The Frictions of Followership

If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. — John 15:18-19

Jesus makes the point again with another condition that comes with loving Him. The love of Jesus results in being hated by this world. This is because alignment with Jesus puts us in opposition to those who are aligned with this world. Our desires, thoughts, and actions should be profoundly different. Over time, they should create rising friction with those of the world. And not friction for the sake of friction, but friction from knowing Jesus so intimately that our intimacy with Him is hated by those we no longer associate with, align with, or agree with.

I believe every believer should go through some distinct phases and stages of intimacy with Jesus. First, it begins with a relationship with Jesus. Second, we increase the amount of time hearing from Him and speaking to Him. Third, our will becomes more aligned with His will. Fourth, people encounter distinct changes in our thoughts and behaviors. Fifth, there is increasing love for God's people. Sixth, our increasing love for Jesus results in increasing hate by those of the world.

But don't confuse this with a psychological decision to hate people in the world. It's a love of Jesus that grows to the point that the world hates us because we are unwilling to associate with them because we love Jesus. And then, when you see, hear, and feel this hatred, you have to keep in mind that the person they really hate is Jesus, not you.

And believers who know this know the fullness of the cost of following Jesus.


  1. Are you experiencing friction with the world because of your intimacy with Jesus? How has this affected your relationships and daily life, and what changes are you being called to make to align more closely with His will?
  2. How is your love for Jesus growing, and how does it manifest in your actions and thoughts? If the world is beginning to respond to you differently, what does this reveal about your walk with Christ, and how are you handling the challenges and blessings that come with this journey?

DO THIS: Take a step toward loving Jesus. You will know you did because the world will hate you.

PRAY THIS: Lord Jesus, guide my heart to know You more intimately, that I may boldly walk in alignment with Your will, even when the world opposes me. Strengthen me, Father, to be a beacon of Your love, undeterred by the world's hatred, and ever focused on the path You have set before me. Amen.

PLAY THIS: I Have Decided.

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7 thoughts on “The Frictions of Followership

  1. Shawn Lee says:

    Good Word! Spiritual growth increases worldly adversity but it’s a good thing because its then that we know we are growing stronger and getting closer to Him!

  2. Eddie Ackerman says:

    James, the half-brother of Jesus, who wrote the short, but powerful book of James in the New Testament, was not initially a follower of Jesus. He did not follow and believe in Jesus until AFTER the resurrection. This is how he started the book he wrote about who he serves and how he views it…

    James 1:1-4

  3. Scott E. Lockwood says:

    That friction is real. I remember playing a gig in a bar one time after I had gotten Baptized. After singing “I Can Only Imagine, I put a graphic up on the screen that said Jesus (Heart)’s You. It was not received well….However it did spark a brief discussion. To this day I’ve never seen that guy. But I take comfort that I handled the situation with love and that the seed was planted and I know this….God’s word never comes back void. There are those days man…haha. But that’s why we are also called to do life as Christians together.

  4. gonzalo correa says:

    Another wonderful explanation and understanding of the Word. Indeed, the world hates Jesus and seeks to destroy any one of us that believe, follow, and abide in Him. But, Jesus said… “I’ll be back” so we wait in faith regardless of the world’s attacks and friction. Be strong and courageous for our earthly battle is not over yet.

  5. Tom Fredericks Sr. says:

    It’s time to get off the fence men! Choose wisely! There’s NO other way! Only Jesus has THE words of Life! – John 6:68

    “You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy with God?” – James 4:4

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