Useful Bible Studies > 1 Samuel Commentary > chapter 14

Evidence that God was guiding Jonathan

1 Samuel 14:8-12

A young man had agreed to support Jonathan in the battle. However, it was much more important that they should have Godís support. The two men knew that they could not win the battle by their own efforts. Only God could save (rescue) his people from their enemies.

Jonathan believed that he was acting in faith (active belief and trust in God). However, he was very careful. Sometimes people wrongly imagine that they have faith; really, they are acting because of their own thoughts, plans and desires. Genuine faith comes from God. So Jonathan wanted God to show that he (God) really was guiding Jonathan.

For that reason, Jonathan decided to behave in a completely different manner from how soldiers normally behave. He would not try to enter his enemiesí camp secretly, or by night. Instead, he would only enter their camp if they invited him to do that. That would be clear evidence that God was on his side.

So Jonathan went to a place where his enemies could see him clearly. Normally, soldiers would not allow anyone from the other side to enter their camp. They could see both Jonathan and his companion, and their military equipment. However, on this occasion, Jonathanís enemies told Jonathan to climb into the camp so that they could fight. Probably they were just laughing at Jonathan. However, their invitation into the camp was the evidence that Jonathan had asked God to provide.

That camp had excellent defences. To get there, Jonathan and his companion had to climb up a very steep cliff (14:13). Their enemies could easily stop them if they threw stones at them. However, they did not do that. They allowed Jonathan and his companion to enter their camp.

Next part: Jonathan fights the Philistines (1 Samuel 14:13-14)


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© 2014, Keith Simons.