1 Samuel 20
Jonathan loved David as
he loved himself (v.17).
When Matt Damon hit it big in Hollywood, he
bought two Jeep Grand Cherokees—one
for him, and one for his best buddy, Ben
Affleck. In an interview with People magazine, he said,
“That was our dream car. We flipped a coin on the
color. We both wanted hunter green and I won; he got
black.” I had to smile when I read that story. Friends
dream together. Friends celebrate together. Friends stick
When David and Jonathan first met, “there was an
immediate bond between them” (1 Samuel 18:1). They
remained close even though Jonathan’s father, King Saul,
wanted to kill David. Unfortunately, Jonathan had to
choose between loyalty to his father and his best friend.
He picked David, exclaiming, “Tell me what I can do to
help you!” (20:4). Jonathan then helped David escape
from Saul. A genuine friend is a loyal friend.
A true ally will also set aside his or her interests
to support you—competition won’t corrode your
relationship. Jonathan wanted David to be the king of
Israel, even though, as his father so crudely pointed out
(v.30), Jonathan should have been the next ruler.
Despite the extreme pressure on their friendship,
Jonathan trekked out to visit his pal in the hill country of
Ziph, where David was hiding from Saul. During their
wilderness outing, Jonathan “encouraged [David] to stay strong in his faith in
God” (1 Samuel 23:16). True friends make time to spiritually spur each other on.
Reading about David and Jonathan made me wonder, Am I a good friend?
Jonathan’s unwavering loyalty, humility, and commitment to David inspired me
to look for more ways to serve my friends. While no relationship is perfect,
friendship works best when we follow Jonathan’s example: “Jonathan loved
David as he loved himself” (20:17). —Jennifer Benson Schudlt
What might you do to
improve an existing
friendship? How do
your current friendships
compare to David and
Friends - Michael W. Smith