One of the greatest friendships mentioned in the Bible is that of David and Jonathan. But I simply can’t find the words to discuss it as I had Job’s friends. It would have helped had the author chosen fewer double-meaning words, but since I’m a literal sort I don’t want to have to untangle the tale and sort out those double-meanings. still, you can read the tale for yourself, somewhere along 1 Samuel 15 to 20 or so. Throughout his life David had many friends, but perhaps this one friendship should be left alone as what it is. (Isn’t it difficult when Scholars can’t even agree on the subject at hand?)
The next friendship then is Herod’s. Yep, even bad guys get to have friends. Pilate goes down a notch in my estimation for keeping this guy’s company.
Luke 23:12, “12That day Herod and Pilate became friends—before this they had been enemies.”
That day, as we all well know – or should know well – was the day that Jesus was brought before them. Sometimes a common foe makes a friend out of an enemy. I think this passage suggests that the two people themselves became friends and not the countries they represented. No double-meanings here.
There is another friendship that served Daniel well. He and a handful of others were taken from their homes and brought into the service of a foreign king who had just conquered said home. In keeping with the traditions of his faith and his people, Daniel literally set himself and his friends apart from the group.
Daniel 2:14-17, “14 When Arioch, the commander of the king’s guard, had gone out to put to death the wise men of Babylon, Daniel spoke to him with wisdom and tact. 15 He asked the king’s officer, “Why did the king issue such a harsh decree?” Arioch then explained the matter to Daniel. 16 At this, Daniel went in to the king and asked for time, so that he might interpret the dream for him.
17 Then Daniel returned to his house and explained the matter to his friends Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. 18 He urged them to plead for mercy from the God of heaven concerning this mystery, so that he and his friends might not be executed with the rest of the wise men of Babylon.”
Daniel is the guy the book is named after, but the supporting role his friends played helped him get through the tough years. Thirty verses later at the ending of this tale, they are rewarded with an administratorship. The next chapter is entirely theirs. It would have been easy for them, any one or all to have denounced God and bowed down to the king’s golden image, but they didn’t. They stuck together, were cast into the furnace together, and came out of it unharmed together. For that, they got a promotion. Their friendship was a vital one that isn’t elaborated upon, but it’s easy to see that they looked out for each other. I would think though, having friends from home would be like being at a peaceful island when you know your nation is a warring one. No matter the chaotic state of the empire or whatever happened to Daniel, he always knew where to find his friends when he needed them.