David and Jonathan are some of the best friends recorded in history. They would have done anything for each other, as we see in the portion of their story I will share with you today!
This part of David’s life opens with King Saul suddenly becoming very jealous of David, because of his success in battle and love from the people. Saul plots with his son Jonathan and his servants to kill David, but as I mentioned, Jonathan and David are best friends; Jonathan hurries to tell David about his father’s scheme.
Saul my father seeketh to kill thee: now therefore, I pray thee, take heed to thyself until the morning, and abide in a secret place, and hide thyself: -1 Samuel 19:3b, KJV
Jonathan urges David to hide from Saul, and tells him that he will talk to the king and persuade him to let David live. He does as he said and convinces Saul not to kill David. In fact, Jonathan gets him to swear by it. Jonathan calls David to let him know it’s all right, and brings him back to the king.
Things are peaceful for a while, but then another war with the Philistines begins. David is so mighty in battle that the Philistines flee in terror, and a jealous spirit comes over Saul again.
And the evil spirit from the LORD was upon Saul, and he sat in his house with his javelin in his hand: and David played with his hand. And Saul sought to smite David even to the wall with the javelin; but he slipped away out of Saul’s presence, and he smote the javelin into the wall: And David fled, and escaped that night. -1 Samuel 19:9-10, KJV
Saul sends messengers to David’s house to kill him, but David’s brave wife Michal (Saul’s daughter, no less) had let him out of the window and positioned a pillow in where David would be lying. She explains to the messengers that David is sick, but eventually they figure it out and discover that he isn’t there at all.
After thinking he had found refuge and fleeing for his life again, David finally journeys back to his best friend Jonathan. David is at his wits’ end.
And David fled from Naioth in Ramah, and came and said before Jonathan, What have I done? what is mine iniquity? and what is my sin before thy father, that he seeketh my life? -1 Samuel 20:1, KJV
Jonathan comforts him and tells him that surely him father would tell him if he was planning anything else against David, so not to worry. But David argues that Saul has probably figured out by now that they are friends. He is so scared, he fears that there is but a step between him, and death. Together, they devise a plan to tell whether or not Saul still wants him dead. Jonathan and David make a covenant (very serious promise) to each other that basically they will always be honest with one another. The Bible says they loved each other as their own souls.
Their plan was to have Jonathan find out what Saul’s intent was and then in the morning go shoot some arrows. He will take a lad with him to fetch the arrows. If Jonathan tells the boy that he already passed the arrows, and to turn around and find them, that means Saul is at peace with David. But if he tells the boy that the arrows are ahead of him, and to run forward to get them, that means just the opposite.
When Jonathan went shooting in the morning, he told the lad the arrows were ahead of him. When the boy returns with the arrows, he sends him away into the city. David, who was watching from a hiding place, comes out to meet Jonathan and they weep together, knowing that they may never see each other again.
And Jonathan said to David, Go in peace, forasmuch as we have sworn both of us in the name of the LORD, saying, The LORD be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed forever. And he arose and departed: and Jonathan went into the city. -1 Samuel 20:42, KJV
This is such an amazing example of real friendship. The Bible is full of amazing things like this! What did you learn from this story? What is your favorite Bible story? Have you ever had a friendship like Jonathan and David’s? Comment below; I’d love to hear about it!
Thanks for reading! God bless y’all, BBG