David consults Jonathan. (1-10) Jonathan's covenant with
David. (11-23) Saul, missing David, seeks to kill Jonathan.
(24-34) Jonathan takes leave of David. (35-42)
The trials David met with, prepared him for future
advancement. Thus the Lord deals with those whom he prepares
unto glory. He does not put them into immediate possession of
the kingdom, but leads them to it through much tribulation,
which he makes the means of fitting them for it. Let them not
murmur at his gracious appointment, nor distrust his care; but
let them look forward with joyful expectation to the crown which
is laid up for them. Sometimes it appears to us that there is
but a step between us and death; at all times it may be so, and
we should prepare for the event. But though dangers appear most
threatening, we cannot die till the purpose of God concerning us
is accomplished; nor till we have served our generation
according to his will, if we are believers. Jonathan generously
offers David his services. This is true friendship. Thus Christ
testifies his love to us, Ask, and it shall be done for you; and
we must testify our love to him, by keeping his commandments.
Jonathan faithfully promises that he would let David know
how he found his father affected towards him. It will be
kindness to ourselves and to ours, to secure an interest in
those whom God favours, and to make his friends ours. True
friendship rests on a firm basis, and is able to silence
ambition, self-love, and undue regard for others. But who can
fully understand the love of Jesus, who gave himself as a
sacrifice for rebellious, polluted sinners! how great then ought
to be the force and effects of our love to him, to his cause,
and his people!
None were more constant than David in attending holy
duties; nor had he been absent, but self-preservation obliged
him to withdraw. In great peril present opportunities for Divine
ordinances may be waved. But it is bad for us, except in case of
necessity, to omit any opportunity of statedly attending on
them. Jonathan did wisely and well for himself and family, to
secure an interest in David, yet for this he is blamed. It is
good to take God's people for our people. It will prove to our
advantage at last, however it may now be thought against our
interest. Saul was outrageous. What savage beasts, and worse,
does anger make men!
The separation of two such faithful friends was grievous
to both, but David's case was the more deplorable, for David was
leaving all his comforts, even those of God's sanctuary.
Christians need not sorrow, as men without hope; but being one
with Christ, they are one with each other, and will meet in his
presence ere long, to part no more; to meet where all tears
shall be wiped from their eyes.