While Jonathan protects David, Saul makes two failed attempts to kill David with a spear and then expels him from the royal court, demoting him to a lower military rank.
But David’s continued military success fans Saul’s envy and fear to a raging flame.
Saul finally snaps and issues orders to his son and his men to kill David.
Although Jonathan can temporarily alleviate his father’s rage and persuade him to restore David to royal service, Saul’s paranoia eventually compels him into an all-out hunt for Israel’s hero and deliverer.
Indeed, Saul’s hatred for David extends even to those who assist David in any way, manifested when he slaughters the priests at Nob for harboring David.
Besides illustrating the friendship between David and Jonathan-and Jonathan’s virtue-the account of David’s flight from Saul, which makes up most of the remainder of 1 Samuel, develops two significant themes.
Most importantly, we witness David’s tremendous patience and trust in God’s plans for him.
Instead of asserting any sort of privileged claim for the throne, David waits for God to fulfill his promise, though this waiting almost costs David his life and forces him into refugee status.
Even when David is twice given the opportunity to kill Saul and end both his exile and his wait for the throne, he refuses to do so out of respect for the Lord and his anointed one.
We cannot miss the cutting irony here, as Saul has no scruples about such matters.
No less important is the depiction of David as a man who lives not by bread alone but by every word that comes out of the mouth of the Lord (Dt 8:3).
Samuel has already told Saul that God would place on the throne of Israel “a man after his own heart” (1 Sam 13:14).
In his confrontation with Goliath, and throughout his flight from Saul, David proves himself to be that man.
We have the friendship of David and Jonathan
We live in the 21st century and often times, when people bring up the friendship between David and Jonathan, Scripture does not back away from the fact that they truly loved each other very very much
In our 21st century world that is so limited, we hear about this story and think it’s WEIRD
This is not DISORDERED love
This is not EROTIC love
This is a DEEPER, MORE PERVASIVE LOVE
This is FILIAL LOVE
In The Four Loves by C.S. Lewis, he enumerated the 4 loves that the Greeks talk about
STORGE is the love of AFFECTION i.e I LOVE STARWARS or I LOVE MASALA FRIED SARDINES!!!
C.S. Lewis describes STORGE as the bed of rice that you put your pad thai on (???) (I rather think of it as the garlic naan that goes with my butter chicken but hey, I’m weird like that 😉)
Everyone experiences STORGE, the love of AFFECTION
You don’t have to have fallen in love to experience STORGE (you just have to watch The Empire Strikes Back to experience it 🤓)
EROS is the love of ROMANCE
In our day and age, we HIGHLIGHT and ELEVATE EROS to such a degree
The Greek philosophers recognized that while EROS is GOOD, it is the LOVE OF DESIRE
It is a love that MOVES US
It is a love the moves us to either GIVE OF OURSELVES or TAKE
It can be distorted
EROS can move a husband and wife to GIVE THEMSELVES TO EACH OTHER
EROS can also move a husband and wife to TAKE FOR THEMSELVES
EROS, while a wonderful gift, can always be MISUSED
EROS is not the HIGHEST LOVE
EROS is fickle
EROS can DISAPPEAR just as fast as it came on
If you’ve ever read Shakespeare’s love stories like Romeo & Juliet, they are not about the ENDURING POWER of EROS, but they are about the FICKLE NATURE of EROS
If you’ve ever read Romeo & Juliet (or were forced to in high school English class 🤪)
At the beginning of the play, Romeo is head over heels in love...not with Juliet...but with ROSALINE
But then he meets Juliet and now SHE is the object of Romeo’s EROS
Shakespeare was pointing out that EROS can be good and is powerful
BUT IT CAN ALSO BE SILLY
When it comes down to it, EROS is CHEAP
Person A can be in love with Person B in one moment and then in love with Person C in the next moment
Jack and Jill end up getting married
What do they almost always end up saying?
“I MARRIED MY BEST FRIEND”
That’s great (and very hallmark movie style 🤪)
Eros is great, Jack and Jill have it too
But they have something EVEN BETTER
Jack and Jill have this depth of FRIENDSHIP (Until Jill messed up at the well and Jack fell down the hill and then all heck broke loose...ok maybe it was Jack’s fault 🤪)
“I am marrying my best friend today” is something most people would love to be able to say
They recognize the depth of love
STORGE- love of AFFECTION which is great
EROS - love of DESIRE which is great
FILIA - love of FRIENDSHIP is an EVEN HIGHER KIND OF LOVE
Virtuous Friendship is pursuing something EVEN BIGGER than the individual or the couple or the group of people
FILIA is that pursuit of virtue and it ENDURES (even if that friend is a Cowboys fan 🤪)
While we have STORGE for any number of things in our lives (except eggplant 🤮)
While we have EROS for any number of people in our lives
C.S. Lewis points out that when it comes to FILIA, true friendship, that happens maybe ONCE OR TWICE in a person’s life IF EVER
IT IS SO RARE
IT IS SO POWERFUL
IT IS SO PRECIOUS
1 Samuel 20 is a description of the FILIA between Jonathan and David
This brotherhood they have united in their pursuit of glory of God
United in their pursuit of honoring the nation of Israel
United in their pursuit of doing great things in the name of the Lord
United in their pursuit of DOING THE RIGHT THING
They recognize that virtue in each other and therefore love each other and help each other
When they say goodbye at the end of the chapter, we recognize that this love that maybe few of us can understand
We haven’t all experienced FILIA like this
We haven’t all experienced FRIENDSHIP like this
We haven’t all experienced this kind of LOVE
If you HAVE had that love of friendship, then you know the POWER of FILIA
It is different from STORGE
It is different from EROS
It is closer to the FOURTH LOVE
AGAPE, which is CHARITY aka ONE OF THE THEOLOGICAL VIRTUES (POP QUIZ!! What are the THREE theological virtues? Answer in the Comment Section of the Facebook Group Post 😁)
AGAPE was an idea for the Greeks and became a reality for the Christians when we saw HOW MUCH GOD LOVED US
John 3:16 (POP QUIZ!!! What does John 3:16 say? Answer in the Comment Section of the Facebook Group Post 😁)
Pope Benedict XVI noted that God actually loves us and has EROS for us as well
NOT SEXUAL LOVE
But a love of DESIRE
EROS doesn’t necessarily mean sexual
It can simply be the kind of love that MOVES a person out of themselves to GIVE of themselves
The problem is, WE DISTORT IT IN TODAY’S DAY AND AGE
Here is God who so loved the world that He GAVE OF HIMSELF
Here is Jesus on the Cross who is GIVING OF HIMSELF
Here is Jesus in the Eucharist who is GIVING OF HIMSELF
There is an incredible connection between STORGE, EROS, and FILIA in the love of AGAPE
It all comes to PERFECTION in the person of Jesus Christ, who loves us to the point of death
Jesus calls us his FRIENDS
Jesus gives us his SPIRIT
PRAY FOR FR. MIKE
PRAY FOR EACH OTHER
PRAY AND LIFT UP ALL OF THOSE PEOPLE WHO HAVEN’T KNOWN LOVE, ALL THOSE PEOPLE WHO WALK THROUGH LIFE ALONE
YOU ARE ONE OF US
YOU BELONG TO US
YOU BELONG TO THIS COMMUNITY
WE BELONG TO YOU TOO (WE BELONG TO THE NIGHT WE BELONG TO THE THUNDEEEEERRR!!! 😉)