Focal passage: 1 Samuel 18:1-4; 19:4-7; 20:10-13
Some of my closest friends are people that I met in college and lived with in the university dormitories. As I look back, these friendships were formed almost instantaneously and deepened with time. Deep friendships are often forged in such ways.
First Samuel 18:1 tells us, “When David had finished speaking with Saul, Jonathan committed himself to David, and loved him as much as he loved himself” (HCSB).
There is really no introduction to Jonathan or explanation for David’s friendship with him. All we are told is that after David killed Goliath, Saul brought David into the royal household (1 Samuel 18:2) and David and Jonathan quickly became friends.
But what was it that caused David and Jonathan to remain lifelong friends? Their friendship, like all true friendships, was based on commitment. After all, David and Jonathan’s commitment is seen in the covenant that they made with one another (1 Samuel 18:3).
Commitment is not just a word; it is an action.
For David and Jonathan, their friendship commitment was expressed through concern and care for one another. For example, Jonathan was concerned for David’s welfare in several ways.
He gave David special armor to protect him on the battlefield (1 Samuel 18:4), and he defended David verbally (1 Samuel 19:4-7) as well as physically (1 Samuel 20:10-13).
David and Jonathan had a shared commitment to their friendship and that resulted in Jonathan and David always acting in the other’s best interest.
Does that describe your relationships with others? Are you committed to others and similar causes? Are you a friend that others can depend on?
If you bash your friends behind their backs, berate them or fail to help them in their time of need, you are not a true friend. God desires that we should act as friends to others because He has demonstrated the ultimate act of friendship toward us in dying for our sins (John 15:13).
All of us know that it is sometimes hard to find true friends in life, but the best place to start is to heed the advice of Proverbs 18:24, “A man that hath friends must shew himself friendly” (KJV).