1 Samuel 20:16 says, “So Jonathan made a covenant with the house of David”. Wait, “the house of David”? At this point, we are not told of any descendants, and David is not king. Does Jonathan know about the anointing? Making a covenant with David’s house is essential renouncing his claim to the throne. Is this just posturing by a pro-David narrator? Is he simply trying to justify the rise of the Davidic dynasty to the throne of Israel?
David hid in the field? Field? When I think of fields, I don’t think of them as an ideal hiding spot.
Saul’s response to Jonathan is almost comical. “You son of a perverse and rebellious woman! Don’t I know that you have sided with the son of Jesse to your own shame and to the shame of the mother who bore you?” To the shame of Jonathan’s mother? What about your shame Saul? Clearly the narrator is depicting Saul as tragic character, doomed to fail, blind to his impending doom, and obstinately sticking to his guns to the point of hysteria and perhaps even psychosis.
Even more revealing is the next line, “As long as the son of Jesse lives on this earth, neither you nor your kingdom will be established.” His kingdom has already been prophetically proclaimed to be not ever coming. Saul has been informed his line is done with him. There will be no dynasty of Saul. Whether or not David lives is irrelevant. That’s how blind Saul has become.
This elaborate plan with the arrows is kind of odd. But we see lots of this in Hebrew narratives. Not sure what to make of it. We often get few details which we would like to have, but we get all this laid out for us.
Not sure what to make of verse 41 either. I know it’s Ancient Near Eastern culture for men to greet with kisses, but David cried more? Why does this matter? Is the narrator just saying David’s ability to love Saul’s house is greater than the members of Saul’s house to love David?