“And these are they by the way side, where the word is sown; but when they have heard, Satan cometh immediately, and taketh away the word that was sown in their hearts.”
Everybody is affected by somebody. Galatians 5:7 says, “Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth?” A “who” is what affected the what of these people. People never get involved in bad things or stop serving the LORD without a “who” that influences them for wrong.
Several years ago, I was talking to a young lady who was studying her homework, and I asked her how she was doing in school. She told me that she was not getting good grades to which I responded that she needs to talk to her teacher about her lack of understanding. The young lady told me that she had only started getting bad grades recently. That statement caused me to ask her who she became friend with recently. She was shocked at my question. She told me that she had started dating a young man recently. The whole reason this young lady changed was because of a “who” that entered into her life.
The parable of the sower sowing seeds gives good insight into what type of friends you should have. There are four types of seed mentioned in this parable that shows what type of friends to avoid, and one type of friends to have.
The first type of friend is a wayside friend. These are friends who never respond to the Word of God or preaching. These are the type of friends who will get you into trouble, and they will cause you to become a casualty in the Christian walk. These are often casual friendships, but you must be careful not to allow them to influence you. You must only be conversational with them in their presence, but never seek to be close to them. Yes, these type of friends are often attractive in personality, but they will destroy you in the end.
The second type of friend is a stony ground friend. These are the type of friends who change with the times and crowds. These friends are like whoever they are with, and they have no horizon by which to figure out what they believe. You must be careful about these type of friends because they will influence you to change. Never allow yourself to become a person who changes with the crowd. Be a person who is known to be the same all the time. Yes, these types of people are often popular, but they change with whatever is popular at the moment. You should only allow yourself to be an acquaintance with them, but never allow yourself into a friend relationship with them.
The third type of friend is a thorny friend. These friends are worldly by nature, and they are wrapped up in possessions, worldly activities, and worldly dreams. These friends will never influence you for right. These types of people are more interested in what the world offers and have no interest in the things of God. Thorny friends will pull you out of church and push you towards the world. Be kind to these people, but never become their friend.
The fourth type of friend is a fertile ground friend. These are the friends you want in your life. You will discover these friends as you serve the LORD, and they will become friends of a lifetime. You won’t have to seek these friends out if you are serving the LORD because they are serving the LORD with you. Let me encourage you to have fertile ground friends because they will always influence you to do more for God.