Read: 1 Samuel 20:1-42
Jonathan said to David, “Whatever you want me to do, I’ll do for you.” 1 Samuel 20:4
This is a sad chapter in the lives of Saul, Jonathan and David. David goes to Jonathan convinced that Saul is intent on putting him to death. David is seeking to learn what he has done to cause Saul to feel this way toward him. Jonathan cannot believe his ears. It is simply inconceivable to Jonathan that Saul has actually gone back on his word, after he promised that he would not put David to death (19:6). David is determined to convince Jonathan that his fears are not paranoid delusions, as were Saul’s fears. So he takes an oath to assure Jonathan he is telling the truth.
As the Lord works on Jonathan it becomes abundantly clear that Saul is intent on killing David. This intent is so gripping that Saul might even kill his own son if he gets in the way. This acceptance of reality is a significant turning point in the relationship between David and Jonathan and between David and Saul. David put his covenant friendship with Jonathan to the test. He does so by putting his life in Jonathan’s hand. It is the occasion for a confirmation of the covenant between David and Jonathan and also of a very sad parting. Yet there are some bright spots in this gloomy chapter, and some very important lessons we can learn from our study on these verses of scripture.
We can see that this chapter is a significant turning point in terms of David’s relationship with Saul and with Jonathan. One word sums up what this chapter is all about, and that word is covenant. David flees to Jonathan, at a very desperate moment in his life, because they have a covenant relationship, which assures David of Jonathan’s love and support. This covenant of mutual love and good will is the reason Jonathan takes David so seriously that he is willing to carry out David’s test.
As you know Saul fails the test, but David and Jonathan pass the test, because of the covenant they made with each other. This covenant between David & Jonathan is the basis & guiding principle of the relationship between these men.
It’s one thing to TELL A FRIEND YOU CARE. It’s quite another to show it. When David and Jonathan made a pact of friendship ( l Sam. 18:1-4), neither of them knew to what extent Jonathan would have to go to show his care for David. But it didn’t matter. Undaunted by danger, Jonathan courageously acted to save David’s life (20:1-23).
When we develop close friendships we may also be called on to demonstrate, by our actions, that we care. The acrostic C-A-R-E can help us remember four key elements of friendship.
C – Challenge your friend to grow spiritually. A good friend knows the importance of turning the conversation toward matters of faith (Proverbs 27:17).
A – Affirm your friend’s value. A phone call or text can let your friend know how important they are to you and can keep your friendship strong.
R – Respect the feelings and wishes of your friend. No one wants a friend with whom ideas, dreams, and concerns fall on deaf ears. A good friend is a great sounding board.
E – Encourage your friend. We all need that! Right?? I sure do!
Do you have a friend you should care for this week? If you see a friend in need – be a friend in deed.
Father, thank you for friends! Thank you for those who you have put in my life to make me a better person. Forgive me when I have not been the help or encouragement that I should have been. Help me to be the friend I need to be. Help me to be first loyal to you and then loyal to the awesome friends you have put in my life. Show me ways, this day, that I can challenge, affirm, respect, and encourage those who I call friend. I pray this in the name of Jesus.