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Sunday, April 6 2014

1 Samuel 20: David and Jonathan

"Jonathan said to David, Go in peace, forasmuch as we have sworn both of us in the name of the LORD, saying, The LORD be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed for ever"

David (from the Hebrew name pronounced daw-veed) and Jonathan (from the Hebrew name pronounced ye-hon-atan - there is no "j" sound in Hebrew i.e. in Hebrew, "Jerusalem" is actually pronounced yer-oo-shaw-lay-im) experienced one of the greatest friendships recorded in the Scriptures. Although there was a substantial age difference between them (David was a boy when he killed Goliath, while Jonathan at that time was a young man - a battle commander in the king's army; see 1 Samuel 14: Jonathan's Sweet Victory), their friendship became like brothers should be when David went to live in King Saul's house, with his son Jonathan, after his victory over Goliath (see 1 Samuel 17: The Battle Of David And Goliath and 1 Samuel 18: The Rise Of David).

As David grew into a young man, he served King Saul very well - so much so that Saul grew jealous and hateful of him. Eventually, Saul turned on his patriotic servant and tried to kill him (see 1 Samuel 19: The Parting of David and Saul). Jonathan, at first, refused to believe it.

David and Jonathan

"20:1 And David fled from Naioth in Ramah [see Naioth In Ramah], and came and said before Jonathan, What have I done? what is mine iniquity? and what is my sin before thy father, that he seeketh my life?

20:2 And he said unto him, God forbid; thou shalt not die: behold, my father will do nothing either great or small, but that he will shew it me: and why should my father hide this thing from me? it is not so.

20:3 And David sware moreover, and said, Thy father certainly knoweth that I have found grace in thine eyes; and he saith, Let not Jonathan know this, lest he be grieved: but truly as the LORD liveth, and as thy soul liveth [see What Does The Bible Really Say About Your Soul?], there is but a step between me and death.

20:4 Then said Jonathan unto David, Whatsoever thy soul desireth, I will even do it for thee." (1 Samuel 20:1-4 KJV)

David and Jonathan then devised a test to provide Jonathan with the evidence that David already knew all too well. It was the beginning of the month (see The New Moon Calendar); the custom was to observe it with a formal dinner with the king. David's deliberate absence would reveal to Jonathan his father's true intent toward David.

"20:5 And David said unto Jonathan, Behold, to morrow is the new moon, and I should not fail to sit with the king at meat: but let me go, that I may hide myself in the field unto the third day at even. 20:6 If thy father at all miss me, then say, David earnestly asked leave of me that he might run to Bethlehem his city: for there is a yearly sacrifice there for all the family. 20:7 If he say thus, It is well; thy servant shall have peace: but if he be very wroth, then be sure that evil is determined by him. 20:8 Therefore thou shalt deal kindly with thy servant; for thou hast brought thy servant into a covenant of the LORD with thee: notwithstanding, if there be in me iniquity, slay me thyself; for why shouldest thou bring me to thy father?

20:9 And Jonathan said, Far be it from thee: for if I knew certainly that evil were determined by my father to come upon thee, then would not I tell it thee?

20:10 Then said David to Jonathan, Who shall tell me? or what if thy father answer thee roughly?

20:11 And Jonathan said unto David, Come, and let us go out into the field. And they went out both of them into the field.

20:12 And Jonathan said unto David, O LORD God of Israel, when I have sounded my father about to morrow any time, or the third day, and, behold, if there be good toward David, and I then send not unto thee, and shew it thee; 20:13 The LORD do so and much more to Jonathan: but if it please my father to do thee evil, then I will shew it thee, and send thee away, that thou mayest go in peace: and the LORD be with thee, as he hath been with my father. 20:14 And thou shalt not only while yet I live shew me the kindness of the LORD, that I die not: 20:15 But also thou shalt not cut off thy kindness from my house for ever: no, not when the LORD hath cut off the enemies of David every one from the face of the earth.

20:16 So Jonathan made a covenant with the house of David, saying, Let the LORD even require it at the hand of David's enemies. 20:17 And Jonathan caused David to swear again, because he loved him: for he loved him as he loved his own soul.

20:18 Then Jonathan said to David, To morrow is the new moon: and thou shalt be missed, because thy seat will be empty. 20:19 And when thou hast stayed three days, then thou shalt go down quickly, and come to the place where thou didst hide thyself when the business was in hand, and shalt remain by the stone Ezel. 20:20 And I will shoot three arrows on the side thereof, as though I shot at a mark. 20:21 And, behold, I will send a lad, saying, Go, find out the arrows. If I expressly say unto the lad, Behold, the arrows are on this side of thee, take them; then come thou: for there is peace to thee, and no hurt; as the LORD liveth. 20:22 But if I say thus unto the young man, Behold, the arrows are beyond thee; go thy way: for the LORD hath sent thee away. 20:23 And as touching the matter which thou and I have spoken of, behold, the LORD be between thee and me for ever." (1 Samuel 20:5-23 KJV)

It happened just as David knew that it would. It was a sad and shocking experience for Jonathan, who nevertheless remained in his father's service for the few remaining years of his life. It would be one of the last times that David and Jonathan saw each other. The civil war was about to begin (see Israel In History and Prophecy: The Civil War), while at the same time wars with the Philistines were being fought. The civil war would end when Jonathan died with his father in battle against the Philistines (see the Fact Finder question below).

