The Story of 1 Samuel | Jonathan And David’s Friendship | 1 Samuel 20.35-42 |

by | Nov 2, 2020

“In the morning Jonathan went out to the field for his meeting with David. He had a small boy with him, 36 and he said to the boy, “Run and find the arrows I shoot.” As the boy ran, he shot an arrow beyond him. 37 When the boy came to the place where Jonathan’s arrow had fallen, Jonathan called out after him, “Isn’t the arrow beyond you?” 38 Then he shouted, “Hurry! Go quickly! Don’t stop!” The boy picked up the arrow and returned to his master. 39 (The boy knew nothing about all this; only Jonathan and David knew.) 40 Then Jonathan gave his weapons to the boy and said, “Go, carry them back to town.” 41 After the boy had gone, David got up from the south side of the stone and bowed down before Jonathan three times, with his face to the ground. Then they kissed each other and wept together—but David wept the most. 42 Jonathan said to David, “Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the Lord, saying, ‘The Lord is witness between you and me, and between your descendants and my descendants forever.’” Then David left, and Jonathan went back to the town.[b]” 1 Samuel 20.35-42

What a friendship! The bond of David and Jonathan wasn’t only formed against King Saul but also in battle and for the Lord. Jonathan loved David like his own self and David returned the love. These two “brothers’” friendship and love was born out of favor of the Lord and godly respect.

David was being forced to leave his new life in the palace in Jerusalem as well as his friend Jonathan. Because Saul wanted David dead, he could no longer remain in the city. Jonathan’s scheme to confirm that David was in danger involved this classic scene of him shooting arrows and using a small boy to retrieve them. The distance with which he shot the arrow and the words that Jonathan spoke, “Hurry! Go quickly! Don’t stop,” was David’s signal that it was not safe to remain.

And when it was time to say goodbye David bowed down before Jonathan and wept, kissing each other as was the custom, and swearing friendship in the name of the Lord with the Lord as the witness.” The parting of these two friends and their friendship would never be the same again. Jonathan would leave to serve his father the King and David would go into hiding until his time to take the throne which God had ordained.

Goodbyes are hard. Whether it is saying goodbye to a pet, a friend who is moving or a family member who has died, goodbyes are difficult. God gives us the ability to love and care for others and parting from those loved ones can be painful. And although there will be goodbyes, and people will leave, the Lord never leaves. Jesus said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” The Lord is the one constant factor in all of our lives. Life will change, we will grow old and eventually died — but the Word of the Lord remains forever.

The love of friendship shared between David and Jonathan is intended for us to love one another with the love of the Lord. Let’s take the opportunity today to love those who are near us and remind them that they are loved by God both now and for all times.

“O Lord God, it’s such a moving story! Seeing these “brothers” express such love for one another is just a glimpse of the love that you express to us. Come now, Holy Spirit, fill us with your power and love. Help us know the truth of your Word and the power in the Cross. That greater love has no one than this than to lay his life down for his friends. Thank you Jesus for those words and for loving us with an everlasting love. For you are good and your love endures forever.” Amen