesus saw people as exhausted, abandoned by the Pharisees who classed common man as cursed. How should we see those outside of our faith?
2. What comes out of me when I have compassion?
III. Ways to get involved:
A. Try to find a common interest. Do some things they like to do: fishing, playing sports, sporting events, shopping, movies, eating lunch, invite them to your home to visit, bowling, camping, hiking, baking, games, etc. (Romans 12:13)
B. Let yourself get involved in their lives.
1. Listen to their interests.
2. Listen to their problems.
3. Speak into their life with the love of Christ and God’s word.
4. Each time you see them, silently say to yourself, “God loves this person.”
5. “Let brotherly love continue. Be not forgetful to entertain strangers for some have entertained angels unaware. Remember them that are in bonds, as bound with them and them which suffer adversity as being yourselves also in the body.” (Hebrews 13:1-3)
1. Do we really love all people? Yes or No
2. What are we doing to meet and to get to know people who are without Christ?
3. Like Jesus, are you a friend of sinners? Yes or No
4. Make a list of people you will pray for, invite to church and with whom you will develop a friendship.