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Dark Friendships

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  • Dark Friendships

    In light of 2Cor. 6:14-15:

    "Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever?"

    Is it disobedient to cultivate close friendships with unbelievers? Didn't Jesus dine and drink with sinners? How do we navigate this?

  • #2
    The context refers to church fellowship with heretics (not marriage as people normally say) and I think making this apply to friendships would be abusing this particular verse.
    "I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save OUR children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right! Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "OUR" bombers! This does not jell." - Leonard Ravenhill

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    • #3
      Originally posted by KingsGambit View Post
      The context refers to church fellowship with heretics (not marriage as people normally say) and I think making this apply to friendships would be abusing this particular verse.
      "Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever?"

      I understand the context and book as a whole was a response to false apostle's, yet you seem to be defining "unbeliever" as "heretic", where is warrant for that? I imagine if this verse was just confined to the false teacher's/apostle's Paul would have stated as much.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Scrawly View Post
        In light of 2Cor. 6:14-15:

        "Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever?"

        Is it disobedient to cultivate close friendships with unbelievers? Didn't Jesus dine and drink with sinners? How do we navigate this?
        Jesus ate with sinners, yes, but not because he needed their friendship. He was there to minister.
        "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Scrawly View Post
          Didn't Jesus dine and drink with sinners? How do we navigate this?
          Can you look at the passages in the NT where Jesus associated with sinners and believe that He was cultivating close friendships? Only if you are dishonest.
          Micah 6:8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

          Comment


          • #6
            Yes, but Jesus was friends with Judas, who was not an authentic believer (and who was stealing from the money supply). In fact, Jesus loved Judas and had him in his innermost circle. I simply don't see a biblical warrant against friendships with unbelievers. It seems the way this thread is heading we seem to be differentiating between acquaintance and friend in a way that I don't know if the writers of Scripture would have. It also seems to lead to strange real world issues. What constitutes a friend? Going to a dinner party with them (1 Corinthians 10:27) doesn't, but some other arbitrary distinction does?

            As for Paul not being clear enough: As Craig Blomberg points out, 1 Corinthians was written in a manner where the Corinthians asked Paul a list of questions and Paul responded to them in order. Therefore, the context for everything was probably far clearer for the original hearers than it was for us so it may be unfair for us to ask Paul to be "clearer".
            "I am not angered that the Moral Majority boys campaign against abortion. I am angry when the same men who say, "Save OUR children" bellow "Build more and bigger bombers." That's right! Blast the children in other nations into eternity, or limbless misery as they lay crippled from "OUR" bombers! This does not jell." - Leonard Ravenhill

            Comment


            • #7
              I think it might be good to define "friendships", as there are vast degrees of... I have had "friends" at work that are nowhere near as close as the "friends" at Church.

              We are to be IN this world, but not OF this world... I'm not "yoked" to my friends at my former work to the degree that I am "yoked" with my friends at Church.
              "Neighbor, how long has it been since you’ve had a big, thick, steaming bowl of Wolf Brand Chili?”

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              • #8
                Dark friendships...you make it sound as if unbelievers consort with demons of the stygian abyss or something.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Manwë Súlimo View Post
                  Dark friendships...you make it sound as if unbelievers consort with demons of the stygian abyss or something.
                  Unbelievers have a totally different attitude, worldview and outlook on life. Of course it's not impossible to have unbelieving friends, but I always notice a definite difference in so many ways (I also live in a bad part of LA, so this is probably magnified). I can see where it could become infectious.

                  And as to the OP; it was Jesus. I doubt the worldview of those around him could warp his worldview. It would have been the complete opposite. Jesus' worldview was infectious to them.
                  Last edited by seanD; 07-08-2014, 06:44 PM. Reason: grammar clarity
                  "I was the CIA director. We lied, we cheated, we stole, it was like... we had entire training courses. It reminds you of the glory of the American experiment." - Mike Pompeo, Secretary of State (source).

