|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
1:17-27 Kasheth, or the bow, probably was the title of this mournful, funeral song. David does not commend Saul for what he was not; and says nothing of his piety or goodness. Jonathan was a dutiful son, Saul an affectionate father, therefore dear to each other. David had reason to say, that Jonathan's love to him was wonderful. Next to the love between Christ and his people, that affection which springs form it, produces the strongest friendship. The trouble of the Lord's people, and triumphs of his enemies, will always grieve true believers, whatever advantages they may obtain by them.
Verse 26. - Thy love to me was wonderful. Never was there a purer friendship than that of Jonathan for David. It began just after the combat with Goliath, when the young prince, instead of seeing in David a rival, who had equalled his own feat of valour, took him to his heart, put upon him his own robe and armour, and thus presented him to the army as his friend and brother. Nor did his father's hatred of David, nor the knowledge that David was to inherit the kingdom, interfere with his love. He remained a dutiful son to his father, and accepted his inferior position with magnanimity, without once seeing in David cause for blame; and it surpassed the love of women, because, to requite their devotion, they look for protection and homage, the more delightful because it is paid by the strong to the weak. But here the lives of the two friends could not combine in one happy fusion of mutual union. Their hearts were bound together, but a hard fate, of which they were fully aware, made the ruin of the one the certain result of the happiness of the other. Nevertheless, Jonathan, with everything to lose, and David with everything to gain, remained true and loyal friends.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan,.... So he was, not only by nation and religion, but by affinity, having married the sister of Jonathan; and still more so by affection and friendship, he being a friend of David's, that stuck closer to him than a brother, and who loved him as his own soul; he was distressed for him, not on account of his spiritual and eternal state, which he doubted not was happy, but for the manner of his death, his loss of him, and want of his pleasant conversation, of his counsel and advice, and assistance in his present circumstances:
very pleasant hast thou been unto me; in their friendly visits of, and conversation with, one another; many a pleasant hour had they spent together, but now must see each other's faces no more in this world:
thy love to me was wonderful; as indeed he might well say, being towards one of a mean extract in comparison of his, to one who was not his own brother, but a brother-in-law; and to one that was a rival to the crown he was heir to, and would take it before him: and who ran the risk of losing his father's affection, and even his life, for espousing his cause: see 1 Samuel 18:1,
passing the love of women; either that which they are loved with by men, or that with which they love their husbands and children; which is generally the strongest and most affectionate. The Targum is,"more than the love of two women,''than his two wives, Ahinoam and Abigail; so Kimchi; meaning that he was more strongly and affectionately loved by Jonathan than by them, who yet might love him very well too.
2 Samuel 1:26 Parallel Commentaries
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