Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. 1 Samuel 18:3
Northern Spain produced a beautiful way of expressing communion and friendship. With the countryside full of handmade caves, after each harvest some farmers would sit in a room built above a cave and inventory their various foods. As time passed, the room became known as the “telling room”—a place of communion where friends and families would gather to share their stories, secrets, and dreams. If you needed the intimate company of safe friends, you would head for the telling room.
Had they lived in northern Spain, the deep friendship shared by Jonathan and David might have led them to create a telling room. When King Saul became so jealous that he wanted to kill David, Jonathan, Saul’s oldest son, protected and befriended him. The two became “one in spirit” (1 Samuel 18:1). And Jonathan “loved him as himself” (vv. 1, 3) and—though he was heir apparent to the throne—recognized David’s divine selection to be king. He gave David his robe, sword, bow, and belt (v. 4). Later, David declared that Jonathan’s deep love for him as a friend was wonderful (2 Samuel 1:26).
As believers in Jesus, may He help us build our own relational “telling rooms”—friendships that reflect Christlike love and care. Let’s take the time to linger with friends, open our hearts, and live in true communion with one another in Him.
What kinds of commitments have you made to your friends? How can you express your love to them this week?
Dear God, please help me to pursue vulnerable, loving, and authentic friendships.
For further study, read A Torrent of Justice: Building Relationships of Love and Kindness.
We first read of Jonathan, King Saul’s oldest son, in 1 Samuel 13–14, 18–20. Jonathan was a valiant soldier. In a heroic move, Jonathan and his armorbearer went against the Philistines at Mikmash and singlehandedly killed twenty men. Saul and his men joined the battle, and God led the Israelites to victory (13:23–14:23). Earlier, Saul had made the rash oath, “Cursed be anyone who eats food before evening comes, before I have avenged myself on my enemies!” (14:24). So, his men went into battle hungry. But Jonathan hadn’t been around to hear the oath and had refreshed himself with honey while pursuing the enemy. Fortunately, the soldiers prevented Saul from carrying out his foolish oath (vv. 41–45). In today’s text, we learn of Jonathan and David’s friendship. Jonathan put David ahead of his own interests and saved him from Saul’s attempt to kill him (ch. 20).