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Non-Christian Friends?

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  • Non-Christian Friends?

    Whether it's friends you grew up with before you converted or people you work with, do you ever have awkward moment where religion comes up? I have old friends I just can't seem to give up because we have history but they aren't the greatest Christians. Meaning they grew up Christian but hit college and fell in love with alcohol and love. It's a modern world, so I don't feel it's my place to tell them what to do with their life. But we get into arguments based on the fact that I'm boring. I don't enjoy clubbing so we usually meet at a Starbucks or some restaurant. I find it's easier not to sin if you don't put yourself in a situation where it's unavoidable. But this is causing a strain on my friendship with them. I imagine it will change when they get married or at least over thirty, so I just need to be patient. But I was wondering how other people deal with their non-Christian or at least very bad Christian friends?

  • #2
    I don't have a lot of non-Christian friends. I think, in my life's situations I sort of gravitated toward others who believed essentially the same as I do. However, work situations are a different story altogether. You can't always choose your associates at work. I had a lot of people I worked with whom I considered friends or at least casual acquaintances, but were not Christians or didn't believe as I did. A lot of the people I worked with thought I was boring too. But I thought they were dull as dirt always going to bars after work, drinking themselves silly when they could be having fun doing something like bowling or seeing a movie. It's a matter of perspective, I guess. I dealt with these people pretty much by avoiding them after hours, and just going home to do my own thing. I was a bit of a loner in my younger years, so this wasn't a big deal for me. I would suggest that if your friends are bored with meeting you at a restaurant or the coffee shop, then perhaps you could just randomly invite someone out to a movie or something. Or take that person shopping, or wherever. I know a lot of people who get practically delirious with joy just walking through the mall. Let them know that you're not as dull as they assumed, and that you live a normal life albeit with a few minor restrictions attached.
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    • #3
      There's nothing wrong with having non-Christian friends. The pharisees often criticized Jesus because he dined with sinners. As Jesus cared about for everyone so should we. However there's a point where you must draw the line. If your friends are tempting you to sin, then you don't need those friends in your life. You might be unwilling to let go but remember, it is God who provides us with all the good things in our lives. If we let go of friends who may make us stumble, God will give us better friends if we ask Him for them.
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      • #4
        If God gives us the opportunity to establish friendships with nonChristians we should always keep in mind the fact that he may be doing it so we can share the gospel with them. Our preference should be to associate with Christians but if we hang out with them exclusively how can we carry out Christ's command to preach the gospel to everyone?
        Clyde Herrin's Blog
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        • #5
          Not really, I'm fairly open to people with different religions. We discuss the differences, the changes in their culture, food habits, general day to day stuff like that. They have never once tried to convince me to switch religion, and I never tried to convert them as well, as we are just friends who see each other daily in class, outside, etc, and the only reason I can think of that religion is important is when I'm meeting someone that I may have a future with, as religion would definitely be a big factor there. But as for friends, I really don't mind, and they don't mind it either.
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          • #6
            I have a lot of friends who are non Christian, and most of them I would say are just agnostic or have no formal devotion to any religion, which I think is more of a sign of the times than anything. I was always told though that people will come back to their faith later in life and I think that it is true. I do think that it has value to have friends who are of different faiths and backgrounds, though, like OursIsTheFury mentioned it is nice to discuss and have engaging conversations about real issues.
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            • #7
              Originally posted by Smithee View Post
              There's nothing wrong with having non-Christian friends. The pharisees often criticized Jesus because he dined with sinners. As Jesus cared about for everyone so should we. However there's a point where you must draw the line. If your friends are tempting you to sin, then you don't need those friends in your life. You might be unwilling to let go but remember, it is God who provides us with all the good things in our lives. If we let go of friends who may make us stumble, God will give us better friends if we ask Him for them.
              This is so true! I once had a close friend who was stumbling through life and just beginning to get to know Christ. She had so many problems and she would call me to complain about them. I would try to help her out, and would talk for hours until I was blue in the face, only to have her ask the same questions again and again during the conversation. This happened many times and her problems were never resolved. Finally I could hear the Lord persuading me to move on and say goodbye to this person. I finally did that and for years I wondered how she was doing. I reconnected with her a year or so back and found out that she didn't even remember those times from the past. Later I found out she had some kind of personality disorder, which explained a lot. I finally had closure on the relationship, and I turned her over to the Lord. There are just some things that we as imperfect people, can't handle.
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              • #8
                Originally posted by LeapOfFaith89 View Post
                Whether it's friends you grew up with before you converted or people you work with, do you ever have awkward moment where religion comes up? I have old friends I just can't seem to give up because we have history but they aren't the greatest Christians. Meaning they grew up Christian but hit college and fell in love with alcohol and love. It's a modern world, so I don't feel it's my place to tell them what to do with their life. But we get into arguments based on the fact that I'm boring. I don't enjoy clubbing so we usually meet at a Starbucks or some restaurant. I find it's easier not to sin if you don't put yourself in a situation where it's unavoidable. But this is causing a strain on my friendship with them. I imagine it will change when they get married or at least over thirty, so I just need to be patient. But I was wondering how other people deal with their non-Christian or at least very bad Christian friends?
                I spose I try to just be an example to my non-Christian friends and when they ask questions I'm prepared with an answer from scripture so that I can plant a seed because a lot of my non-Christian friends really don't know the bible but they know a lot of bad Christians who are self-righteous and I don't want to be one of those.
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                • #9
                  I am a kind of person that bond easily with people both Christians and non Christians because to grow I need my brethren and to fulfill ultimate mandate I have to associate with those without Christ that I may gain them to Christ. My room mate while I was in school was a bad Christian because he clubs, smokes and drinks. But we lived together for two good years and during those times I always show him a better way of life by my lifestyle as a good Christian. But, right now, to the glory of God, because of my way of life while we were together he is a better Christian now. No more cigarettes, alcohol or clubs. But in any case we just have to be very careful while associating with them that we don't let them draw us out of the light.
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                  • #10
                    My grandfather always told me that the truth is like the center of town, it doesn't matter which side you approach it from, when you get there you're all at the same place. This has stayed with me throughout my life, and I have learned that no matter what people believe in or don't believe in, the truth of life remains the same for all of us. We are all going to the 'center of town' and it does not matter how we get there. All I can do is to live my life in a way that hopefully one day inspires them to want to live their life the same way.
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                    • #11
                      The results that we get in our lives are the reflection of the five closest people in our life. Meaning that if your five closest friends are lazy, broke and sick - then chances are you will end up the same, but if they are hard-working, wealthy and healthy and successful, then the odds are in your favor that you will end up the same way. So as a christian you need to decide how important it is to you for you to remain one, and adjust the people in your environment accordingly because they will influence you whether you are conscious of it or not,.
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                      • #12
                        I don't really have any close non-Christian friends. In my business life, however, I interact with non-Christians or Christians of other denominations. Some of them I find friendly and honest and I can respect that. But deep, abiding friendships, are with other brothers and sisters.
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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by LeapOfFaith89 View Post
                          Whether it's friends you grew up with before you converted or people you work with, do you ever have awkward moment where religion comes up? I have old friends I just can't seem to give up because we have history but they aren't the greatest Christians. Meaning they grew up Christian but hit college and fell in love with alcohol and love. It's a modern world, so I don't feel it's my place to tell them what to do with their life. But we get into arguments based on the fact that I'm boring. I don't enjoy clubbing so we usually meet at a Starbucks or some restaurant. I find it's easier not to sin if you don't put yourself in a situation where it's unavoidable. But this is causing a strain on my friendship with them. I imagine it will change when they get married or at least over thirty, so I just need to be patient. But I was wondering how other people deal with their non-Christian or at least very bad Christian friends?
                          Hi LoF, sadly, I have lost a number of friends AND family members who simply will not accept my being a Christian (even after 30 years). In some cases, often of those closest to me, I didn't even get the chance to fully present the Gospel to them, except to tell them how wonderful God is and how He completely changed my life (which became obvious to those who knew me best, even if I hadn't had the chance to tell them about all that had happened to me, because of the overnight changes they saw in how I chose to live my life). It's not like they hate me or won't talk to me if pressed, but they definitely keep their distance.

