Sermon Notes

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The Story of David

“Five Qualities of Inner Circle Friends”

Pastor Ricky Powell

June 16, 2019

1 Samuel 18:1-4 (NLT)

1After David had finished talking with Saul, he met Jonathan, the king’s son. There was an immediate bond between them, for Jonathan loved David.

2From that day on Saul kept David with him and wouldn’t let him return home.

3And Jonathan made a solemn pact with David, because he loved him as he loved himself.

4Jonathan sealed the pact by taking off his robe and giving it to David, together with his tunic, sword, bow, and belt.  

1. Inner circle friends are mutual friends.

1 Samuel 18:5–9 (NLT)

5Whatever Saul asked David to do, David did it successfully. So Saul made him a commander over the men of war, an appointment that was welcomed by the people and Saul’s officers alike.

6When the victorious Israelite army was returning home after David had killed the Philistine, women from all the towns of Israel came out to meet King Saul. They sang and danced for joy with tambourines and cymbals.

7This was their song: “Saul has killed his thousands, and David his ten thousands!”

8This made Saul very angry. “What’s this?” he said. “They credit David with ten thousands and me with only thousands. Next they’ll be making him their king!”

9So from that time on Saul kept a jealous eye on David.

1 Samuel 19:1–6 (NLT)

1Saul now urged his servants and his son Jonathan to assassinate David. But Jonathan, because of his strong affection for David,

2told him what his father was planning. “Tomorrow morning,” he warned him, “you must find a hiding place out in the fields.

3I’ll ask my father to go out there with me, and I’ll talk to him about you. Then I’ll tell you everything I can find out.”

4The next morning Jonathan spoke with his father about David, saying many good things about him. “The king must not sin against his servant David,” Jonathan said. “He’s never done anything to harm you. He has always helped you in any way he could.

5Have you forgotten about the time he risked his life to kill the Philistine giant and how the Lord brought a great victory to all Israel as a result? You were certainly happy about it then. Why should you murder an innocent man like David? There is no reason for it at all!”

6So Saul listened to Jonathan and vowed, “As surely as the Lord lives, David will not be killed.” 

2. Inner circle friends stand up for you when others stand against you.

1 Samuel 20:1–4 (NLT)

1David now fled from Naioth in Ramah and found Jonathan. “What have I done?” he exclaimed. “What is my crime? How have I offended your father that he is so determined to kill me?”

2“That’s not true!” Jonathan protested. “You’re not going to die. He always tells me everything he’s going to do, even the little things. I know my father wouldn’t hide something like this from me. It just isn’t so!”

3Then David took an oath before Jonathan and said, “Your father knows perfectly well about our friendship, so he has said to himself, ‘I won’t tell Jonathan—why should I hurt him?’ But I swear to you that I am only a step away from death! I swear it by the Lord and by your own soul!”

4“Tell me what I can do to help you,” Jonathan exclaimed. 

3. Inner circle friends speak the truth in love.


1 Samuel 20:14–17 (NLT)

14And may you treat me with the faithful love of the Lord as long as I live. But if I die,

15treat my family with this faithful love, even when the Lord destroys all your enemies from the face of the earth.”

16So Jonathan made a solemn pact with David, saying, “May the Lord destroy all your enemies!”

17And Jonathan made David reaffirm his vow of friendship again, for Jonathan loved David as he loved himself.


1 Samuel 20:30–34 (NLT)

30Saul boiled with rage at Jonathan. “You stupid son of a whore!” he swore at him. “Do you think I don’t know that you want him to be king in your place, shaming yourself and your mother?

31As long as that son of Jesse is alive, you’ll never be king. Now go and get him so I can kill him!”

32“But why should he be put to death?” Jonathan asked his father. “What has he done?”

33Then Saul hurled his spear at Jonathan, intending to kill him. So at last Jonathan realized that his father was really determined to kill David.

34Jonathan left the table in fierce anger and refused to eat on that second day of the festival, for he was crushed by his father’s shameful behavior toward David.


1 Samuel 20:41 (NLT)

41As soon as the boy was gone, David came out from where he had been hiding near the stone pile. Then David bowed three times to Jonathan with his face to the ground. Both of them were in tears as they embraced each other and said good-bye, especially David.

4. Inner circle friends don’t count the cost.

1 Samuel 23:14–18 (NLT)

14David now stayed in the strongholds of the wilderness and in the hill country of Ziph. Saul hunted him day after day, but God didn’t let Saul find him.

15One day near Horesh, David received the news that Saul was on the way to Ziph to search for him and kill him.

16Jonathan went to find David and encouraged him to stay strong in his faith in God.

17“Don’t be afraid,” Jonathan reassured him. “My father will never find you! You are going to be the king of Israel, and I will be next to you, as my father, Saul, is well aware.”

18So the two of them renewed their solemn pact before the Lord. Then Jonathan returned home, while David stayed at Horesh. 

5. Inner circle friends strengthen your faith in God.

Bottom Line: You need a friend, and you need to be a friend.