I Samuel 25
I Samuel 24 left off with Saul finally catching up to David; however, he did not know he had because at the time, he was in a cave taking care of some personal business of removing bodily waste, while David and his men were also in the same cave hiding out from him. David sneaks up on Saul and cuts off a little piece of his robe and after Saul finishes and leaves the cave, David and his men--who had tried to convince David of slaying Saul while he was taking care of his business--step out of the cave and when Saul is far enough away from the, David calls out to his father-in-law to tell him that had he wanted to, he could have killed the king, he then held up the piece of material that he had cut off of the king's robe as proof of his statement; however, this was not his desire, nor would have Father approved of his taking the life of Father's anointed.
Saul realized, as soon as the evil spirit left off from him, that, David was correct, that he meant no harm to the king, that he would be the next king of Israel, and he asked that David not cut off his seed after he took the throne. David for his part had no intention of taking the life of his in-laws, besides, if you'll recall, Jonathan and he had made several covenants between the two men, that they would always remain friends and loyal to each other.
Saul then departs for home while David and his men return to their stronghold in the caves and hillside of En-gedi. And this is where we pick it up in I Samuel 25.
16:1-27:4 CHOICE OF DAVID. (Division.)
17:1-27:4 David opposed by Saul.
17:1-27:4 DAVID OPPOSED BY SAUL. (Extended Alternation.)
20:1-27:4 Saul’s hostility to David.
23:19-27:4 PURSUIR OF DAVID. (Alternation.)
23:29-26:25 Places of refuge.
23:29-26:25 PLACES OF REFUGE. (Introversion.)
25:1-44 ACTIONS OF NABAL. (Introversions and Alternations.)
25:1 David. Personal. Other dwelling.
I Samuel 25:1 And Samuel died; and all the Israelites were gathered together, and lamented him, and buried him in his house at Ramah. And David arose, and went down to the wilderness of Paran (Peace of caverns or ornamental). -> Samuel= Samuel was a prophet, a judge and also an intercessor for Israel much like Moses; and, not since the time of Moses had there been a man to turn the heart of the Nation toward YHVH as Moses had been. Upon Samuel’s death the Nation turned from being a theocracy to a monarchy, likewise also, upon his death the nation would never again be run by the priesthood.
Buried him at his house at Ramah=This does not mean that they buried him in his house, it does mean that at this time, it was common for people to have burial gardens set aside on their property for when they passed from the flesh life to return Home to Father.
Lamented him=The people lamented Samuel almost like they desired a second Moses to lead them.
Down to the wilderness of Paran=The desert of Arabia. This statement is a statement of fact as the topography in this region is a more than day’s journey continuous decent down into the Negev.
Paran=a desert or wilderness, bounded on the north by Palestine, on the east by the valley of Arabah, on the south by the desert of Sinai, and on the west by the wilderness of Etham, which separated it from the Gulf of Suez and Egypt. The first notice of Paran is in connection with the invasion of the confederate kings (Genesis 14:6). The detailed itinerary of the children of Israel in (Numbers 33:1)... does not mention Paran because it was the name of a wide region; but the many stations in Paran are recorded, chs. 17-36. and probably all the eighteen stations were mentioned between Hazeroth and Kadesh were in Paran. Through this very wide wilderness, from pasture to pasture as do modern Arab tribes, the Israelites wandered in irregular lines of march. This region through which the Israelites journeyed so long is now called by the name it has borne for ages --Bedu et-Tih , "the wilderness of wandering." ("Bible Geography," Whitney.) "Mount" Paran occurs only in two poetic passages, (33:2); Habb 3:3 It probably denotes the northwestern member of the Sinaitic mountain group which lies adjacent to the Wady Teiran . (It is probably the ridge or series of ridges lying on the northeastern part of the desert of Paran, not far from Kadesh. --ED.).
25:2-4 Nabal’s wealth.
I Samuel 25:2 And there was a man in Maon (habitation or a residence), whose possessions were in Carmel; and the man was very great, and he had three thousand sheep, and a thousand goats: and he was shearing his sheep in Carmel (a fruitful place or park or a fruitful or plentiful field). -> This man’s name—as we’ll soon find out—is Nabal, he lives in Maon; however, all his livestock are in Carmel. The reason his livestock was in Carmel was because it was sheep shearing time, and right after they shore the sheep, they took the wool to market, that means it was a time of plenty, a time of festivals when everyone celebrated.
Three thousand sheep and a thousand goats=As we see, Nabal is a wealthy man, he probably got that way by dealing deceitfully with those who he had dealings with. So, in other words, all of his wealth was from ill-gotten gains.
If you’ll recall, it was during sheep shearing time that Judah used to go and visit the lady’s, it was also how he was snared by his daughter-in-law Tamar who he lay with and then begat Pharez and Zarah. It was through the seedline of Pharez that Boaz, Obed, Jesse and now David came through.
Maon=one of the cities of the tribe of Judah, in the district of the mountains (Joshua 15:55). Its interest for us lies in its connection with David (I Samuel 23:24-25). The name of Maon still exists in Main , a lofty conical hill, south of and about seven miles distant from Hebron.
