Characteristics of a Good Friend

Characteristics of a Good Friend

1 Samuel 18:1-5

In this passage the word of God tells us how David and Jonathan became friends. Their friendship was one of the great friendships found in the word of God. Not only did they have a love for one another but this love was tested and yet proved by Jonathan’s action when Saul wanted to kill David. In our lesson we will look at some of the characteristics of Jonathan to see what we should look for in our friends.

Characteristics of a Good Friend:

1)  They had a kindred spirit (1 Samuel 14:1-14 ; 1 Samuel 17:1-58)

  • I think one of the things that drew Jonathan to David was seeing David’s courage and willingness to fight against Goliath who was defying the God of Israel.
  • Even though Jonathan did not go out and fight against Goliath he and his armor bearer had acted courageously on behalf of God and the armies of Israel.
  • Therefore there was a warrior spirit when it came to serving God in both of these men and it drew Jonathan to David.
  • When we are choosing our friends then they should have a kindred spirit, first of all they should be saved and they should be wanting to serve God if that is what you are doing (2 Corinthians 6:14-17)

2)  Jonathan loved David as his own soul (1 Samuel 18:3)

  • This is a great characteristic in friendship. We would all love to have a friend that would love us as his own soul.
  • Note that this is the attitude the Apostle Paul says that the Philippians should have one toward another (Philippians 2:2-3).

3)  Jonathan gave of himself (1 Samuel 18:4)

  • In this verse Jonathan gives David his robe, his garments, sword, bow, and girdle. This is significant because David has already been anointed by Saul to be King. Jonathan should be the king but Saul’s sins caused God to pick David instead.
  • A good friend is willing to give of himself and not always be a taker. If you have friends and all they do is take without giving they are not really good friends. Remember the words of Jesus (John 15:13).

4)  Jonathan Promoted David over himself (1 Samuel 20:30-34)

  • The event that leads to Jonathan and David having to separate is Saul wanting to kill David so bad that he tries to kill Jonathan as well. In this Saul tells Jonathan that he cannot be king as long as David is alive. But Jonathan does not let that fact affect his friendship with David. For they have made a covenant. What a true friend.

These are some of the characteristics that you should look for in a friend. You may be thinking that there is no one who meets this description but remember Jesus he desires to be your friend, and there is the greatest friend of all.

Characteristics of a Good Friend : Handout

1 Samuel 18:1-5

1)  Make an outline showing the characteristics of Jonathan that we should look for in our friends.