Jonathan was the kind of son any parent (and particularly King Saul) would have been proud of. Yet, he held the difficult position of balancing his respect and honour for his father, who was also King, on the one hand, and his friendship and loyalty to David whom he knew was the Lord’s “anointed”, whilst knowing of his father’s intention to kill David!
What is commendable about Jonathan was his complete selflessness. He was the King’s son and rightful heir to the Throne of Israel, and he could have tried to hold on to what was naturally and rightfully his. Instead, having recognised that God was with David, he bowed to God’s sovereignty and, in humility, stepped aside in favour of David. A lesser man would have felt usurped and would probably have been jealous, angry or even bitter that someone else – in this case his best friend – was about to acquire his royal inheritance.
There was no sign of greed or avarice in this young man Jonathan. He was not greedy for wealth or gain and he did not pursue the fame, pomp and ceremony that came with the trappings of royalty. In fact there is no sign of a wrong heart attitude at all.
He honoured his father, Saul, and wasn’t angry/bitter with his father for getting it wrong, though Saul’s disobedience to God cost Jonathan the Throne of Israel. Indeed, Jonathan died fighting shoulder to shoulder with Saul, honouring his father until the day of his death.
Although he never became king, Jonathan’s integrity and his fear of the Lord and loyalty to God’s anointed, secured his own son’s inheritance (Mephibosheth) and that of future generations of his family, through this very same friendship with David.
We often aspire to being like David, “men and women after God’s own heart”, but we can also aspire to be like Jonathan, the noble son of King Saul. Today, we can prefer and honour one another recognising the anointing of God on our brothers and sisters in the Lord, knowing that Christ died and shed his precious blood for each one of them.
Prayer: Dear Heavenly Father, help us to prefer and honour one another like Jonathan did, and like our Lord Jesus who gave His precious life for us. In Jesus Name. Amen.
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