ODB: Deep Friendship in Christ

February 2, 2024

READ: 2 Samuel 1:23–27 

Go in peace, for we have sworn friendship with each other in the name of the Lord. 1 Samuel 20:42

There’s a monument in the chapel of Christ’s College, Cambridge, England, dedicated to two seventeenth-century physicians, John Finch and Thomas Baines. Known as the “inseparable friends,” Finch and Baines collaborated on medical research and traveled together on diplomatic trips. When Baines died in 1680, Finch lamented their “unbroken marriage of souls” that had lasted thirty-six years. Theirs had been a friendship of affection, loyalty, and commitment.

King David and Jonathan had a friendship equally as close. They shared deep mutual affection (1 Samuel 20:41), and even made vows of commitment to each other (vv. 8–17, 42). Their friendship was marked by radical loyalty (19:1–2; 20:13), Jonathan even sacrificing his right to the throne so David could become king (20:30–31; see 23:15–18). When Jonathan died, David lamented that Jonathan’s love to him had been “more wonderful than that of women” (2 Samuel 1:26).

We may feel uncomfortable today likening friendship to marriage, but maybe friendships like Finch and Baines’ and David and Jonathan’s can help our own friendships reach greater depth. Jesus welcomed His friends to lean against Him (John 13:23–25), and the affection, loyalty, and commitment He shows us can be the basis of the deep friendships we build together.

— Sheridan Voysey

How do you think faith in Christ can deepen friendship? How could you show more affection, loyalty, or commitment to your friends?

Dear God, please help me to build deeper, more intimate friendships.

For further study, read A Torrent of Justice: Building Relationships of

Source: Our Daily Bread