There’s No Friend Like Jesus

Many songs celebrate not only the name Jesus but also other names Jesus has. For example, a fine old hymn called “Blessed Be The Name” sings of Jesus as “♫♪ Redeemer, savior, friend of man ♫♪”. If Jesus were only our Savior or only our Redeemer, we would still shout out with joy. How much more we can rejoice knowing Jesus is also our friend! Please give this song a sing-along listen, then let’s talk about friends.

“You are my friends”

What does it mean to be one of Jesus’ friends?

Jesus said, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. (John 15:12-15 ESV)

There is a lot in these verses! Here are a few thoughts we could consider —

“Love one another as I have loved you” — Jesus gave his disciples this key to friendship. This is a huge truth for us to think about.

“No longer do I call you servants…” Is Jesus telling them service went out the window when friendship entered? I don’t think so. Notice that Jesus said he is calling them by a different name — no longer “servants”, now “friends”. Reason given? “For [because] all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.”

Jesus gave them God’s Word. It’s what friends do. Now they knew what their master was doing, which brought them even closer to the master. And so these servants got to wear another — an additional — wonderful hat. They serve and they are friends. Love is added to the mix to energize the service and enable the friendship. Service does not end — it becomes more energized by a greater motive — love.

In a similar way, we, too, as born-again believers get to serve the Master in love — AND we, too, have been given the word of the Lord so we can know what the Master is doing. 2 Corinthians 5 says we have been given the ministry of reconciliation and the word of reconciliation. We are called to speak the truth in love to win souls for the Lord. We can be called servants, ministers, sons of God … and friends of Jesus.

Amen? Anyone seeing good news here?

Qualities of a friend

Proverbs teaches qualities of a friend. Here are a few gems we can ponder:

  • He who loves purity of heart, and whose speech is gracious, will have the king as his friend.
  • A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.
  • Oil and perfume make the heart glad, and the sweetness of a friend comes from his earnest counsel.

Here are some warnings from Corinthians and Proverbs making us wise that some “friends” are actually bad company:

  • Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.”
  • Make no friendship with a man given to anger, nor go with a wrathful man, lest you learn his ways and entangle yourself in a snare.
  • Better is open rebuke than hidden love. Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.

Being a friend

Here are a few practical tips on being a friend:

  1. Be a good listener. (NOTE: This requires practice and effort!) Learn the listening art of concentrating on what the other is saying. Look like you are listening. Make eye contact. Let your face show you are following along. Actively show interest by asking encouraging questions to gain clarification. In a few words, say back what you are hearing, to show you are understanding — being careful not to derail the speaker. Let the speaker complete the thought, and let yourself lock in on what is being said.
  2. Build trust. One way friends can build trust is by opening up and being vulnerable to each other. Letting the other know of hard lessons you have endured and learned from can encourage a closer connection. Don’t make this a “one-upsmanship” contest on who had the worst disaster. This is sharing genuine heart learning in a way that both asks for tolerance and understanding and offers it to the other. It can kill shame that sometimes strangles relationship building by dispelling the cloud of “what will the other think”. It avoids thoughts of “I’ll be quiet because I gather that — unlike me– YOU are whole and perfect.” Showing understanding by sharing empathy (“I know how you feel”) can dispel shame that might otherwise keep a person away from friendship.
  3. Make time for friends. As a rule of thumb, friendships endure if friends check in with each other at least once every couple of weeks.
  4. Play together. Friendships usually are not built by attending meetings together as effectively as at “down times” when people are playing together, relaxed and unpressured. Look for opportunities to share good fun together.
  5. Be a friend. Reach out, initiate, come up with ideas. Start new conversations — then remember to LISTEN.

“A man who has friends must himself be friendly, But there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” (Proverbs 18:24)

Be a friend indeed! Start a conversation with someone who needs a friend. It just might come up in the chat that there’s no friend like Jesus.

God bless you lots!
-Dale R.

