Welcome back to the fire place! On Monday, we continued our series on My Life and My Friend by considering the life of David and Jonathan and how they prospered as friends. I am assured you have learnt some lessons from Monday’s episode. Today, we will be wrapping the friendship journey of David and Jonathan just as we promised on Monday. In this episode, we shall base our discussion on the last two meetings of David and Jonathan before the sudden and sorrowful death of Jonathan. Get ready to learn the codes and laws of friendship once again! Enjoy!
The journey of friendship will not always be rosy and sweet. Just like life is full of ups and downs, friendship also moves in that dimension. As we pass through seasons in our lives, our true friends move with us as we pass through those moments of uncertainty. Any friend that can stay with you in your trying moments also deserve to sit with you on the throne! There are such friends that stands firm even more than blood relations! God already position them at different points of our lives. It is our job to recognize them and form that formidable force with them that will make us last through every season of our lives. There came a time in the life of David when it was obvious that King Saul was after his life, from our story on Monday as recorded in 1 Samuel 20:1-9, David and Jonathan struck a deal to save David’s life. In the process of Jonathan fulfilling his side of the deal by standing in for David when King Saul noticed his absence in the customary New Moon dinner with the King, a unique but deciding test of friendship surfaced!
King Saul detected the foul play done by David and Jonathan, he got the gist that Jonathan was preventing him from harming David. In 1 Samuel 20:30-31; “Then Saul’s anger was aroused against Jonathan, and he said to him, “You son of a perverse, rebellious woman! Do I not know that you have chosen the son of Jesse to your own shame and to the shame of your mother’s nakedness? For as long as the son of Jesse lives on the earth, you shall not be established, nor your kingdom. Now therefore, send and bring him to me, for he shall surely die.” This was a brave and serious move by King Saul as he hit the nail about the whole issue. He already decided that David must die if Jonathan’s succession will be possible after his death. Now, Jonathan had a seemingly good reason to join his father on his wicked mission to terminate the life of David; yet Jonathan chose David over his father and his evil intentions! Wow! He stood his ground and glued to his covenant of friendship with David even though it meant going against his father, the King! He passed the test of true friendship especially because David was absented in that meeting. Who stays with you in times of trouble matters! Here we saw Prince Jonathan standing with a commoner with extra-ordinary grace and virtues even though it means risking his claim to the throne! This is the apex of trust in friendship! You must find your Jonathan!
Who stays with you in times of trouble matters!
In His fury, Saul almost killed Jonathan as he threw a spear at him. The bible recorded that Jonathan left the feast angrily not because of any other important reason but because of how deep his father plan to kill David! Who forgets himself and all that he stands for and begin to run the course of another person? True friends like Jonathan does that! Truly, he loved David as his own soul. Later in that verse, Jonathan returned to the plains to give word to David about his father. It was evident that King Saul was determined to kill David, so right there they wept together and renewed their covenant of friendship after which David fled for his dear life. This chapter of the bible described Jonathan’s characteristics of friendship in four ways: he was available at the time of need of David. He was dependable, he stood for David even in his absence even when he had every reason to associate with his Father’s evil. He was vulnerable, he dared his father and risked being rough handed by his own father just for the sake of David. He sealed his love by being responsible! He came to give words back to David so he would run for his life. Jonathan was a true friend of David. We all need friends of such in our lives as we walk through the journey of life! Do you have a friend like Jonathan in your life already?
Furthermore, after David’s departure from Saul’s presence and his ordeal in the wilderness, cave of Adullam and his restless journey to move as far as possible from the reach of Saul’s cruelty. Prince Jonathan still found his way to David which can be recalled as their final meeting before Jonathan’s death. In 1 Samuel 23; while King Saul was still pursuing the life of David in the wilderness, Jonathan went to David in the woods and “strengthened his hand in God!”. The words of Jonathan in this last meeting revealed the prophetic testimony of Jonathan, he knew what God was about to do in the life of his friend! He saw it ahead too, just like David. “And he said to him, “Do not fear, for the hand of Saul my father shall not find you. You shall be king over Israel, and I shall be next to you. Even my father Saul knows that.” 1 Samuel 23:17 . Jonathan knew exactly where they were going together! He understood the vision of God for David’s life. This is a quality that is scarce! He was not indifferent about the situation, neither was he ignorant, rather he knew exactly what is going on! He was not about to be the rival of David, he accepted his place in the God-ordained vision of God for David.
Whoever cannot see where God is taking you to is not permitted to be a partaker of it! Everyone that partook in the supernatural success of others in the bible saw it ahead! Rahab saw ahead that Jericho was already a defeated city ever before the Israelites got there, so she connected with the God of Israel and by faith she became a partaker of the covenant she never knew its origin! What about Abigail, the wife of Nabal the fool. She prophesied into the future of David and associated with it, she practically walked herself into the future kingdom of David just by connecting with what she saw! What do you see in your friends? Have you paid the sacrifice of staying with anyone in their wilderness experience? Have you obtained a testament with anyone that warrants you to partake in the glory that God is landing on them? If you don’t sow the seed of connecting with what God wants to do with a man, you are not qualified to enjoy the benefits.
Whoever cannot see where God is taking you to is not permitted to be a partaker of it!
Jonathan feared God! He strengthened the hand of David in the Lord. Can your friends stand in the gap for you in prayer? Any friend that can’t join hands with you in prayer of agreement is not your true friend! There are no two things about true friendship. It is either the person is there with you or the person is not there! Don’t settle for less! If the friend is not here yet, then keep praying for one and keep being a true friend to those God placed in your life. Whenever friends pray together, it is a form of renewal, God will always keep them together! Associating with the down moments of David came with a serious price for Jonathan thereby practicing the law of Sacrifice. If all that you do for others is at your convenience at all times then you are not sacrificial! Whoever we claim to love, we go the extra mile to make sure they are comfortable. That is friendship! The sacrifice of time, gifts, attention, and so on are always present in true friendship.
If all that you do for others is at your convenience at all times then you are not sacrificial!
Finally, before the end of David’s waiting period, Jonathan died with his father and his other sons in battle. What a tragic way to end a life of sacrifice and commitment! Jonathan did not live to see the golden days of David which he saw from afar, yet his faithfulness in friendship will never be forgotten! David mourned for Jonathan and Saul for days. Jonathan graciously accepted God’s choice of David as the next ruler of Israel and supported him, honoured him and wanted the very best for him. David called Jonathan his brother! That was a love more wonderful than the love of a woman! Jonathan was more than a friend to David. He was his life saver, his destiny helper and burden bearer.
He stayed with him through it all, acknowledging the superiority and kingship of David over himself, the supposed heir to Saul’s throne. Jonathan saw evil in his father and failed to stand with it. He clearly chose sides with David against his father’s goodwill. Jonathan truly knew the Lord! This is his greatest testimony, that he was faithful as David’s friend till his last breath. What will you do about friendship? This is a life changing story. I believe when the principles and lessons learnt from this series are applied, you will live a better life of friendship to the glory of God and betterment of our society. I wish you a meaningful stay in this world! Get ready for Monday’s Episode. God bless you!