Carmel=A mountain which forms one of the most striking and characteristic features of the country of Palestine. It is a noble ridge, the only headland of lower and central Palestine, and forms its southern boundary, running out with a bold bluff promontory, nearly 600 feet high, almost into the very waves of the Mediterranean, then extending southeast for a little more than twelve miles, when it terminates suddenly in a bluff somewhat corresponding to its western end. In form, Carmel is a tolerably continuous ridge, its highest point, about four miles from the eastern end, being 1740 feet above sea level. That which has made the name of Carmel most familiar to the modern world is its intimate connection with the history of the two great prophets of Israel, Elijah and Elisha (I Kings 18:20-42, II Kings 2:25; 4:25). It is now commonly called Mar Elyas; Kurmel being occasionally, but only seldom, hear. Also, a town in the mountainous country of Judah (Joshua 15:55), familiar to us as the residence of Nabal (I Samuel 25:2,5,7,40).
I Samuel 25:3 Now the name of the man was Nabal (fool or dolt); and the name of his wife Abigail (father [that is] source of joy): and she was a woman of good understanding, and of a beautiful countenance: but the man was churlish and evil in his doings; and he was of the house of Caleb. -> Nabal=Though his name means fool, I’m not too sure that was what or why his parents named him this; however, as we’ll quickly discover, he lives up to his name sake, and that is what this word “churlish” means (cruel, obstinate or stiff-necked). Likewise also, Nabal’s wife Abigail too lives up to her name sake. Whereas Nabal will refuse to assist David and his men when they ask, Abigail will take-up the slack and readily assist them.
Note the introversion and the order of the names of the man and his wife in this verse: Nabal, then Abigail, then Abigail again and then finishing off with Nabal.
Nabal=A sheepmaster on the confines of Judea and the desert, in that part of the country which bore from its great conqueror the name of Caleb (I Samuel 25:3; 30:14) (B.C. about 1055). His residence was on the southern Carmel, in the pasture lands of Maon. His wealth, as might be expected from his abode, consisted chiefly of sheep and goats. It was the custom of the shepherds to drive them into the wild downs on the slopes of Carmel; and it was whilst they were on one of these pastoral excursions that they met a band of outlaws, who showed them unexpected kindness, protecting them by day and night, and never themselves committing any depredations (I Samuel 25:7,15,18). Once a year there was a grand banquet on Carmel, "like the feast of a king" (I Samuel 25:2,4; 36). It was on one of these occasions that ten youths from the chief of the freebooters approached Nabal, enumerated the services of their master, and ended by claiming, with a mixture of courtesy and defiance characteristic of the East, "whatsoever cometh into thy hand for thy servants and for thy son David." The great sheepmaster peremptorily refused. The moment that the messengers were gone, the shepherds that stood by perceived the danger that their master and themselves would incur. To Nabal himself they durst not speak (I Samuel 25:17). To his wife, as to the good angel of the household, one of the shepherds told the state of affairs. She, with the offerings usual on such occasions, with her attendants running before her, rode down the hill toward David's encampment. David had already made the fatal vow of extermination (I Samuel 26:22). At this moment, as it would seem, Abigail appeared, threw herself on her face before him, and poured forth her petition in language which in both form and expression almost assumes the tone of poetry. She returned with the news of David's recantation of his vow. Nabal was then at the height of his orgies and his wife dared not communicate to him either his danger or his escape (I Samuel 28:36). At break of day she told him both. The stupid reveller was suddenly roused to a sense of that which impended over him. "His heart died within him, and he became as a stone." It was as if a stroke of apoplexy or paralysis had fallen upon him. Ten days he lingered "and the Lord smote Nabal, and he died" (I Samuel 27:37-38).
I Samuel 25:4 And David heard in the wilderness that Nabal did shear his sheep. -> Everybody knew when it was sheep shearing time and even though they were on the run, David and his men were protecting Nabal’s men from some of the marauding bands that roamed these lands during the time of sheep shearing. It was through Nabal's men that David and his men heard that Nabal was attending this sheep shearing, so David will send some of his men to inquire of Nabal as to whether he will provide them with some provisions while they are on the lam from Saul.
25:5-12 David’s message to Nabal.
25:5-12 DAVID’S MESSAGE TO NABAL. (Alternations.)
25:5-8 Message of David.
I Samuel 25:5 And David sent out ten young men, and David said unto the young men, “Get you up to Carmel, and go to Nabal, and greet him in my name: -> David tells his men to go to Nabal, greet him and let him know that they are here in the wilderness with his men.
I Samuel 25:6 And thus shall ye say to him that liveth in prosperity, ‘Peace be both to thee, and peace be to thine house, and peace be unto all that thou hast. -> Peace be...=This is a friendly salutation and also an asking of Father to Bless Nabal and all that he has. It's a good introduction to what comes next out of David's men's mouths, which will be David's request.
There is nothing wrong with David's leading up to his asking a favor of Nabal, the problem will come in when Nabal hears how many men David has with him and how large a food supply he'll need to feed them all.
I Samuel 25:7 And now I have heard that thou hast shearers: now thy shepherds which were with us, we hurt them not, neither was there ought missing unto them, all the while they were in Carmel. -> David's men say unto Nabal, that while they were in the wilderness with Nabal's men, they provided protection to Nabal's men and livestock from the marauding bands and also from other wild animals which would come to eat the sheep and goats. They further tell Nabal that while they did all this, they never asked for payment either by food or money, nor did they steal any of Nabal's livestock for themselves.
Remember, David before slaying Goliath and then being anointed as the next king of Israel was himself a shepherd boy, so tending these flocks was nothing new to him, as a matter of fact he probably enjoyed it very much as it probably brought back some good memories from his youth.
