David and Jonathan: Biblical Homosexual Relationship?

Prophet David was the second king of the united Kingdom of Israel (c. 1011 BCE – 971 BCE). He is depicted as the most righteous of all the ancient kings of Israel – although not without fault – as well as an acclaimed warrior, musician and poet (he is traditionally credited with the authorship of many of the Psalms).

Jonathan was a prince of the Kingdom of Israel, son of King Saul. Contrary to popular belief, most biblical chronologists believe him to be far older than David, approximately fifty years to David’s twenty.

Reading the Old Testament books of Samuel, and comparing the relationship between David and Joanathan to what we hear currently of gay relationship one has to wonder whether Prophet David was really a homosexual, and how God whom according to the Jewish Scholars and Catholic Churhc opposed homosexuality while still granting such grace to David and having him a prophet and a king for Israel.

The versus in the bible don’t describe an explicit sexual same-sex relationship but it does describe a great love and passion that we don’t see in a normal brotherly relationship. In one of them David states that his love for Jonathan surpasses anything he has with women.

Here I copy some of the versus:
“And it came to pass, when he [David] had made an end of speaking unto Saul, that the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.” (1 Sam. 18:1).

That same day, “Jonathan and David made a covenant, because he loved him as his own soul” (1 Sam. 18:3).

Can this covenant represent a first kind of gay marriage?

Jonathan removes and offers David the rich garments he is wearing, and shares with him his worldly possessions: “And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was upon him, and gave it to David, and his garments, even to his sword, and to his bow, and to his girdle.” (1 Sam. 18:4).

When Jonathan is slain on Mt. Gilboa by the Philistines (1 Sam. 31:2), David laments his death saying, “I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan: very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, surpassing the love of women.” (2 Sam. 1:26).

Read the entire enterpretation of the story on Wikipedia:


  1. after reading your article, i read other articles on wikipedia as well. as i always doubt but never sure (bcz of the written words and not the fact) that some of relationships between saints, prophetes and others can be judged as gay love stories. David and Jonathan were more into a platonic relationship, which is more than a friendship, and more than a brothers love, but never get the real gay sexual part(except the kissing and hugging part which is a common social custom that we all use to show our love and care to others). despite that David was married many times, and one of his wives was Jonathan’s sister, i know that it never had to stand as a fact infront of having a gay emotions in the same time of being married. and the question is that David was a straight living with a bisexual preferences?! in fact i can’t judge the covenant between them as a 1rst gay marriage;))) though i say platonic love, cuz their relation was wonderful, passionated n surpassing the love of woman..


  2. Observer, we Christians have enough problem with our image then you use this for the HEADER of your post!Don’t give them anymore fuel for the fire!

    David blew it many times, but God said he was a man after God’s own heart. The canon of scripture is clear that homosexuality is NOT pleasing to God, it is almost a symbol of the worst kind of offense because the covenant of marriage, and the oneness it brings, is akin to God’s covenant with His people.

    There is NO way God would mention this level of relationship as one to lift up as an example of male loyalty and commitment if there was a hint of sexuality attached.

    They both knew the weight of the future of Israel rested on David’s shoulders,and their was something much higher than sexuality at stake as a basis for their friendship.

    a-mok – why do people always have to read sexuality into otherwise platonic, pure relationships? Don’t believe it.


  3. Observer, sorry if I sounded cranky. I was, tired and hungry. I know you didn’t write the Wiki article, so I’m not blaming you for it.


  4. y3ni for me i wonder you observer how you could write something like this!! and the second thing that we Christian will not attack you for this article at all coz we know you did not write it on your own!! we believe that god will defend himself and defend his people king or prophet.. so ne7na msh wa2finlkom 3la elda2ra coz we love you and this love help us to forgive 😀
    i cant see any problem in such a relation… David and Jonathan were so closed from each other and in my point of view there is no problem in this i already know a lot of guys like this in our Christian society and the muslem society i cant find any problem in this. coz you know a girl and a boy cant be close like this!! every person in this world need a mate beside him or beside her think like them and act like them…


  5. Dave, I don’t think so. While explicit sexual act isn’t written in the bible, it doesn’t take a strong effort to derive more than friendship in those 2 relationship. For god sake, David said that his love for Jonathan surpassed anything he had with women. Why did he say women? Why didn’t he say for anyone unless it implies thee is something common between his love for Jonathan and for women?

    a-mok, I guess that the term of homosexuality wasn’t clear in David’s time. Men havng sex with me was prohobited at that time. Maybe that is why sexual relationship wasn’t mentioned in the Bible. I am not sure where David’s sexuality lies between homosexuality and hetreosexuality, but it is clear from the bible story that he loved a man more than any other woman. He said it himself.

    Kinzi, I do value your opinion :). Don’t worry about sounding cranky, you have the right to speak up.

    I just want to make it clear that I had no intention, what so ever to attack Christianity in this article. I don’t wan to give Christians more image problems.

    I just don’t think that Christians, having a homosexual Prophet, would in any way harm their image. In the contrary, it would help percieving the Christian God in a better loving light than what some Churches try to show.

    The Jews scriptures prohibits many things that Christians don’t percieve as wrongs now.

    I don’t think that Jonathan was aware of the importance of David to Israel at the first time his sight fall on David. The scripture says that he loved him instantly. More even than his own soul. A selfless love where Jonathan didn’t even care about loosing his chance of becoming the next king of Israel.

    Bear in mind that Jonathan was nearly 30 years older than David. That makes their relationship more of a father and son rather than brothers.

    Hey Wedad, as I said for Kinzi, I didn’t intend to offend Christians. I am just highighting a story that seems to have more to it than many Christians believe. As I said proving their sexual relationp doesn’t make Christiaity worse from my point of view.

    “so ne7na msh wa2finlkom 3la elda2ra coz we love you and this love help us to forgive”

    Meen e7na? I am Christian, not much of a beleiver but I am 🙂


  6. Everyone is missing the point, as the Kabbalist Masters understood. The point of redemption is the healing that must occur between brothers, not man and woman:wife and husband. Jonathan’s soul was knitted to David’s soul and Jonathan loved David’s soul as his own. Jonathan was of the Tribe of Benjamin; David of Judah. The scepter of kingship belongs to Judah, not Benjamin. But David and Jonathan had to become brothers in order that David inherit Jerusalem which is in the land of Benjamin. And, David’s soul had to become knitted to Jonathan’s soul in order for his soul to be knitted to Rachel, the mother of Joseph and Benjamin, and of all Israel. This story is about the future messiahs; the two half-messiahs . . . son of Joseph and son of David, and the healing that they will bring between all brothers. That’s all. This is the true meaning of this story: the healing between antagonistic brothers.


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