“My son, if thou be surety for thy friend, if thou hast stricken thy hand with a stranger, Thou art snared with the words of thy mouth, thou art taken with the words of thy mouth. Do this now, my son, and deliver thyself, when thou art come into the hand of thy friend; go, humble thyself, and make sure thy friend. Give not sleep to thine eyes, nor slumber to thine eyelids. Deliver thyself as a roe from the hand of the hunter, and as a bird from the hand of the fowler."
Being a surety is to be accountable for another by pledge. Solomon seems to discourage his son from getting into such a situation; and if so, then to immediately dissolve the debt.
Christ gives a different perspective in Luke 6, encouraging the multitudes to lend to others. He assures them, and us today, of the great rewards that are in store for those who give.
“And if ye lend to them of whom ye hope to receive, what thank have ye? for sinners also lend to sinners, to receive as much again. But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.”
Are you willing to give to a friend without expecting anything in return?
The Apostle Paul was a surety for his friend Onesimus when he wrote to Philemon on his behalf. He was willing to pay his friend’s debt.
“If thou count me therefore a partner, receive him as myself. If he hath wronged thee, or oweth thee ought, put that on mine account; I Paul have written it with mine own hand, I will repay it: albeit I do not say to thee how thou owest unto me even thine own self besides.”
What a picture of salvation that is found in the finished work of Jesus Christ! The Friend of all Friends proved His love for us by giving His life as a ransom for many. He paid the debt for our sins that we could not pay.
“A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly: and there is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother.”
Job 13-14 | 2 Peter 1 | Proverbs 17
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