I Samuel 25:8 Ask thy young men, and they will shew thee. Wherefore let the young men find favour in thine eyes: for we come in a good day: give, I pray thee, whatsoever cometh to thine hand unto thy servants, and to thy son David.’” -> Ask thy young men=David's men start out by telling Nabal to go and ask his shepherd's if what David is presenting him is not the truth.
David's men continue telling Nabal of David's request and his reminding Nabal that they have come after the shearing has been completed and the festivals have started with everybody sharing in on the Blessings.
Now comes David's actual request: Please be favorable unto us and give as you deem you can afford. Notice several things in David's request of Nabal: (1) He more-or-less declares himself a son of Nabal's in as much as one who provides a service such as David and his men did when they provided the protection of Nabal's men and livestock; and (2) David doesn't outright ask for any specific number of livestock, he leaves that up to Nabal to determine how much he would like to contribute to David, his men and their families and also David's cause.
Remember, and David is also hoping Nabal remembers too, that David and his men--along with some of these men's families--are on the run from Saul who has been trying to kill him; therefore, they haven't had time to stop to set up camp anywhere long enough to establish gardens or anything of that nature. Therefore, they have been having to more-or-less beg for food from whomever they can in order to survive. So, David is hoping that Nabal's generosity will be overflowing and he'll donate many livestock for them to be able to eat for several days.
25:9 Delivery by young men.
I Samuel 25:9 And when David's young men came, they spake to Nabal according to all those words in the name of David, and ceased. -> David's men told all David's request exactly as David told them to tell to Nabal and are now awaiting his reply.
What will Nabal's reply be? We are about to find out how and why Nabal lives up to his namesake of "fool" or "dolt," as he'll turn-down David's request.
25:10-11 Reply to David.
I Samuel 25:10 And Nabal answered David's servants, and said, “Who is David? and who is the son of Jesse? there be many servants now a days that break away every man from his master. -> There be many servants now a days that break away= Nabal--the fool--starts off by acting as if he doesn't know David or of the protection that he and his men have provided to Nabal; not only that, but, he also more-or-less calls David a vagabond or run away servant of the king's. So, in other words, he is saying that David should have stayed home with the king - like David really had a choice to do that.
I Samuel 25:11 Shall I then take my bread, and my water, and my flesh that I have killed for my shearers, and give it unto men, whom I know not whence they be?” -> Bread=This means food in general, not just actual bread; water=the Septuagint reads "wine." Anyway, this fool is asking David's ten young men why he should have to give up his sustenance for men that he doesn't know. He is in essence saying: I don't know Jesse; I don't know his son David; nor do I know the men that he has with him. There sure are a lot of "I don't know(s);" but, notice also, all the "my(s)."
How will David respond to Nabal's rebuttal? Let's read and find out.
25:12 Report by young men.
I Samuel 25:12 So David's young men turned their way, and went again, and came and told him all those sayings. -> After being denied and belittled by Nabal, David's men return to him in the wilderness of Carmel. These were proud men and we see they did no arguing or begging with Nabal, they just picked-up their things and returned to David.
David for his part endured many things which were done against him by Saul without fighting back or retaliating; however, this was a belittling of his men and for this David won't stand allow it, he's about to lose his cool. For someone who is about to be the next king of the Nation, this isn't really a good thing to do, as it shows a lack of judgment and character, to react to ones emotions and let yourself be driven by your feelings.
25:13 Resentment of David.
I Samuel 25:13 And David said unto his men, “Gird ye on every man his sword.” And they girded on every man his sword; and David also girded on his sword: and there went up after David about four hundred men; and two hundred abode by the stuff. -> David allows his feeling to push him to the brink of going to war against Nabal, and he tells all his men to suit-up and prepare for the punishment they were about to inflict on Nabal and the sheep shearers he had taken with him.
Truly Nabal should not have denied and\or disparaged David's men, especially considering all the protection and assistance they had given Nabal, his men and livestock out here in the wilderness. He should have at least offered to share some of his wealth or livestock to David; but, since he hasn't and heaped scorn upon David's men, David is about to take what he deems right. Remember, these people--including Nabal and his family--will be David's subjects when he takes the throne, and though, yes he's angry that the "fool" ran his mouth at David's men for their asking him a little of his wealth, he should have kept his head and remembered who he is soon to be. It's never a good thing for a king to attack his own people, we see that happen on an almost daily basis today with our current usurper-in-charge, throwing a hissy-fit and then belittling those who disagree with him; but, for what David is about to do, Father is going to intercede and prevent him from enacting revenge on the "dolt."
Stuff=All their families, baggage and belongings. David takes two thirds of the men with him and leaves a third behind to guard and protect what they leave out here in the wilderness so that they were not completely defenseless from the criminal element which roamed the area. David uses good common sense here in doing this; however, in the future when all the families and possessions are in Ziklag while David and his army are off fighting, the Amalekites come in and take David's wives and all the other men's women captive and carry them off, he should have done like he is doing here and left some of his men behind to protect them.
25:14-17 Report of David to Abigail.
I Samuel 25:14 But one of the young men told Abigail, Nabal's wife, saying, “Behold, David sent messengers out of the wilderness to salute our master; and he railed on them. -> One of the young men=Whether this was one who was with Nabal and overheard how he treated David's men or whether it was on who overheard when they returned, Father's Word does not say; however, suffice it to be that one of Nabal the fool's men, quickly realized the danger that Nabal put himself, his family and his men in and ran back to his--Nabal's--house and tells his wife that her husband is living up to his namesake and acting the fool and putting everybody in a dangerous situation.
