Sermon

The Companionship of Christ

Michael Beck Michael Beck

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companion > from Old French compaignon, literally ‘one who breaks bread with another,’
based on Latin com- ‘together with’ + panis ‘bread.’

The privilege of every believer is to be the companion of Christ.

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. (Revelation 3:20)

The first calling of a disciple of Christ is to be “with Him.”

And he ordained twelve, that they should be with him, and that he might send them forth to preach (Mark 3:14)

Jesus responded to His followers desire to be with Him.

And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.
Then Jesus turned, and saw them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? They said unto him, Rabbi, (which is to say, being interpreted, Master,) where dwellest thou?
He saith unto them, Come and see. They came and saw where he dwelt, and abode with him that day: for it was about the tenth hour. (John 1:37-39)

From the beginning, God was not insensitive to our desire for companionship.

And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him. (Genesis 2:18)

God is not against our having companions on a human level.

And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;
And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man. (Genesis 2:21,22)

A companion is one whose company brings us joy.

When a man hath taken a new wife, he shall not go out to war, neither shall he be charged with any business: but he shall be free at home one year, and shall cheer up his wife which he hath taken. (Deuteronomy 24:5)

A companion is one who travels through life with us and shares the same experiences.

Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity, which he hath given thee under the sun, all the days of thy vanity: for that is thy portion in this life, and in thy labour which thou takest under the sun. (Ecclesiastes 9:8,9)

joyfully > Hebrew – ra’ah > see (879 times) look (104 times) behold (83 times)

Look on life with the wife whom you love all the days of the life of your vanity, which He gave you under the sun, all the days of your vanity. For that is your share in this life, and in your labor which you labor under the sun. (Eccl. 9:9 GLT)

The disciples were Christ’s companions through all His travels.

And it came to pass afterward, that he went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve were with him, (Luke 8:1)

A companion is one who looks after and assists us.

And certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils,
And Joanna the wife of Chuza Herod’s steward, and Susanna, and many others, which ministered unto him of their substance. (Luke 8:2-3)

The Apostle Paul also had companions who travelled with him.

And the whole city was filled with confusion: and having caught Gaius and Aristarchus, men of Macedonia, Paul’s companions in travel, they rushed with one accord into the theatre. (Acts 19:29)

Paul had companions who “ministered to his wants.”

Yet I supposed it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, and companion in labour, and fellowsoldier, but your messenger, and he that ministered to my wants. (Philippians 2:25)

A true companion sticks with us “at all times” and especially arises to the occasion in a day of adversity.

A friend loveth at all times, and a brother is born for adversity. (Proverbs 17:17)

A “companion in tribulation” feels what we are going through and is there to help us in any way they can.

I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Jesus Christ, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Jesus Christ. (Revelation 1:9)

It is a great blessing and comfort to have a companion by one’s side when trouble comes.

Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour.
For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow… (Ecclesiastes 4:9)

It is a terrible thing to be alone in the midst of a trial.

But woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up. (Ecclesiastes 4:10)

When Paul had no one else by His side, the Lord stood with him.

At my first answer no man stood with me, but all men forsook me: I pray God that it may not be laid to their charge.
Notwithstanding the Lord stood with me, and strengthened me; that by me the preaching might be fully known, and that all the Gentiles might hear: and I was delivered out of the mouth of the lion. (2 Timothy 4:16,17)

The Lord reassures those who are His that He will be with them and help them in every experience they face.

Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. (Isaiah 41:10)

It is comforting to know that our companion will be with us no matter what lies ahead for us.

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. (Psalm 23:4)

When those we have been closest to and have relied on the most have departed from us, the Lord promises He will still be there for us.

When my father and my mother forsake me, then the LORD will take me up. (Psalm 27:10)

When the Lord is our companion He promises to guide and support us till our last breath.

For this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death. (Psalm 48:14)

Hearken unto me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house of Israel, which are borne by me from the belly, which are carried from the womb:
And even to your old age I am he; and even to hoar hairs will I carry you: I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry, and will deliver you. (Isaiah 46:3,4)

Those who enter the marriage covenant with each other become companions.

Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the LORD hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant. (Malachi 2:14)

The Lord called Israel into covenant relationship when she was abandoned and distressed.

For thy Maker is thine husband; the LORD of hosts is his name; and thy Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; The God of the whole earth shall he be called.
For the LORD hath called thee as a woman forsaken and grieved in spirit, and a wife of youth, when thou wast refused, saith thy God. (Isaiah 54:5,6)

Those outside covenant relationship with God are without the presence and companionship of God in the world.

Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;
That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: (Ephesians 2:11,12)

Through entering into the New Covenant, those who were once without the companionship of God in the world, no longer need be alone.

But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. (Ephesians 2:13)

When we have made the Lord our companion, He promises to be our companion who will be right beside us whenever we are in trouble.

He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty…
Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.
He shall call upon me, and I will answer him: I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him, and honour him.
With long life will I satisfy him, and shew him my salvation. (Psalm 91:1,14-16)

Jesus is the companion whose very presence beside us through all of life is our greatest comfort.

…There is a friend that sticketh closer than a brother. (Proverbs 18:24)

There is no trial that we can face in this life that Jesus cannot relate to and is not our companion in.

For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. (Hebrews 4:15)

Not only does Jesus perfectly understand and care, but He alone has the ability to help us in our “time of need.”

Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:16)


Michael Beck is a pastor in New York City and the main author on Signpost. Receive a daily devotional he publishes every morning via email.