Motivated by Love for Others (1 Samuel 20:17) - Radical

Motivated by Love for Others (1 Samuel 20:17)

“And Jonathan made David swear again by his love for him, for he loved him as he loved his own soul.”
– 1 Samuel 20:17

What a great picture of friendship in the Bible. What a great description of love between friends. He loved him as he loved his own soul. Don’t you want to be a friend like that to others? Don’t we all want to have friendships where we love like this, and we are loved like this? How meaningful it is to have someone else love us as they love their own soul. Oh, just that phrase. It makes me think about God’s grace and people who have loved and cared for me in my life. I have so many people to be thankful for and family, friends, brothers, and sisters in the church.

God, help us to care about others and share the gospel with them out of love for them.

1 Samuel 20:17 Reminds Us of the Importance of Relationships

Oh, my life is the fruit of people who loved and cared for me. And I want others’ lives to be the fruit of my love and care for them. Don’t we all want this? We want to receive this. We want to reflect this kind of love. So let’s pray. 1 Samuel 20:17. God, we pray that you would help us to be friends like this. Help us to love others as our own soul, just as you taught us, Jesus.

Second commandment after loving you with all our hearts, soul, mind, and strength is to love others as ourselves. God help us to love like this. Help us to love the people around us like this. And help us to be friends like this, brothers and sisters in Christ and the church like this. Help us to be family members like this, loving others as our own soul. God, help us to love the lost is we love our own soul. God, help us to care about their souls, share the gospel with them out of love for them.

This Verse Prays for Good Relationships with People who Love Us

God, we pray for this kind of love in our lives. We pray for good friendships with people who love us as their own souls. God, we pray for family relationships like this. We ask for that. We ask that you would make this kind of love a reality in our church families that we’re a part of. God, we ask for 1 Samuel 20:17 kind of friendships in our lives, starting with the way we love and in the way others love us. And God, we thank you for the gift of friendship. What a good gift from your hand.

And we pray that you would help us to maximize these gifts, to steward these gifts, to cultivate these gifts, good friendships for your glory. Even as we pray this in Jesus’ name and the name of the one who said, “I no longer call you servants, but I call you friends.” Jesus, we praise you for your love for us, for your love for me, for your love for each of us as your friend, even for the privilege of prayer right now, oh God, in an Exodus 33 kind of a way, Moses speaking to you face to face as a man speaks with his friend. God, thank you for calling us your friend. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.

David Platt

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder of Radical.

David received his Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is the author of Don’t Hold Back, Radical, Follow MeCounter CultureSomething Needs to ChangeBefore You Vote, as well as the multiple volumes of the Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary series.

Along with his wife and children, he lives in the Washington, D.C. metro area.


That means that the people with the most urgent spiritual and physical needs on the planet are receiving the least amount of support. Together we can change that!