Covenant of Friendship and Peace: Gospel Study Adventure Day 3

screenshot_1425Good morning on this wet and rainy day!

This morning I actually got up before turning to the iPad and my third day of Gospel Study Adventure.

Today’s method is Summaries.

Summaries is an umbrella word I am using to encompass

1) Chapter/section headings found in scripture (which I usually ignore)
2) the purpose statement found at the beginning of Gospel Doctrine lessons (which I usually read to see where the teacher is supposed to guide us)
3) and the quotes at the top of General Conference talks (which usually summarizes the material).

The summaries I’m looking at today are for Lesson 23 in the Old Testament Gospel Doctrine manual–about the friendship of David and Jonathan and the consuming jealousy of King Saul. (I’ll also be studying this lesson the rest of the week).

Here are the 5 summaries with my commentary…

Lesson Purpose Statement

To encourage class members to be true to their friends, as Jonathan and David were, and avoid being consumed by jealousy and hatred, as Saul was.

This is where the lesson manual suggests the lesson should go.

Friendship, Honour, Marriage:1 Samuel 18

Jonathan loves David—Saul sets David over his armies—David is honored by the people, and Saul becomes jealous—David marries Michal, a daughter of Saul.

I see David and Jonathan’s friendship and Saul’s jealousy start to grow.  I see David gain another friend also–his wife Michal.

Life-Threatening Danger, Escape, Good company: 1 Samuel 19

Saul seeks to kill David—Michal saves David by artifice—David joins Samuel and the company of prophets.

Uh-oh…I see the result of consuming jealousy–Saul tries to kill David! And there is his friend/wife Michal reaching out at risk to herself to save him.

David joins Samuel and the prophets…so he’s leaving the opulent but tension and evil-spirit filled court for the humble ‘company of the prophets’ rich in spiritual strength and revelation.

Covenant of Friendship and Peace: 1 Samuel 20

David and Jonathan make a covenant of friendship and peace—They take leave of each other.

What a lovely phrase “covenant of friendship and peace”…made between the Warrior-Prince, Jonathan, and the Shepherd-turned-Outlaw (and soon to be) future King, David.

It reminds me that the Lord also offers us a “covenant of friendship and peace”…as Joseph Townsend says in his hymn Jesus has “loved us as our friend”.

Battles, Running, Hiding, Comfort: 1 Samuel 23

David smites the Philistines and saves Keilah—He continues to flee from Saul—Jonathan comforts him in Ziph.

Right…here are some weird words…what is ‘Keilah’ and where is ‘Ziph’?

Wikipedia says ‘Keilah’ was a city that David and his men rescued from the Philistines. The people of Keilah were going to give him up to Saul so he fled to a wood near the mountain city of Ziph.

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Judaean Mountains (from Wikipedia)

I don’t know about you but I expected Ziph to be an ugly brown desert.

So the wood near Ziph was his own Sherwood Forest?  There Jonathan came and gave him comfort and encouragement.

Choose Mercy and Generosity: 1 Samuel 24

David finds Saul in a cave and spares his life—Saul confesses that David is more righteous than he—David swears that he will not cut off the seed of Saul.

David faces jealous, murderous Saul and instead of retaliating treats him with mercy and generosity–partly because Saul was the “Lord’s anointed” but also because of his covenant of friendship and peace with Jonathan and having been strengthened by Jonathan’s words to him in the previous chapter?

What I am Taking into my Day

From my gospel study this morning I take away the reaffirmation that the Lord offers us a “covenant of friendship and peace”, that, despite adversity such as David endured, the Lord raises up friends like Jonathan and Michal to rescue and give comfort, and what sometimes seems like a odd, ignorable word (such as Ziph) is actually an invitation to look at his beautiful handiwork.

What about You?

What summaries did you read today?  How are they influencing your day today?  Leave a comment below!

Check in tonight for my report and visual quote.