Crescent Moon

"20:24 So David hid himself in the field: and when the new moon was come, the king sat him down to eat meat. 20:25 And the king sat upon his seat, as at other times, even upon a seat by the wall: and Jonathan arose, and Abner sat by Saul's side, and David's place was empty. 20:26 Nevertheless Saul spake not any thing that day: for he thought, Something hath befallen him, he is not clean; surely he is not clean. 20:27 And it came to pass on the morrow, which was the second day of the month, that David's place was empty: and Saul said unto Jonathan his son, Wherefore cometh not the son of Jesse to meat, neither yesterday, nor to day?

20:28 And Jonathan answered Saul, David earnestly asked leave of me to go to Bethlehem: 20:29 And he said, Let me go, I pray thee; for our family hath a sacrifice in the city; and my brother, he hath commanded me to be there: and now, if I have found favour in thine eyes, let me get away, I pray thee, and see my brethren. Therefore he cometh not unto the king's table.

20:30 Then Saul's anger was kindled against Jonathan, and he said unto him, Thou son of the perverse rebellious woman, do not I know that thou hast chosen the son of Jesse to thine own confusion, and unto the confusion of thy mother's nakedness? 20:31 For as long as the son of Jesse liveth upon the ground, thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom. Wherefore now send and fetch him unto me, for he shall surely die.

20:32 And Jonathan answered Saul his father, and said unto him, Wherefore shall he be slain? what hath he done? 20:33 And Saul cast a javelin at him to smite him: whereby Jonathan knew that it was determined of his father to slay David.

20:34 So Jonathan arose from the table in fierce anger, and did eat no meat the second day of the month: for he was grieved for David, because his father had done him shame.

20:35 And it came to pass in the morning, that Jonathan went out into the field at the time appointed with David, and a little lad with him. 20:36 And he said unto his lad, Run, find out now the arrows which I shoot. And as the lad ran, he shot an arrow beyond him. 20:37 And when the lad was come to the place of the arrow which Jonathan had shot, Jonathan cried after the lad, and said, Is not the arrow beyond thee? 20:38 And Jonathan cried after the lad, Make speed, haste, stay not. And Jonathan's lad gathered up the arrows, and came to his master. 20:39 But the lad knew not any thing: only Jonathan and David knew the matter. 20:40 And Jonathan gave his artillery unto his lad, and said unto him, Go, carry them to the city.

20:41 And as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of a place toward the south, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they kissed one another, and wept one with another, until David exceeded.

20:42 And Jonathan said to David, Go in peace, forasmuch as we have sworn both of us in the name of the LORD, saying, The LORD be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed for ever. And he arose and departed: and Jonathan went into the city." (1 Samuel 20:24-42 KJV)

Fact Finder: Did Saul die with the physical armour that he tried to give to David for his battle with Goliath? What happened to Goliath's armour too?
See The Armour Of Goliath and Saul


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This Day In History, April 6

646 BC: The earliest total solar eclipse recorded by humans was made, by the Greeks (see also The Sun In History And Prophecy).

46 BC: Julius Caesar defeated Caecilius Metellus Scipio and Marcus Porcius Cato (Cato the Younger) at the battle of Thapsus (see also A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars).

402: Alaric, chief of the Visigoths (a Germanic people), after invading Italy was defeated at Pollentia by Roman General Flavius Stilicho. The Germanic people eventually superseded the original the Roman Empire as the "Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation" (see The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).

1199: King Richard I (Richard the Lion-hearted) of England died at age 41 from an infected arrow wound that he suffered during the siege of the castle of Chaluz in France.

1250: During the Seventh Crusade (see also Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy), the Ayyubids of Egypt captured King Louis IX of France at the Battle of Fariskur.

1320: Scots reaffirmed their independence with the Declaration of Arbroath.

Britain
1384: The Battle of Atoleiros, a Portuguese victory over the Castilians.

1385: John, the Master of the Order of Aviz, became king John I of Portugal.

1453: The Sultan of the Ottoman Empire, Mehmed II ("Mehmed the Conqueror") began his siege of Constantinople (the city was named after the Roman Emperor Constantine; see also Constantine's Crusades In History And Prophecy). The Ottoman Empire (centered in Turkey) occupied the land of Israel for centuries until it was liberated by British forces at the end of the First World War (see A History Of Jerusalem: The British Mandate and Israel's Wars In The Twentieth Century).

1652: Dutch sailor Jan van Riebeeck established a resupply station that eventually became Cape Town, South Africa.

1663: King Charles II signed the Carolina Charter ("Carolina" is from Carolus, the Latin form of Charles).

1748: The ruins of Pompei, Italy, were discovered.

1814: Napoleon abdicated in favor of his young son, but Russia, Prussia, Austria and Britain reject it; the French senate didn't recognize the child's title and called the Bourbon Louis XVIII to the throne instead. Napoleon then abdicated unconditionally and was sent into exile on the island of Elba.

1868: Mormon leader Brigham Young, 67, married his 27th, and last, wife. In all, his wives bore him 47 children.

1909: Robert Peary and Matthew Henson reached the North Pole.

1917: The U.S. declared war on Germany and entered the First World War (1916-1918). The war began the previous year, in 1916.

1939: Britain signed a military alliance with Poland. The Second World War began a few months later, in September 1939, when Germany invaded Poland (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars).

1965: The launch of "Early Bird," the first communications satellite in geosynchronous orbit i.e. with a counter-orbit of 24 hours so that it stays in the same position over the earth.

1998: Pakistan developed ballistic missiles for its nuclear arsenal.



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