Get this sheet music free from “The Music Box”

LYRICS: There’s No Friend Like Jesus
Text: Rev. Johnson Oatman, Jr (1899).
Tune: M. Pauline Gilmour (1899)

1. Along the way of life I find
There’s no friend like Jesus.
Tho’ other friends are true and kind,
There’s no friend like Jesus.

No friend like Jesus,
There is no friend like Jesus;
In earth beneath or heav’n above,
There’s no friend like Jesus.

2. When all is fair and skies are bright,
There’s no friend like Jesus
To fill my soul with pure delight,
There’s no friend like Jesus.

3. When fear or grief put faith to test
There’s no friend like Jesus
To give my troubled spirit rest,
There’s no friend like Jesus.

4. To give me sweet release from sin,
There’s no friend like Jesus
To cleanse and make me pure within,
There’s no friend like Jesus.

5. I’ll give to him my life, my love,
There’s no friend like Jesus.
Some day I’ll shout in heav’n above,
There’s no friend like Jesus.

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Add your comments below to complete this conversation. Thanks! – Dale R.

First posted February 8, 2022. Re-posted July 20, 2023 because Rev. Oatman wrote such a wonderful song with lots of blessings to go around. Enjoy! -D

8 Replies to “There’s No Friend Like Jesus”

  1. Julia M Witchard

    Good early morning Mr Dale… let me start by saying, “WHAT AN AN AMAZING SONG “….THERE IS NO FRIEND LIKE OUR FATHER JESUS…A FRIEND TO THE END.. A FRIEND THAT DIED SO THAT WE MIGHT LIVE…LIKE U SAID MR DALE.. WHAT A FRIEND WE HAVE IN OUR FATHER JESUS…. your sermons amazes me on how truly blessed 🙌 u are to get out words of wisdom to whomsoever will hear….it amazes me on reading what u said about the “QUALITIES “Of being a. “TRUE FRIEND “….OUR FATHER JESUS DID LEAD WITH EXAMPLES.. ON HOW WE SHOULD LOVE 💘 EACH OTHER…And u are leading by spreading ” HIS WORDS “.. like u said…which sums it all up…………WHAT A MIGHTY FRIEND WE HAVE IN OUR FATHER JESUS…..” OUR FATHER GOD, “WORD MADE FLESH… AND DIED FOR US.. WHAT AN AWESOME FRIEND….WITH A FRIEND LIKE OUR FATHER JESUS ..The enemy doesn’t stand a chance…AMAZING GRACE, HOW SWEET THAT SOUNDS… Again. what an amazing sermon.. ….. thanks again for sharing the blessing that OUR FATHER JESUS HAS BESTOWED UPON U….Keep Receiving and sharing…much 💘 goes out to u and Cathy…..Much 💘… and 🙏 blessings 🙏..

    1. Dale Reichel Post author

      Julia, thanks much for all your thoughts, encouragement and kind words. This song sure drives home the truth that Jesus seeks us out to be friends. I love “the enemy doesn’t stand a chance…” AMEN! We are blessed beyond measure. Praise the Lord! God bless you lots! – Dale R.

  2. Cathy

    It’s impossible to be sad listening to this song. You bring it to life with your fun performance and great “sermon”!

  3. Kevin Guigou

    Good friend! You continue to crank out such inspired content. Intweaves joyful music, solid teaching message and meaningful encouragement. Words are clear to hear and easy to follow. Makes it easy to get “stuck“ in people’s hearts to sing along afterwards.

    You’ve obviously found a niche need in the body of Christ that is beautifully targeted and sought after. That should perpetuate itself as people do searches for key words. We’re inspired by all your effort!

    1. Dale Reichel Post author

      Kevin, good friend indeed! Thanks much for your kind words and encouragement. I am delighted each week to find, record, and write about the helpful truths from God’s Word that these songs carry. Thanks for being part of it. God bless you lots – Dale R.

      1. Dale Reichel Post author

        Great days ahead! “So mightily grew the word of God and prevailed”. It is happening again. Suit up for service! God bless you lots — D.


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