A friend like Jonathan.
He is taller than average, with mysteriously dramatic brown eyes like a soft, deep, rich Belgian chocolate. Sturdy without being large and brawny, with shaggy long black hair bind at the back of his neck which gracefully falls on his back. His olive skin is unblemish and he had the most captivating smile with quality of thoughtfulness which you can write numerous sonnets with never-ending metaphors. His features are somewhat capricious, at least according to the beauty canons of ancient Greece, nevertheless the features are strong and definite and his face holds a curious beauty that cannot be identified by one feature, but by the sum of its parts. His father had been a very handsome man during his prime and though, not overwhelmingly daunting as his father, in general, his face is beautiful and expressive.
He is twenty-something or maybe thirty, shrinks away from the limelight, is generally quiet unless among close friends to whom he is extremely loyal. A gentleman beyond words towards women, naturally shy, somewhat reserved in unfamiliar settings and decidedly not the guy to advocate physical confrontation but which does not infer weakness or cowardice. In fact he had been a soldier and a very good one too. He is resolute, courageous, loved and admired by many. He also inherit his father’s impetuousness along with his independence. He is humble despite being born into a family of great means. He loves music, enjoys the simple things in life and I wonder if he would have been a soldier, if he was given the choice. His voice is deep and masculine. He is the first-born, heir to the great estate his father had built. His name in Hebrew means “God has given”.
It’s true he sounds like the archetypal protagonist of the romance genre, the kind exclusively found only in books and minds of the hopeless romantic few, but he is real. He is ambitious but not over-competitive like his father and he is willing to lay down his life for his friends or his country for the right cause. He is unshakable, righteous and just and he worships pure, unadulterated truth above all else. You might find him a little aloof when you first meet him but once you know him, you have a friend for life. What makes him greater is that his character exceeds his physical attributes. He will put his own life in jeopardy, risking it just to protect those whom he love even if it means disobeying. He did not live as long as his father and his humble, unselfish life is often eclipsed by the greatness and the cretinism of his father and that of his counterparts.
While many of us fight even our own brothers and sisters over petty inheritance, here is a story of Jonathan, the Prince of Israel, son of King Saul, the rightful heir to the throne . What untold riches, unfathom abundance awaits the son of Saul. What glorious victory and immortal legacy awaits the son of Ahinoam. But there was love, the greatest among virtues. And it was this selfless love, the same love which puts to shame the “tongues of men and angels” that enable him to relinquish all the future glory to risk his life, travel great distance to aid his beloved friend David, and that too his father’s immense enemy all the while knowing that David would take his place as an heir of Israel. Understanding that he must decrease while David increase. What a great extraordinary man! A man among men. How perplexing it must have been for him to constantly hear his father plotting his best friend’s death. And how easy it must have been to abide by his father’s plan of carnal nature. It would have been too easy to succumb to the temptation and say “It’s not fair God! Why should I be punished for my father’s sin? I am the rightful heir, I have always honor and obey you unlike my father and why should I be deprived of my royal birthright?” But not only did he dutifully accepted God’s decision, he established a lasting friendship with the man whom his own human nature would have consider him rival. His was a life of great afflictions but wait, God has a very special plan for Jonathan not what he expected, to be sure and not an easy one – but one that will give him an immense joy and a very special role in God’s overarching plan. What a wonderful tribute to true friendship, when so many would have rejoiced at the death of rivals.
Jonathan never become king like his father but he outshines Saul in every way simply through obedience and faithfulness. When David became King of Israel he was equally faithful. He searched out Jonathan’s son Mephibosheth who was disable and provided him for the rest of his life. Whether you believe in the Bible or not, Jonathan is a great man. An unsung hero of faith and of the Bible. Jonathan you are remember for all your unbounded magnanimity. From a distant land, from the words of a tired poet, in this small and insolvent room, my humble ink will never weary writing your worthy praise. You are not forgotten. And you will never be.
An ardent fan,