                          This was VERY difficult for me and still is because (outside of those few friends and family members who have now become Christians), I know we will never be close again, not like we used to be :(

                          Of course, I suppose it shouldn't really be a surprise since both the Lord (i.e. Matthew 10:34-36; John 15:18-19) and St. Paul (i.e. 2 Timothy 3:12), indicated clearly that such would indeed be the case.

                          Yours and His,
                          David
                          Simul Justus et Peccator ~Martin Luther

                          "We are justified by faith alone, but the faith that justifies is never alone" ~John Calvin

                          "The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us." ~C. S. Lewis

                          "The secret is Christ in me, not me in a different set of circumstances" ~Elisabeth Elliot

                          "The law is for the self-righteous to humble their pride; the Gospel is for the lost to remove their despair. ~C. H. Spurgeon
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                          • #14
                            I do have non-Christian friends and certainly they have their own beliefs. We usually don't discuss anything about religion because it might lead to debates and misunderstandings. As we all know, some people are a bit too conservative and sensitive in regards to their religion that they don't allow anything to ruin their faith and beliefs. That's why some of us who are friends with a different religion don't usually talk about their cultures and beliefs. After all, it's our own impression towards ones religion anyway.
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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Jasmin Cottontail View Post
                              After all, it's our own impression towards ones religion anyway.
                              The Bible is God's revelation about what is true and what is false. In one of your other posts you said you don't read the Bible. You should start doing so and compare your beliefs with what it teaches. When it comes to religion is is essential that you know what is true and what is false.
                              Clyde Herrin's Blog
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