מַחַר, חֹדֶשׁ; הַיּוֹם, סְכַּנְדָּל
Yesterday we read the haftara of Mahhar Hhodesh ("Tomorrow is New Month's Day"), from Shemu’eil/Samuel 1:20:18-42. It tells the story of [future King] David and Yonatan [son of Sha’ul, the present king], and how notwithstanding Sha’ul's paranoid fear and hatred of David, David and Yonatan were very close friends who cared deeply for each other. David avoided going to the Rosh Hhodesh meal of Yonatan's family, because he knew that Sha’ul wanted to kill him, and so Yonatan devised a way to warn him of impending danger.
Due to various ways the book of Shemu’eil describes the relationship between David and Yonatan, many people today have come to the conclusion that David and Yonatan had some kind of homosexual relationship. Now, I'm not actually going to discuss the evidence for or against such a reading, because what I want to discuss is something I am sure of — whether or not Yonatan and David had such a relationship, King Sha’ul definitely thought they did.
Shemu’eil/Samuel 1:20:30 —
And then Sha’ul's anger burned against Yonatan, and he said, "Son of perverted rebellion! Don't I know that you choose Yishai's son to your own shame and the shame of your mother's nakedness?!"
He then goes on to point out to his son that by supporting David, Yonatan is undermining his own chances to inherit the throne of Israel from his father. But what I find intriguing is the language that Sha’ul uses in berating Yonatan — it's sexual terminology. ‘ERVA (nakedness). BOSHET (shame or private). He doesn't say that Yonatan is "choosing" David 'to your downfall, and the downfall of your father's kingdom' (which would fit with the next verse), but 'to your shame, and the shame of your mother's nakedness'. And he refuses to spell out exactly what David has done to deserve capital punishment, simply chucking his spear at his son instead.