Tag: Jesus calls us friends!
Scripture reading for March 23rd: 1st Samuel 20-23
Close friends are hard to come by. Over the years I have had several close friends whom I have shared my heart and life with. The one closer than any other has been my wife of nearly 42 years. We have shared life together and are friends as well as covenant partners. We share a love and respect for each other and have vowed to be true to one another before God as long as we live.
In today’s reading, we have the story of David and Jonathan and their deep friendship. By the way, some have tried to read into this relationship something sexual. The Bible in no way implies that there is anything sexual about this friendship. Their hearts were knit to one another and they made a covenant of friendship. (1st Samuel 18:1-3) In this covenant, they exchanged clothes and weapons and vowed faithfulness. This covenant friendship was a gift of God that helped save David’s life on more than one occasion.
In our reading today, Jonathan helps David to avoid the wrath of the evil spirit that is on his father Saul. Jonathan and David renew their covenant in a field. Jonathan promises to warn David of the intentions of his own father if he discovers that his father is planning to harm David. (1st Samuel 20:12-16) He later finds that to be true and clandestinely meets David again in the field. They part company with tears and promises to be true to each other, even to succeeding generations! (1st Samuel 20:42)
As we look at this amazing friendship, I am thinking of Jesus Christ and His promise of eternal friendship to us. “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command.” (John 15:13-14a) Jesus made a covenant of eternal friendship with us through His death on the cross on our behalf. He took the punishment we deserved by taking on our sins and offenses, thereby saving our life. He gives us His robe of righteousness and His weapons in exchange! He promises to show covenant favor to succeeding generations of my offspring if I am faithful to Him! He is a friend who sticks closer than a brother! What amazing love the father has given to us through his Son, Jesus Christ!