We live in a world where selfishness seems to be the rule of the day and personal gain the objective of most relationships and endeavors. One of the most honorable Christlike character traits a believer can develop is in being a loyal person. Jesus is called Faithful and True Revelation 19:11. Loyalty is to be stedfast and unwavering in one’s allegiance, affection, defense and support for a cause. A loyal person is often described by the phrase “true blue.” “True blue” is derived from the blue cloth that was made at Coventry, England in the late middle ages. The town’s dyers had a reputation for producing material that didn’t fade with washing, that is, it remained “fast” or “true.”
Loyalty comes into play for Christians in two ways:
1). Being loyal to the truth of God’s Word and
2). Being loyal in relationships.
Loyalty toward God, and His truth, is our highest loyalty and it puts limits on other loyalties. Early Believers were faced with choices between loyalties when facing the government of their day versus their relationship to God. Jesus said, “Render to Caesar the things which are Caesars and to God the things that are God’s Matthew 22:17.” Jesus wasn’t teaching His disciples to be disloyal to Caesar but was acknowledging a limit to the scope of loyalty due Caesar when it conflicted with the loyalty due to God. There is an authority beyond the political sphere (Caesar) which is loyalty to God and it is to take precedence and be given preeminence.
The Old Testament relationship between David and Jonathan displays many examples of being loyal and “true blue” in a relationship. Jonathan was in line to be the next King since he was Saul’s son yet he knew God had chosen David to take his place on the throne. In spite of the fact that Jonathan had every reason to resent David, he remained loyal to David, even choosing sides against his own father to support, protect, and defend David. It is obvious that loyalty to truth and to God was a higher loyalty that showed itself in Jonathan’s loyalty to David. A problem today is that some people these days require others to be loyal to them while they only reciprocate that loyalty as long as it is convenient and to their advantage. David and Jonathan’s loyalty went beyond convenience and advantage.
Here are some qualities of a loyal person. A loyal person:
- Is “true blue” all the time and everywhere except when loyalty to God takes precedence 2 Samuel 11:6-11(Uriah to David).
- Proudly identifies with you publicly (shows visible/vocal support) 2 Kings 2:3; Matthew 12:30 (Elisha for Elijah).
- Gladly adjusts their schedule to accommodate you in a time of need Pr. 17:17; 2 Samuel 23:15-17 (David’s Mighty men for David).
- Feels protective of you and will defend you in your absence (Jeremiah 47:10 silence when you should defend (take out your sword) is the first stage of disloyalty; 1 Samuel 19:1-7.
- Will warn you of impending danger and traps set by adversarial people 1 Samuel 19:1-7; Acts 20:31.
- Never enters into a covenant of friendship with anyone plotting to hurt you 2 Samuel 15:7-12 (like Ahithophel did to David).
- Will never use private information to hurt you 1 Samuel 23:16-18; Pr, 11:3 (Jonathan could have revealed what he knew about where David was hiding).
- Will forfeit the rewards of other relationships to stay by your side 1 Samuel 23:16-18 (Jonathan for David; Moses for God’s people Hebrews 11:24-27).