May 27 – Friendship…
Scripture Reading: 1 Samuel 19:1-20:42 / John 17:6-26 / Psalm 68:7-14
Jonathan and David had a close and intimate relationship. God knit their hearts together and they remained loyal to one another despite the opposition they faced. Jonathan’s father, King Saul, attempted to kill David several times but here in 1 Samuel 20, Jonathan warns him of his father’s updated murderous plan. Jonathan intervened for David several times and saved his life.
Often lost in this story was Jonathan’s position. He was to succeed his father as king and the only viable threat to that possibility was David. King Saul was intimidated by David’s rising popularity and strength. Israel was rallying around David so Saul felt his only alternative was to remove his threat. Politically, Jonathan’s best interest would have been to follow his father’s plan but Jonathan was driven by a higher law, his love and commitment to David.
Jonathan’s principles were much different than the law of the world. Many have no difficulties using and abusing others for their own advancement. Loyalty, fairness, justice, and compassion are only followed when it is in a person’s best interest. Jesus reminds us that there is no greater love than for a man to lay down his life for his friend. David and Jonathan had that type of relationship.
As Jonathan approached, David bowed down to him 3 times with his face to the ground. (1 Sam.20:41) David humbled himself, honoring Jonathan and his position in the kingdom. They embraced, kissed and wept with David weeping most. They committed their lives and loyalty to one another, pledging their friendship to each other’s descendants.
Their lives would never be the same; David became a fugitive, hiding from Saul and Jonathan went back and served his father. They went their separate ways but their hearts remained united. Relationships like theirs are only birthed out of a heart of compassion, humility and loyalty. Who is your David or Jonathan? Cherish and embrace those friendships. May God give us a David/Jonathan, but greater yet; may we become a David/Jonathan for someone else…