“The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and you say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.” Luke 7:34
Jesus was a friend of sinners. Yes, Holiness helped unholiness. Godliness gave to ungodliness. Perfection served imperfection. The sinless mingled with sin. Christ was guilty of influencing the guilty toward God for He was God. He ate with them, He drank with them and He laughed with them. His life of love was irresistible to those who lacked true love. His clear, authoritative teaching gave hope, forgiveness, and peace. Like spiritual sonar Jesus came to seek and save the lost. His heart broke for the broken.
We are all sinners, yet there is a difference between a sinner who knows Jesus and a sinner who does not know Jesus. Because we have been saved by the grace of God, we know a better way than the way of waywardness. Like any good father our Father in heaven wants a relationship with His children. By faith in His son Jesus we have full access to God. We are friends with Jesus, so we can befriend others for Jesus.
“And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend.” James 2:23
Are your friendships only with those within the faith? Are any what have been tabbed as outsiders a part of your circle of influence? If so, wonderful—if not, pray for a person who needs your loving hospitality. Like an athletic team you have a home court advantage when you invite someone into your home. Show them a good time, so they can see that God is good by your unselfish service. Sinners need a safe environment to feel accepted and be real.
Maybe you accept an invitation from an unsaved friend on their terms. It may be a golf game, a football or basketball game, a dinner, a social event, or a party. Be pleasant, not preachy. Be a friend with no agenda but to love and be loved. Do not compromise your Biblical convictions — you are in the world without being of the world. Some will find you crazy for your crazy love, but love nonetheless. Sinners need a friend. Are you a friend?