Have you ever known a person who is continually dropping names? Regardless of the topic, they have had an encounter with a famous person or they have a friend that has a story that allows them to drop the name. It doesn’t even matter if the story has any relevant connection to the topic of conversation, they have a name to drop and they want to get it out there.
Name droppers have been called narcissistic. They don’t really feel too good about themselves and they want others to know how important they are, so they grab onto the coattails of someone famous to increase their own importance. It’s kind of sad really.
Have you ever known Christians who do this? I have. We’re sitting in church and suddenly we all burst out “I am a friend of God. I am a friend of God. I am a friend of God…He calls me friend.” Now before you get to defensive let me explain. There are a few Scriptures that refer to specific people as friends of God.
- Abraham is called God’s friend in 2 Chronicles 20:7 and James 2:23.
- God says Abraham is His friend in Isaiah 41:8.
- Proverbs 18:24 doesn’t specifically name God, but says “there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother” and it is safe to say that Solomon was referring to God.
- Jesus referred to Judas as a friend in Matt. 26:50.
- Jesus says His disciples are His friends in John 15.
The good news is, if these people were considered friends of God, then becoming a friend of God is an attainable status, but one thing I don’t ever see in Scripture is someone claiming that status for themselves. Abraham didn’t call himself God’s friend. The disciples didn’t call themselves Jesus’ friends. Paul certainly didn’t think of himself as a friend of God.
So how did our heroes of the faith view themselves concerning God? Abraham fell on his face. Peter refers to himself as an unworthy sinner and Paul calls himself a wretched man and a slave of Christ.
How big is our Christian ego to claim a status that can only be given by God? It’s the ultimate in Christian narcissism.
As I said earlier, becoming a friend of God is an attainable status, but the only way we can be considered friends of God is by understanding how unworthy we really are and then doing everything within our power to live our lives for His glory. You don’t become a friend of God by showing up on Sunday mornings and showing out the rest of the week. God’s friends obey His commands.
As Jesus told His disciples, “You are my friends if you do what I command you.”