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                  • #10
                    How about a Christian man asking a woman he does not know for a date? He does not ask, "Are you Christian?"
                    The greater number of laws . . . , the more thieves . . . there will be. ---- Lao-Tzu

                    [T]he truth I’m after and the truth never harmed anyone. What harms us is to persist in self-deceit and ignorance -— Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

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                    • #11
                      I consider all my friends and everyone I meet as potential Christians or quite possibly better human beings than me. I've never worried about friends endangering my faith, but maybe that's because I'm an old guy who's studied and learned a whole lot of stuff from a lot of people in my life, none of which ever seemed dangerous to me. I think we are called to be friends with sinners in the same way as Jesus was and is a friend of sinners. St Thomas Aquinas considered friendship to be the highest form of love, even love of God.
                      βλέπομεν γὰρ ἄρτι δι᾿ ἐσόπτρου ἐν αἰνίγματι, τότε δὲ πρόσωπον πρὸς πρόσωπον·
                      ἄρτι γινώσκω ἐκ μέρους, τότε δὲ ἐπιγνώσομαι καθὼς καὶ ἐπεγνώσθην.

                      אָכֵ֕ן אַתָּ֖ה אֵ֣ל מִסְתַּתֵּ֑ר אֱלֹהֵ֥י יִשְׂרָאֵ֖ל מוֹשִֽׁיעַ׃

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Truthseeker View Post
                        How about a Christian man asking a woman he does not know for a date? He does not ask, "Are you Christian?"
                        Besides a few other exceptions unless he meets her in church or TWEB he should avoid doing such a thing. Asking a chick one totally doesn't know out on a date spells trouble. What reason could there be for a guy to do this unless she was hot and/or loaded with cash?

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                        • #13
                          If he's in a Christian area, he may just be wanting to take a chance.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by KingsGambit View Post
                            Yes, but Jesus was friends with Judas, who was not an authentic believer (and who was stealing from the money supply). In fact, Jesus loved Judas and had him in his innermost circle. I simply don't see a biblical warrant against friendships with unbelievers. It seems the way this thread is heading we seem to be differentiating between acquaintance and friend in a way that I don't know if the writers of Scripture would have. It also seems to lead to strange real world issues. What constitutes a friend? Going to a dinner party with them (1 Corinthians 10:27) doesn't, but some other arbitrary distinction does?

                            As for Paul not being clear enough: As Craig Blomberg points out, 1 Corinthians was written in a manner where the Corinthians asked Paul a list of questions and Paul responded to them in order. Therefore, the context for everything was probably far clearer for the original hearers than it was for us so it may be unfair for us to ask Paul to be "clearer".
                            Judas had a role to play, plus he did feign belief. Still I did not say any thing about not allowing unbelieving friends. How else can you share Christ? The point is cultivating unbelievers just as close friends with an assumption of some sort of equality.

                            My post specifically addressed Scrawly's attempt to create a division. He quite normally does that, asking phoney questions to create argument.
                            Micah 6:8 He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by KingsGambit View Post
                              Yes, but Jesus was friends with Judas, who was not an authentic believer (and who was stealing from the money supply). In fact, Jesus loved Judas and had him in his innermost circle. I simply don't see a biblical warrant against friendships with unbelievers. It seems the way this thread is heading we seem to be differentiating between acquaintance and friend in a way that I don't know if the writers of Scripture would have. It also seems to lead to strange real world issues. What constitutes a friend? Going to a dinner party with them (1 Corinthians 10:27) doesn't, but some other arbitrary distinction does?
                              These are some good points but wasn't Judas destined for the fall, and so was serving a purpose? The dinner party verse is good, but once again, I don't know if close friendship is in view here. Close friendship with unbelievers does certainly seem to be in view in 2Cor. 6:14-15.

                              As for Paul not being clear enough: As Craig Blomberg points out, 1 Corinthians was written in a manner where the Corinthians asked Paul a list of questions and Paul responded to them in order. Therefore, the context for everything was probably far clearer for the original hearers than it was for us so it may be unfair for us to ask Paul to be "clearer".
                              Right, but I think, once again, Paul is pretty clear in 2Cor. 6: 14-15..unless you want to maintain that the unbelievers there are defined as merely the false teachers...I don't see it though.

                              Comment

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