Railed on them=This means that Nabal flew off the handle at David's men and stormed at them screaming "who is Jesse and who is David that I should give my bread and my water to someone I don't even know?"
I Samuel 25:15 But the men were very good unto us, and we were not hurt, neither missed we any thing, as long as we were conversant with them, when we were in the fields: -> This man continues telling Abigail that David's men had never allowed any harm to come to them or her husband's livestock. They always protected them and were friendly with them and treated them with respect. Now Nabal, because of his pride and foolishness is about to bring great harm upon us all.
Hurt=Meaning "shamed," Nabal should have paid attention, for he sure did put David's men to shame when they came to him seeking a small favor.
I Samuel 25:16 They were a wall unto us both by night and day, all the while we were with them keeping the sheep. -> This servant of Nabal and Abigail's continues and tells Abigail that her husband may claim that he doesn't know David; however, I and the rest of you workers know him and we know also his men as they have always been a hedge between us and any harm that tried to come our way.
A wall unto us both day and night=This should remind us of the wall of protection via a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night that Father provided the Israelites during their departure from Egypt found in Exodus 13: Exodus 13:21 And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of a cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night: [13:22] He took not away the pillar of the cloud by day, nor the pillar of fire by night, from before the people..
I Samuel 25:17 Now therefore know and consider what thou wilt do; for evil is determined against our master, and against all his household: for he is such a son of Belial, that a man cannot speak to him.” -> This servant tells Abigail that he would have gone to Nabal and try to reason with him to change his mind and give David and his men some provisions; however, your husband is hard-headed and won't listen to anybody. Remember, back in verse v25:3 we read that Nabal was churlish, meaning he is cruel, obstinate and stiff-necked.
Son of Belial=Remember this is Hebrew word number H1100 - בּליּעל, - belıya‛al, pronounced - bel-e-yah'-al, and means: From H1097 and H3276; without profit, worthlessness; by extension destruction, wickedness(often in connection with H376, H802, H1121, etc.): - Belial, evil, naughty, ungodly (men), wicked., while in the Greek, it is Greek word number G955 - Βελίαλ, - Belial, pronounced - bel-ee'-al, and means: Of Hebrew origin [H1100]; worthlessness; Belial, as an epithet of Satan: - Belial., so in other words, this servant of Nabal and Abigail's is calling Nabal an offspring of satan.
What will Abigail do now?
25:18-20 Abigail’s present prepared.
I Samuel 25:18 Then Abigail made haste, and took two hundred loaves, and two bottles of wine, and five sheep ready dressed, and five measures of parched corn, and an hundred clusters of raisins, and two hundred cakes of figs, and laid them on asses. -> One of the first things we notice with this verse are the "and(s)," and we know this to be a polysyndeton and means that there is much more taking place in the verse than what has been said. Here, Abigail's thought and care with which she is acting is emphasized, as well as the rapidity and urgency with which she is moving in order to meet David's request.
Abigail had already prepared all this food--the two hundred loaves, the wine, sheep, corn, raisins and figs--to take to the festival after the sheep shearing had been completed. So, what she did here was, loaded all the food onto the donkeys and re-directs this food which was headed to the festival to now go to David and his men. This is a very generous offering by Abigail, you might even call this offering a "Peace Offering" as she is preparing this in order to prevent them from exacting revenge for the way that Nabal the fool treated David's men. Normally a "Peace Offering" is presented to Father and in a sense, that is what Abigail is doing; as, she is offering it to David and his men in hope of pleasing Father for angering His anointed so that His anger is not carried-out against one who came against Him..
I Samuel 25:19 And she said unto her servants, “Go on before me; behold, I come after you.” But she told not her husband Nabal. -> Abigail prepared had packed everything without discussing it with her husband, she knew, like the servant who came to her did, that Nabal was just too pigheaded to be reasoned with, and he probably would have prevented her from taking these modest gifts to David and his men.
Abigail knows just what these meek gifts will do, they'll save the community from being slaughtered because of his husband's arrogant and foolish actions and treatment of those who treated him with kindness.
Abigail wisely sends her servants, men who David and his men knew from previous meetings, before her so as not to startle them or cause them to think that maybe it was others of Nabal's coming to go up against David and his men.
I Samuel 25:20 And it was so, as she rode on the ass, that she came down by the covert of the hill, and, behold, David and his men came down against her; and she met them. -> Covert of the hill=Think of this as a shallow valley, or, a depression in the ground which provided some protection to David and his men. Anyway, Abigail sends her servants with the asses laden with the provisions she had prepared on a head of her and as soon as she rides into this covert, David and a few of his men ride up to her and she continues right into the midst of them. Abigail is a courageous woman, she knew that David was coming to do harm to her family and friends; however, she did not consider David to be her enemy, but a friend, and now she was here making a petition to her friend, David. See the brave heart that Abigail had, she did this without any hesitation whatsoever. David knew the type of woman she was from when he was in the town defending it from the Philistines.
25:21-22 Resentment of David.
I Samuel 25:21 Now David had said, “Surely in vain have I kept all that this fellow hath in the wilderness, so that nothing was missed of all that pertained unto him: and he hath requited me evil for good. -> David at this point is still pretty angry and he tells Abigail of his anger. He says to her that he and his men have provided protection and company to Nabal and his men, never allowing even one of Nabal's livestock to come up missing, they didn't eat of Nabal's food, but provided for themselves and in return Nabal has only repaid us by spitting in our face and then turning us away. David is feeling pretty much like he had been stabbed-in-the-back, as he and his men took it upon themselves to provide the protection and friendship to Nabal and his men; but, all they got in return were insults and treatment like they were vagabonds and run-away slaves. With David being Father's anointed, these insults are then not only directed at David but at Father Himself, not and intelligent thing to do. Again, much like our usurper-in-charge today, he hurls insults and demeaning comments at Christians and pastors telling them they have to change to meet him and his wants and forsake what Father tells us in His Word we should do.
I Samuel 25:22 So and more also do God unto the enemies of David, if I leave of all that pertain to him by the morning light any that pisseth against the wall.” -> David's anger has him fired-up enough that his intent is to slaughter every male in Nabal's family, household and community before the sun rises the next morning.
This verse is saying that as Father punishes and defeats the enemies of His and David's; surely, David is going to thrash Nabal and his house and all that is his.
25:23-31 Abigail’s present presented.
I Samuel 25:23 And when Abigail saw David, she hasted, and lighted off the ass, and fell before David on her face, and bowed herself to the ground, -> When Abigail saw David=Abigail recognized David because of his victories for the Nation of Israel. Remember, after he had defeated Goliath, he became famous, and, then Saul had set him up to be the Nation's Chief Warfighter. So everybody knew David by sight.
We see Abigail's urgency in this verse as well; for, as soon as she sees David, she immediately jumps off the ass she is riding and bows before David and the horse he is riding. Abigail very humbly and respectfully submits to David in order to prevent him from completely wiping-out everything she and Nabal have and also the town Carmel. This is quite a difference that what David's men received by way of Nabal.
I Samuel 25:24 And fell at his feet, and said, “Upon me, my lord, upon me let this iniquity be: and let thine handmaid, I pray thee, speak in thine audience, and hear the words of thine handmaid. -> Abigail asks David to lay all the blame of her husband upon her, and, in turn, she will make it up to him and his men by providing not just the provisions they had asked for; but, more, in fact, several day's worth.
Iniquity=In the Hebrew, this is - 'avah=perverseness, from the root to be bent, or crooked. English wrong, i.e. wrung out of course, expresses it (compare with I Samuel 20:30, II Samuel 19:19, I Kings 8:47, Job 33:37 and other following).
I Samuel 25:25 Let not my lord, I pray thee, regard this man of Belial, even Nabal: for as his name is, so is he; Nabal is his name, and folly is with him: but I thine handmaid saw not the young men of my lord, whom thou didst send. -> Man of belial=Even Abigail--because of his actions--calls her husband a "son of satan." She also reminds David that Nabal was just acting in accordance with his name - fool.
She then tells David that she had not seen the ten young men that David had sent to ask for provisions, and had she; they would not right now be in the quandary that she finds herself.
I Samuel 25:26 Now therefore, my lord, as the LORD liveth, and as thy soul liveth, seeing the LORD hath withholden thee from coming to shed blood, and from avenging thyself with thine own hand, now let thine enemies, and they that seek evil to my lord, be as Nabal. -> Abigail continues by telling David that she prays that any and every enemy of David's turns into a fool as large as her husband is; so, that, David always has the victory over them.
After hearing all that Abigail tells David, how could he not submit to her? He more-or-less becomes as butter-in-her-hot-hands: he just melts. This young lady with the abilities she has to de-fuse difficult situations would make a fine asset to any country as their Foreign Ambassador or Secretary of State.
Listen to what she had actually said "the LORD hath withholden thee;" as, she even gives credit to Father for sending her to be in front of David to prevent him from exacting revenge for Nabal angering him so fiercely.
I Samuel 25:27 And now this blessing which thine handmaid hath brought unto my lord, let it even be given unto the young men that follow my lord. -> David saw as they rode up that she didn't come empty-handed; however, Abigail still saved the best for last; she now presents him and his men with the asses laden-down with the provisions. Abigail plays David just right, not as a fool; but, as somebody important, or as an inferior country admitting they offended a superior country. At this point, really, David has not reason for his anger to subside and accept the gift he has been presented with.
I Samuel 25:28 I pray thee, forgive the trespass of thine handmaid: for the LORD will certainly make my lord a sure house; because my lord fighteth the battles of the LORD, and evil hath not been found in thee all thy days. -> Father has truly Blessed the woman with wisdom and knowledge. She readily accepts--yet again--the responsibility for her husband's actions and, she then encourages David by telling him that he fights the LORD's battles and does so courageously and justly, so why should he now turn from doing just and right to almost committing an act of murder by his slaying all the males of Carmel because of one foolish man - Nabal?
The LORD will certainly make my lord a sure house=Abigail could be considered a prophetess, listen to what she says here and in the next three verses. Without knowing that David has been anointed to be the next king of Israel, she is telling him that he will be; but, even more importantly she even prophesies that David will tell Father that he will build Him a house in order to put the Ark of the Covenant in it; however, Father will rebuke him, which can be found II Samuel 7: II Samuel 7:4 And it came to pass that night, that the word of the LORD came unto Nathan, saying, -> Father heard the conversation between David and Nathan, He also heard Nathan tell David to do all that was in his heart—to go ahead and build that house for YHVH. Now Father is going to tell Nathan what He thinks and what Nathan is now to tell David from Father. [7:5] “Go and tell my servant David, ‘Thus saith the LORD, ‘Shalt thou build me an house for me to dwell in? [7:6] Whereas I have not dwelt in any house since the time that I brought up the children of Israel out of Egypt, even to this day, but have walked in a tent and in a tabernacle. [7:7] In all the places wherein I have walked with all the children of Israel spake I a word with any of the tribes of Israel, whom I commanded to feed my people Israel, saying, ‘Why build ye not me an house of cedar?’’’ -> Father is telling Nathan to say to David that since the day He brought Moses and the children of Israel up out of Egypt He has never asked anyone to build Him a house for Him to dwell in. [7:8] Now therefore so shalt thou say unto My servant David, ‘Thus saith the LORD of hosts, ‘I took thee from the sheepcote, from following the sheep, to be ruler over my people, over Israel: -> Father is reminding David that it was He who took him from being a sheep herder and had Samuel anoint him as the second king of Israel. [7:9] And I was with thee whithersoever thou wentest, and have cut off all thine enemies out of thy sight, and have made thee a great name, like unto the name of the great men that are in the earth. -> The reputation that David had and will have in the future was placed in man's minds by YHVH Himself. The victories he and the Nation had, and the enemies which fled before them were caused by the powers which Father brought to the battlefield. Even David’s courage which he had when he faced the giant Goliath, was placed in David by Father, and when the enemy saw the stone enter into their hero's head, they all ran in fear of YHVH, not because of the boy David. It is Father Who gives us the gifts that we have, all of them, and we must never forget to give Him the credit, especially when we use those gifts to the glory of Father. It is Father Who builds up and tares down whomsoever He will, it is He Who puts all men (no gender involved) in their positions of power. [7:10] Moreover I will appoint a place for My People Israel, and will plant them, that they may dwell in a place of their own, and move no more; neither shall the children of wickedness afflict them any more, as beforetime, -> Yes, Father established the Nation of Israel in the year 1948; however, this was not the True place where He will establish them so that they will no more be plucked up out of that land, that won’t happen until after the Millennium and the Great White Throne Judgment. [7:11] And as since the time that I commanded judges to be over My People Israel, and have caused thee to rest from all thine enemies. Also the LORD telleth thee that He will make thee an house. -> Father is saying that before there was a king, and even before the time of the judges, He promised that He would build a house. We have to focus on the spiritual side of this verse, for this house is the house which is made up of believers. This house that Father is speaking of here is the house spoken of by Jesus in Matthew 24; when He said "...tear down this temple and I will rebuild it in three days". It is the body of Christ, through David: this is the key of David. Father has His plan and when we try to stay within His plan, then we are being pleasing Him. [7:12] And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. -> This is a two-fold promise, one for the near term which was Solomon, and one for a future date, one even future to us living today: 2013 - Christ's sitting on the Throne as King of kings, whose Kingdom shall never end. [7:13] He shall build an house for My name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. -> Solomon did build the temple for YHVH, the physical building of which only the Western Wall stands today; however, Jesus built the many membered body which not only is thriving today, it is also still growing and will stand forever. [7:14] I will be his Father, and he shall be My son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men: -> Solomon was righteous when he first took over as king of Israel, he even asked Father--when He appeared unto Solomon in a dream in I Kings 3--for wisdom, understanding of heart and righteous judgment; however, as time wore on and he grew more powerful, he took unto himself many wives--700 and 300 concubines--and committed the iniquity by worshipping their gods (notice the lower case "g") which angered Father to the point that He divided the House into two separate Houses: House of Israel and House of Judah. [7:15] But My mercy shall not depart away from him, as I took it from Saul, whom I put away before thee. -> Because of Solomon's worshipping of false gods, Father separated the Nation; but, not during Solomon's rein, it wasn't until after he died and returned Home to Father and his sons reined as kings. [7:16] And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever.’’” -> This is future even to us today; this will be when Jesus sits on the Throne in the eternity. [7:17] According to all these words, and according to all this vision, so did Nathan speak unto David.
I Samuel 25:29 Yet (if) a man is risen to pursue thee, and to seek thy soul: but the soul of my lord shall be bound in the bundle of life with the LORD thy God; and the souls of thine enemies, them shall he sling out, as out of the middle of a sling. -> Bundle of life=Bag (much like the shepherd's bag that David carried in I Samuel 17:40 and 17:49 when he faced the giant goliath) of life. Also at this time, if one had valuables, they kept them in a bag for safe keeping, and that is what Abigail is saying of David here, that Father keep him safe as something valuable and precious to Him.
Sling out=Keeping with David's shepherd's bag and when he faced Goliath, this sling out is like the stones David drew out of that bag and placed in his sling to slay the giant.
I Samuel 25:30 And it shall come to pass, when the LORD shall have done to my lord according to all the good that he hath spoken concerning thee, and shall have appointed thee ruler over Israel; -> Listen to Abigail's prophesying, for the words that were coming out of her mouth, it could only have been the Holy Spirit speaking through her; for, the words which she spoke concerning David; were correct for at that time, even to the point of reminding David that Father has a plan for his life. David was the anointed one to be the ruler over His people, and also having the Messiah come through his seedline, and, David was absorbing Abigail's prophesying these words concerning him. David needed to hear these words to be spoken at this time, and Father used this woman to give them to him. It was not necessary to wipe out Nabal’s friends just because they had a fool for a master.
I Samuel 25:31 That this shall be no grief unto thee, nor offence of heart unto my lord, either that thou hast shed blood causeless, or that my lord hath avenged himself: but when the LORD shall have dealt well with my lord, then remember thine handmaid.” -> Abigail is reminding David that when he takes over the kingdom that his forgiveness of Nabal--should he chose to do so--be of no grief or offense to him, nor should--if he desire--to exact revenge upon Nabal it be a grief unto him; however, his taking of innocent blood by killing all the males, that would be detrimental to him and instead, it would be best if he allows Father to exact vengeance upon His enemies. David really cannot argue with Abigail or her logic here, as, she really is telling the truth and speaking righteously.
The point to Abigail’s speech is this: it is the Lord Who should avenge his people and if there is any bloodshed, it is up to the Lord to do the avenging. We know that Father declares that “vengeance is Mine” and therefore we too should not exact revenge upon our enemies; however, we should also not be doormats and allow people to walk all over us. Sadly, it is from this chapter that false teaching has caused many wimps in the world. The point is, that you should not shed blood for no reason, for there must be a crime deserving of death, before blood is shed. Just because vengeance belongeth to God, you are still to protect and defend yourself and your family. You must defend you dignity and your respect, for people like Nabal simply don't respect a wimp, or coward or someone that hides under the guise of religion. We are to pray to the Father as to what we should do, and listen to his leading. It may be that force is required to put evil in its place.
After advising David how he should conduct himself, and reminding him that he will be the next king of Israel, she then petitions him to not forget her or their conversation when he takes the throne, to treat her with respect and kindness.
25:32-35 Answer of David to Abigail.
I Samuel 25:32 And David said to Abigail, “Blessed be the LORD God of Israel, which sent thee this day to meet me: -> David is starting to come to his senses here, and, he now gives credit to Father for sending Abigail to him in order that they could meet, the first thing he says is: "Blessed be the LORD" giving praise to Father for intervening on his behalf and preventing him from shedding innocent blood: not necessarily Nabal's, but, that of his men. Remember, he said he would slay every male; young and old alike.
I Samuel 25:33 And blessed be thy advice, and blessed be thou, which hast kept me this day from coming to shed blood, and from avenging myself with mine own hand. -> From coming to shed blood=In other words, to commit murder, which was what David would have been doing had he slain all the males in Carmel. Father's children need not take revenge on those who commit a trespass against them as YHVH will take vengeance upon them; yes, in certain cases we are to avenge ourselves, however, in most cases we are to let Him to do the avenging.
I Samuel 25:34 For in very deed, as the LORD God of Israel liveth, Which hath kept me back from hurting thee, except thou hadst hasted and come to meet me, surely there had not been left unto Nabal by the morning light any that pisseth against the wall.” -> David first tells and then thanks Abigail as he knows that it was only through her, and her wisdom and courage; that she has saved and all the men in their Carmel from death, David surely would have taken their lives had it not been for her. David has at this point forgotten the proverb which he so readily quoted back on I Samuel 24:13, when he said to her: I Samuel 24:13 As saith the proverb of the ancients, Wickedness proceedeth from the wicked: but mine hand shall not be upon thee..
I Samuel 25:35 So David received of her hand that which she had brought him, and said unto her, “Go up in peace to thine house; see, I have hearkened to thy voice, and have accepted thy person.” -> David accepted the "Peace Offering" of provisions she brought, told her that only through her actions and YHVH sending her to him, are the males of Carmel saved; he then sent her back home in peace.
25:36-38 Nabal’s death.
I Samuel 25:36 And Abigail came to Nabal; and, behold, he held a feast in his house, like the feast of a king; and Nabal's heart was merry within him, for he was very drunken: wherefore she told him nothing, less or more, until the morning light. -> After returning to her home; Abigail finds her husband Nabal throwing a big party, it was after all sheep shearing time. However, Nabal's treatment of David and his men really brought shame unto himself and the people of Carmel, not only that but, he about brought about the death of all the males. Abigail knew that Nabal was too drunk to accept the reality of the cause of his actions, so, she left him alone that night in order that she could tell him the next day of what harm he had almost caused. This verse sort of reminds me of a future event of Daniel 5 when Nebuchadnezzar's grandson Belshazzar was throwing a drunk-ex and had his servants bring the golden vessels which had been taken out of the temple in Jerusalem in order that he and his wives, concubines and the princes could drink out of them and defile them, it was that that he saw the "hand writing on the wall."
I Samuel 25:37 But it came to pass in the morning, when the wine was gone out of Nabal, and his wife had told him these things, that his heart died within him, and he became as a stone. -> So after sleeping-off his drunkenness, Nabal awakes in the morning and first thing, Abigail informs him of the foolishness of his actions, his pride, in which he had almost killed all the males in Carmel. Immediately his heart turns to stone and he has a stroke. Many of the scholars wrestle with this verse and as to the cause of what truly happened, whether it was Abigail's giving the sheep and other provisions to David and his men or some other such reason. I don't figure it was the giving of the sheep as Abigail only gave David 5 sheep and after all, Nabal had 3,000, so, that shouldn't have put a dent in his wealth, especially not enough to cause him to have a stroke. No matter, because, it does come down to YHVH avenging His anointed, and that is what happened, much like when Lot's wife after they being told to flee Sodom and Gomorrah and not look back, she had indeed looked back because in her heart she was going to miss the filth that they were fleeing from and as soon as she did, she turned to a pillar of salt.
