David and Abigail – 1 Samuel 25
In previous stories about David, we learned how he was anointed by Samuel to be God’s chosen future King of Israel. We learned how he killed the giant Goliath with a sling and a stone, fighting in the name of the LORD. (the earlier stories of David on this site are found under the category 1 and 2 Samuel) In this story we learn how David came to know Abigail, and how she became his wife.
There came a time when Samuel died and was buried, and David went down to a place called Paran. There was a man of Paran who was very rich with lots of sheep and goats. His name was Nabal, and he was a very foolish man. His wife’s name was Abigail. Abigail was a very wise and beautiful woman, but Nabal did evil things.
David heard that Nabal was shearing his sheep, and so he sent ten men to go to Nabal and tell him this: “Peace to you and your house, and everything that you have. I have not hurt you, nor stolen anything from you. Ask your young men, they will tell you. And so please give to my young men from the things that you have.”
But Nabal said “Who is David? Shall I take my bread and water, and my meat and give it to men that I do not know?” So David’s young men returned to him and told him what Nabal had said.
David told his 400 men that every one of them should take his sword. But one of Nabal’s men went to Abigail and told her what had happened, and how David’s men were very good to Nabal’s men, how they camped around them while they were tending the sheep. And he told Abigail that something terrible was going to happen against Nabal and all of his household.
Abigail hurried and took 200 loaves of bread, 2 bottles of wine, 5 sheep that had been prepared to eat, 5 portions of corn, 100 clusters of raisins, and 200 cakes made of figs, and laid all this on donkeys. She told her servants to go ahead of her, that she would come after. But she did not tell Nabal what she was doing. And so, as she rode her donkey, she met up with David and his men, who were going to fight against Nabal and his men. When Abigail saw David, she hurried and got off her donkey, and fell down before David. She said to him “Let this sin be upon me my lord. Let your handmaid speak to you, and please hear your handmaid. My lord, Nabal is a foolish man, please do not think of him. I did not see the young men you sent to him. Therefore my lord, as the LORD lives, and as you live, because the LORD has stopped you from shedding blood and avenging yourself, let your enemies be as foolish as Nabal. And this blessing which I have brought to you, let it be given to the young men that follow you.
And David said to Abigail, “Blessed be the LORD God of Israel, which sent you to me today. And blessed be your advice, and blessed be you who has kept me from avenging myself.” So David took everything she brought him and said “Go up in peace to your house. David recognized that it was God who sent Abigail to him to stop him from killing Nabal and his men.
Now when Abigail came home, Nabal was having a big feast in his house, and Abigail did not tell him what she had done. But in the morning, Abigail told Nabal everything that she had done, and his heart became like stone, and Nabal died 10 days after that.
And when David heard that Nabal was dead, he sent for Abigail, and she became his wife.
Memory Verse: 1 Samuel 25:24 “…Upon me, my lord, let this sin be”
1. Why did David think that Nabal should give food to his men? Answer: Because David had not hurt them, or stolen from them
2. What was Nabal’s answer when the young men asked for food? Answer: He said “why should I give food to men I do not know.”
3. What did Abigail first do when she heard what happened? Answer: She gathered a lot of food together and sent it to David and his men.
4. What was very special about what Abigail said to David? Answer: She asked David to take Nabal’s sin upon herself, even though she had done nothing wrong.
5. What happened to Nabal? Answer: When Abigail told him what she did, his heart turned to stone and he died 10 days later.
6. What happened to Abigail? Answer: When David heard that Nabal was dead he sent for her, and she became his wife.