Daniel, in the Old Testament Book of Daniel, taught us a vital lesson about the value and the responsibility associated with having friends.  Daniel and his friends, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, went through many hard trials together.  They stood toe-to-toe with each other, honoring their God by refusing to eat the King’s delicacies because partaking of them was contrary to their beliefs.  God awarded Daniel, the spokesman for the group, a special gift of interpreting dreams which caused him to be elevated to the second-in-charge position over all of Babylon.  This promotion raised him far above his friends naturally, but Daniel remained true to his friends spiritually.  Daniel loved his friends and never forgot about them when he was promoted.  He actually petitioned the King on their behalf.  Dan. 2:48 tells us:

48 Then the king made Daniel a great man, and gave him many great gifts, and made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief of the governors over all the wise men of Babylon.

In verse 49 we are told:

49 Then Daniel requested of the king, and he set Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, over the affairs of the province of Babylon: but Daniel sat in the gate of the king.

Although Daniel was highly elevated, he petitioned the King for his friends, and they too were elevated.  Daniel was a friend indeed.

Proverbs 17:17 tells us that a friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.  Proverbs 18:24 says: A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. 

The Scriptures present many other notable lessons related to friends and friendship. However, one of the most important of all is found in John 15:13, which states, Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.  This Scripture highlights the fact that Jesus actually died for his friends, for you and I.  What is our responsibility to our friend, Jesus, in response to His sacrifice for us?  The answer is found in Luke 6:46 which states:

46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?

We are to believe in Jesus, honor Him as our Lord and Savior, then obey every Word that He spoke.

Let us pray:  Dear Heavenly Father, I thank You for the gift of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  He loved us in a way that no other friend could possibly love us.  My joy is knowing Jesus, not only as Lord and Savior but also as my true friend.  Make me worthy, O God, of this friendship.  My joy, my privilege, and my life aspiration are to be obedient to His every Word.  In like manner, O God, help me to be the kind of friend to my fellow travelers that you would have me to be.  Amen.

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