I Samuel 25:38 And it came to pass about ten days after, that the LORD smote Nabal, that he died. -> Ten days after suffering his stroke, Father brings Nabal Home to Him so He can have a "face to face" with Nabal, much like He did when Aaron's two sons Nadab and Abihu offered the "strange fire" to Father of which we can read in Leviticus 10, He immediately called them Home to Him also.
25:39-42 David’s message to Abigail.
I Samuel 25:39 And when David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, “Blessed be the LORD, That hath pleaded the cause of my reproach from the hand of Nabal, and hath kept his servant from evil: for the LORD hath returned the wickedness of Nabal upon his own head.” And David sent and communed with Abigail, to take her to him to wife. -> Blessed be the LORD...and hath kept his servant from evil=Here David correctly gives credit where it is due: to Father Who truly stayed his hand from committing murder. It was Father Who laid it on the heart of Abigail to go to David with the asses laden down with provisions for he and his men and their families.
David is so impressed with Abigail that he will send some of his men back to Carmel to offer his sympathies to Abigail, but, also to tell her that should she like, he would be pleased to have her as his wife.
I Samuel 25:40 And when the servants of David were come to Abigail to Carmel, they spake unto her, saying, “David sent us unto thee, to take thee to him to wife.” -> One thing we can see in this, is, that, David wasn't very good in courting women: he got his first wife Michal, Saul's daughter given to him because of his actions in slaying Israel's enemy Goliath and the Philistines and now here he takes his second wife by sending his men to more-or-less propose to her by simply stating, that he sent them "to take thee to wife." Abigail will bare David his second son Chileab.
I Samuel 25:41 And she arose, and bowed herself on her face to the earth, and said, “Behold, let thine handmaid be a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my lord.” -> With Nabal, Abigail's husband now deceased; she is free to marry another man. Some may feel it is a little too soon for David to be asking and for Abigail to be accepting; some may feel that David was taking advantage of Abigail or her situation; I feel it was neither: Abigail was an intelligent woman who possessed beauty and wisdom. She humbly accepts David's proposal.
I Samuel 25:42 And Abigail hasted, and arose, and rode upon an ass, with five damsels of hers that went after her; and she went after the messengers of David, and became his wife. -> As we have seen with this one Abigail, she sometimes has a sense of urgency about her, and here it is on display again. She wastes no time, preparing herself to go and be with David.
Stop and think about this for a moment; her husband who is now deceased was a wealthy man, and when he died, that left Abigail a wealthy woman, so, she didn't need a man to support her as she had the means--wealth--intelligence and wisdom to provide for herself. But, she was a modest woman and she saw in David strength and character, so she readily accepts.
We completely change subjects and time here in these next two verses.
25:43-44 David. Personal. Other wives.
I Samuel 25:43 David also took Ahinoam (brother of grace, i.e. gracious or brother of pleasantness) of Jezreel (seed of God or God will sow); and they were also both of them his wives. -> David is starting to acquire a collection of wives already. Though it is not uncommon at this time, Father did declare that when a man becomes king he is to not accumulate horses, this is in the same vein, because a man that has too many wives will have his attention directed away from Father and His business in order to satisfy his wives desires.
Ahinoam=this woman was a native of Jezreel who was married to David during his wandering life. (B.C. 1060.) She lived with him and Abigail at the court of Achish which we can read of in I Samuel 27:3, she will be taken prisoner with Abigail by the Amalekites when they plunder Ziklag in I Samuel 30, and will be rescued by David in the same chapter.
Jezreel=A city situated in the plain of the same name between Gilboa and Little Hermon, now generally called Esdraelon. It first appears in Father’s Word in Joshua 19:18 but its historical importance dates from the reign of Ahab, B.C. 918-897, who chose it for his chief residence. The situation of the modern village of Zerin still remains to show the fitness of his choice. In the neighborhood; or within the town probably, were a temple and grove of Eastward, with an establishment of 400 priests supported by Jezebel Ahab’s wife (I King’s 16:33 and II Kings 10:11). The palace of Ahab I Kings 18:46 and 21:1, probably containing his "ivory house," (I Kings 21:39) was on the eastern side of the city, forming part of the city wall. Whether the vineyard of Naboth was here or at Samaria is a doubtful question. Still in the same eastern direction are two springs, one 12 minutes from the town, the other 20 minutes. The latter, probably from both its size and its situation, was known as "the spring of Jezreel." With the fall of the house of Ahab the glory of Jezreel departed.
I Samuel 25:44 But Saul had given Michal his daughter, David's wife, to Phalti (my deliverance or delivered) the son of Laish (lion), which was of Gallim (fountains or springs). -> In order to strike at David, Saul--though he had previously given Michal who loved David--gives his daughter Michal to another man whose name is Phalti. Except for the brief mention here and the touching little episode in II Samuel 3:16 nothing more is heard of Phalti. This will not stand for as soon as Saul passes away, David will demand the return of his wife Michal from the Phalti.
Phalti=B.C. 1061. The son of Laish of Gallim, to whom Saul gave Michal in marriage after his mad jealousy had driven David forth as an outlaw (I Samuel 25:4-1). In (II Samuel 3:15) he is called Phalti-EL.
Laish=This is given as the native place of the man to whom Michal, David's wife, was given here in I Samuel 25:44. There is no clue to the situation of the place. The name occurs again in the catalogue of places terrified at the approach of Sennacherib (Isaiah 10:30).