1 Samuel 25 gives us the story of Nabal and David. David had guarded Nabal’s livestock and sent some men to Nabal to ask for food. