May 11

May 11

Jonathan Helps David — The friendship of Jonathan, David, & Jesus.

Today’s Readings:

Reading 1: 1 Samuel 20

Reading 2: Proverbs 27:4-10

Reading 3: John 15:12-17

The downward spiral of Saul’s reign continues, affecting both his own family and David. But in the midst of Saul’s mistrust, jealousy, and rage, David and Jonathan deepen their friendship.

It is interesting to read small details with great significance – such as Saul’s place at the feast being against the wall (a perfect location for a king who trusts no-one). Abner, the commander of the army sits beside him to protect him and Jonathan (who Saul now mistrusts just as much as David) has to sit opposite the king, where every action can be observed.

Notice too, when Jonathan explains David’s absence, how Saul’s reaction is full of venom and totally out of proportion to the imagined offense. Here is a man who needs psychiatric help (or heartfelt repentance)!  The writer of the Proverbs diagnoses Saul accurately: “Anger is cruel, and wrath is like a flood, but jealousy is even more dangerous.”

Jonathan knows when he helps David, and tells him to escape, that he may never see him again. Jonathan is the son of the king who has been rejected by God for his sins. David is the man after God’s own heart whom God has chosen as the next king. Although Jonathan’s heart is on David’s side, the realities of the situation place him on Saul’s side, and so the friendship is effectively terminated, but not before the two men pledge loyalty to God and to each other.

This pledge, at the price of their lives, foreshadows Jesus’ loyalty to His disciples (and by extension His followers in years to come). Although we are His servants and He is our Lord, He calls us friends and willingly lays down His life for us. What loyalty, what a Savior!

Have a great day!

Mark.