Such is the Sovereignty of God
One night at dinner Pastor Stanley noted that for him one of the saddest parts in the bible is when Jonathan (King Saul's son) dies. I have been reading through the Old Testament for one of my seminary classes and i was reading 1 Samuel today and the story of the incredible friendship between David and Jonathon brought tears to my eyes. what an incredible example of what a Godly friendship should be!!
1 Samuel 20: 17 says, in my own words: ..and he cared for David as he did for himself. and because of this he hides the truth about his friends whereabouts to his murderous father. ....and we're talking REALLy murderous here: in chapter 22 King Saul kills/has his men kill 85 priests! who were completely innocent but helped out David.
and then in chapter 23:17 Jonathan goes on to say the following: (keep in mind HE is the son of the king, HE should rightfully be next in line for the throne)...: Dont be afraid, that my father with catch you. YOU WILL BE KING OF ISREAL. and I will be SECOND. and my father knows it.
wow! talk about defining love! Jonathan recognized that David was God's annointed and not only was that okay with him, but he was happy and supportive of his friend! how often have I gotten jealous when one of my close friends excells where i fail, or gets recognized and i dont. Jonathan is such an example of self-lessness! He even put his own life in danger of his father's wrath on several occasions to protect his friend. If it came down to it would i really die in the place of a friend? i hope i would... and then there's this buisness about loving David as he loved himself. Too often we use that kind of phrase freely, but the bible doesnt exaggerate. He really loved and cared about his friend as he would for his own body.
8 short chapters later.... 31:2 says that the Philistines went following Saul to kill him and they killed his sons Jonathan, and the others... and they later kill Saul in verse 4. .......and just like that Davids best friend dies, with his worthless father (who's life story is an equal tragedy!) and his brothers, of whom we hear nothing good about. Such is the soverignty of God. "the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh, blessed be the name of the Lord" -Job. i hope David was thinking along those lines when he heard the tragic news.....
another wall-of-fame-er from 1 Samuel that i took time to admire today was Abigail. How i wish the Bible included more details on this woman's life! I read her two word description in 25: 3 "Beautiful and Intelligent" and im just dying to know more!! I presume it was through an arranged marriage that she ended up with such a horrible husband Nabal who in contrast is described as "lazy and of bad conduct". She must have been a woman of incredible faith to live with that; so when she hears how he insulted David, and how David is gonna come and kill him (I personally would be thinking: HORRAY!) what does she do? she gathers together food enough to feed them all and goes out and bows herself down all the way on the ground before him and says 25:24: "my lord, its MY FAULT." and asks him to forgive the sins of this slothful, wicked husband of hers. !! Wowie!! What character! what forgiveness, what love, what a God we have!! and God allows that her husband die of a heart attack soon following and she gets proposed to from David...by servant (im not crazy about this guy's proposing tactics..... but maybe he got better with more practice..?.... haha) and thats really the last we hear about her character. I want to know more! did she continue to be a blessing to her husband and king? how did she deal with all those other wives? did she love David? how did she feel about and deal with Bathsheba? ....i guess that will have to wait for heaven...
It is the same God who allowed Jonathan to die, that allowed Nabal to die and the same God who will allow me to die if He doesnt come and take me home first. Such is the sovereignty of God.