C. H. Spurgeon
Sermon Notes From Charles Spurgeon
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18. Love Plighting Troth.

Then Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul. I Samuel 18:3 And Jonathan caused David to swear again, because he loved him; for he loved him as he loved his own soul. I Samuel 20:17.

Why so many sermons on Jonah, and so few on Jonathan? Are the cross-grained more worthy of study than the gentle and generous? This noble prince counted it his joy to further the interests of the man who was to be preferred before him. There was something very beautiful in Jonathan, and this came out in his unselfish, magnanimous love of David. How much more beauty is there in the unparalleled love of Jesus to us poor sinners!


"Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him"

The covenant was made, not so much because of their mutual love, but because Jonathan loved David. "Thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women" (2 Sam. 1:26).

1. Jesus bound himself to us by covenant bonds. He undertook the charge of us as our Surety in the covenant of grace.

He entered into our nature to represent us, thus becoming the second Adam (1 Cor. 15:47).

He pledged himself to redeem us with the sacrifice of himself. "He loved me, and gave himself for me" (Gal. 2:20).

He took us into union with himself. "For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones" (Eph. 5:30).

He has bound up our future lives with his own. "Your life is hid with Christ in God" (Col. 3:3). "Because I live, ye shall live also" (John 14:19) "Father, I will that they also whom thou hast given me be with me where I am" (John 17:24) "Ye in me and I in you" Seven golden words.

He has made us share in all that he has, changing garments with us, as in this narrative (1 Sam. 18:4).

He could not come nearer to us, or he would.

In all these covenant deeds he proves his perfect love.

2. Jesus would have us bound to him on our part: therefore he would, have us,

Submit ourselves to the saving power of his love.

Love him for his great love; even as David loved Jonathan.

Own that we are his by choice, purchase, and power; and do this deliberately and solemnly, as men make a covenant.

Join ourselves to his people; for he reckons them to be himself.

Show kindness to all who are his, for his sake; even as David was good to Mephibosheth (2 Sam. 9).

More and more merge our interests in his, and find our gain in advancing his honor (2 Cor. 5:14-15). "Bound in the bundle of life with the Lord thy God" (1 Sam. 25:29). What an expression! Yet how true!

3. If this be our Lord's desire, shall we not fulfill it?

Let the bonds be mutual and indissoluble (Song of Sol. 2:16).

Let us accept the priceless gifts of the Prince, and then give ourselves to him without reserve.

Let us love him as we love ourselves, for he loved us better than himself (Matt. 27:42).

Let this be a time of love, a season for renewing our vows, a time of fuller self-merging into Jesus (Gal. 2:20).

II. GREAT LOVE DESIRES RENEWED PLEDGES FROM ITS OBJECT. "Jonathan caused David to swear again"

Not out of selfishness, but from a sacred jealousy. "The Lord thy God is a jealous God." See also Song of Solomon 8:6.

It is the only return love can receive. We can love Jesus, we can do no more. "O love the Lord, all ye his saints" (Ps. 31:23).

It is for our highest benefit. Bound to the horns of the altar we are free. Wedded to Christ we are blessed.

We are so chill already that we have need to renew the flame of affection with flesh coals of loving communion.

We are so tempted and assailed that the more solemnly and the more often we renew our vows, the better for us.

We are most unhappy if drawn aside: every backsliding is misery, Therefore, let us be bound firmly to our Lord.

Hence he invites us to new pledges (Song of Sol. 9:8).

Our first surrender was attended with a solemn dedication.

Our baptism was his own appointed token of our being one with him in his death, burial, and resurrection (Rom. 6:4).

Our communions should be hallowed renewals of our covenant:

"Let every act of worship be,
Like our espousals, Lord, to thee;
Like the dear hour when from above,
We first received thy pledge of love.

Our restorations from sickness ought to be remembered with special praise, and we should pay our vows in the presence of the Lord's people (Ps. 116:8, 14).

Our flesh conditions should be attended with extraordinary devotion. Removal, promotion, marriage, birth of children, death of relatives, etc., are notable seasons for rededication.

Our times of spiritual revival, when we are full of hearty fellowship with the Lord and his saints, should be new departures.

Come and let us renew our loves at this good hour.

Let us get alone, and express our pure desires before our well-beloved, when only he can hear.

Let us think of some special act of devotion by which to express our affection, and let us carry it out at once. Have we no alabaster box Can we not wash the Beloved's feet, and kiss them with reverent affection.

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