– Jeremy Taylor
David and Jonathan
Jonathan was King Saul’s son, but Saul wanted David dead. Jonathan took some risks to make sure David wouldn’t be killed and helped David. As out of control as Saul was near the end of his life, he would’ve taken his own son’s life (Jonathan) because that’s what hate will do. It makes you become highly irrational. After Jonathan spoke with David about his father wanting to kill David, it says, “As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul” (1 Samuel 18:1). Jonathan “made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul” (1 Samuel 18:3). They both proved their friendship was on fire for one another.
You and Your Friend
When I refer to your friends’ love for you, what about your love for them? Knowing that God is sovereign over all things, He brought your friend into your life for His purposes and your good. The same goes for you in regard to their life. It’s so true that “a friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity” (Proverbs 17:17). The timing of people becoming our friends is no accident or random chance of events. Do you have “a friend who sticks closer than a brother” (Proverbs 18:24) or sister? If not, to find a friend, be a friend.
Jesus and Us
Just prior to Jesus going to the cross to die for our sins and return to the Father, He called His disciples “friend” for the very first time (John 15:15). That was a change in the relationship; it was now a more intimate one. Jesus called them friends! He is a friend of sinners, and aren’t we glad for that! Fire is symbolic of God and His judgment. Jesus endured the wrath of God that should have been ours. He took it upon Himself for our sake, and now God will see us as having Jesus’ own righteousness if we’ve trusted in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21). That’s a godly love and the highest there is (agape).
Since Jeremy Taylor said, “Love is friendship set on fire,” can you think of any other examples of friends or someone you know where love was a true fire of friendship? By the way, friendships take effort. They don’t just happen. It’s not about what you can get out of a relationship but what you can put into one. When both friends have that perspective, it can become one of the closest relationships between two people on the face of the earth. Some people end up marrying their best friend. I did!