Christian Devotional – August 28, 2020

Always Second – #12

Saul is angry and Jonathan is devastated. Jonathan goes back and implements the plan that he and David had agreed upon. Read 1 Samuel 20:24-34.

So David hid in the field; and when the new moon came, the king sat down to eat food. The king sat on his seat as usual, the seat by the wall; then Jonathan rose up and Abner sat down by Saul’s side, but David’s place was empty. Nevertheless Saul did not speak anything that day, for he thought, “It is an accident, he is not clean, surely he is not clean.” It came about the next day, the second day of the new moon, that David’s place was empty; so Saul said to Jonathan his son, “Why has the son of Jesse not come to the meal, either yesterday or today?” Jonathan then answered Saul, “David earnestly asked leave of me to go to Bethlehem, for he said, ‘Please let me go, since our family has a sacrifice in the city, and my brother has commanded me to attend. And now, if I have found favor in your sight, please let me get away that I may see my brothers.’ For this reason he has not come to the king’s table.” Then Saul’s anger burned against Jonathan and he said to him, “You son of a perverse, rebellious woman! Do I not know that you are choosing the son of Jesse to your own shame and to the shame of your mother’s nakedness? For as long as the son of Jesse lives on the earth, neither you nor your kingdom will be established. Therefore now, send and bring him to me, for he must surely die.” But Jonathan answered Saul his father and said to him, “Why should he be put to death? What has he done?” Then Saul hurled his spear at him to strike him down; so Jonathan knew that his father had decided to put David to death. Then Jonathan arose from the table in fierce anger, and did not eat food on the second day of the new moon, for he was grieved over David because his father had dishonored him.
1 Samuel 20:24‭-‬34 NASB

Jonathan has to deal with the fact that his father wants to kill his best friend. He can’t deny it anymore. Saul his made his anger at David very well known. And, unfortunately, Saul is now angry at Jonathan because he believes Jonathan has sided with David.

Saul actually tries to appeal to Jonathan. He tries to remind Jonathan that because of David, Jonathan will never have the opportunity to be king. Jonathan already knows this and recognizes this. However, I’m sure it still stung to hear it in the moment. Even knowing something is best, it can still sting and make us feel bad. I am sure Jonathan was upset that he would not have the opportunity to be king. But, Jonathan recognized that God had not called him to be king. God had called his father Saul to be king for a time, and now God has called David to be king. Jonathan made the decision that he would rather side with God than with his own personal desires. And, he settled that decision long before his father makes this statement and hurls a spear at him.

When we make a decision to follow God no matter what, we can expect to be tested on that. We can expect that Satan will try to throw at us anything and everything that would have matched our personal desires, our selfish desires. However, because Jonathan had made his decision and had settled that in his own mind and his own heart, he was not swayed in the heat of the moment when Saul flings this accusation, and a spear, at Jonathan. Jonathan already knew where his loyalties lay. He was loyal to God, and God had chosen David.

Have we made our decisions about what we are loyal to? Are they more than just decisions, are they commitments that will hold us through even when faced with the toughest challenges? Never be willing to compromise your relationship with God for something temporary. If we believe that God knows best, we have to walk and trust that he really does know best. Jonathan recognized that he would always be second and at that was God’s will for him, and he accepted and was OK with that. Have we accepted God’s will for us? Are we continuing to seek it and recognizing when we need to continue to move to adjust to be in line with God’s will?

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