Wednesday, February 01, 2012
David and Jonathan Kiss Each Other Goodbye (1 Samuel, Chapter 20)
Again, this relationship between Jonathan and David seems a lot closer than the standard friendship. There's nothing with that, of course. And, it's vague enough and ancient enough in context to forgive their kissing and hugging and standing around naked with each other.
However, I've been hearing from apologists, who always make me roll my eyes, that there's no way that these two are gay. I'm still on the fence on this, but I can't dismiss it as easily as they can, ESPECIALLY after reading this chapter! Once again, I personally don't care if they're gay. The only thing that's wrong about them being gay is the context behind the book (The Bible) which I'm reading it, which seems to readily condemn gays.
King Saul, the father of Jonathan, seems to know what's going on between his son and David. Whether he suspects his son Jonathan of being gay, or perhaps just being more sympathetic to David instead of his own father's crown is not clear. But when Saul confronts Jonathan, he says this: "You son of a perverse, rebellious woman! I know you've chosen [David] to your own confusion, and unto the confusion of your mother's nakedness!"
You'd almost think Saul caught the two guys making out.
But no, for the record the Bible doesn't state explicitly the nature of their relationship. It says they love each other, it says they held hands, hugged, kissed, stood around naked, etc. But it never says they're gay.
Well, Jonathan gets the hint that his dad (King Saul) wants to kill David. So, he runs to David and tells him. They even do a gay little pre-planned ritual where David is waiting in a field, Jonathan shoots three arrows and sends a boy to fetch them. If the "the arrows are to the side" of the boy, David (who is looking on from a hiding spot), will see it as King Saul being cool with David. If, on the other hand, "the arrows are beyond" the boy, David will see that king intends to kill him.
Yes, I know. This isn't "gay" behavior. They're not doing anything explicitly homosexual. I mean it's "gay" because it's just over-the-top and a little dramatic.
When the time comes to shoot the arrows, the message is obviously that the arrows are beyond. Jonathan shoots an arrow beyond the boy. After seeing this, and after the unknowing participant (the boy) leaves, David comes out of hiding and embraces Jonathan.
This is essentially their final goodbye (I think), because David must flee. They hug, they cry, and they kiss each other farewell.