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A person who has friends may be harmed by them, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
When reading this verse, I think of Jesus as an example of a friend who sticks "closer than a brother". In fact, Jesus calls those who do what He commands friends: John 15:13-14 says, "Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command." Throughout life, we come across many different people, and we don't share the same kind of relationship with everyone. The criteria for friendship though is not only about time or quality, but also about accountability, bearing one another's burdens, being willing to stand by each other through tough times, and perhaps confront one another! May the Lord bless you with the best kind of friendships in your life, and allow Him to be the foundation of those bonds.
The eye cannot say to the hand, “I do not need you,” nor in turn can the head say to the foot, “I do not need you.” On the contrary, those members that seem to be weaker are essential, and those members we consider less honorable we clothe with greater honor, and our unpresentable members are clothed with dignity, but our presentable members do not need this. Instead, God has blended together the body, giving greater honor to the lesser member, so that there may be no division in the body, but the members may have mutual concern for one another. If one member suffers, everyone suffers with it. If a member is honored, all rejoice with it.
Interdependent is defined as: mutually dependent; depending on each other. I think that God’s design for His church is for its members to be interdependent, and to live and work under the authority of Jesus Christ, who is the head of the body. Don’t miss the 2nd part of verse 24: “But God has put the body together, giving greater honor to the parts that lacked it, SO THAT there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other.” What happens to a member of the body happens to the entire body. If you break your leg, the other leg and the rest of the members of your body are called upon to make changes in order for the body to stand firm. If the other members of your body do not step up, all members fall down and suffer. The goal is to stand firm together in Christ Jesus, joined as one body.
In fact this is why we work hard and struggle, because we have set our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of believers.
Paul is encouraging Timothy to train in godliness, and also speaking the truth to him about the suffering and hard work it takes to be a minister of the gospel. The point is that they serve, with a singular and ignited passion, the living God. He is the God who is worth whatever amount of work, and whatever amount of suffering, to the point that living faithful to His leading IS worship. I would argue that Paul delights in the suffering and labor for the Lord, and he is encouraging Timothy to do the same. In 1 Samuel 2 Hannah prays, “My heart rejoices in the Lord; in the Lord my horn is lifted high. My mouth boasts over my enemies, for I delight in your deliverance.” Psalm 35:9 says, “Then my soul will rejoice in the Lord and delight in his salvation.” The Lord delights in you, and His hope is that you would delight in Him.
Trust in the Lord from this time forward, even in Yah, the Lord, an enduring protector! Indeed, the Lord knocks down those who live in a high place,he brings down an elevated town; he brings it down to the ground, he throws it down to the dust. It is trampled underfoot by the feet of the oppressed, by the soles of the poor.”
The Lord brings hope to the poor and oppressed, and He lifts up those in need. In Matthew 9 when questioned about the company He kept, Jesus said, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy, not sacrifice.’ For I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.” Jesus is not a far off, distant Savior. He chose to be in the midst of the sick, readily available to them, so that they would have hope and life. Know today that He is able to reach you, He wants you to reach for Him, and that He is strong enough to deliver you from anything. You have a sure hope in the Lord!
To each person the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the benefit of all. For one person is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, and another the message of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, and to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another performance of miracles, to another prophecy, and to another discernment of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, and to another the interpretation of tongues. It is one and the same Spirit, distributing as he decides to each person, who produces all these things.
Who receives what gift will always be the prerogative of God. We do not pick and choose, though I think sometimes we’d like to. We can receive these gifts because of the work Christ did on the cross, and because the Holy Spirit has made His home with us in Christ Jesus! These gifts are for the benefit of ALL, and that makes them a vehicle for the gospel to go forth, as well as a vehicle we can use to build up and encourage the body of Christ. Perhaps you do not know what your gift is, or would prefer it be something different. Spend some time seeking the Lord and go through your experiences in life. Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you possible gifts as you are reflecting, and trust a mentor or good friend to help you process through how God may want to use you for the good of others, and to testify about His great love.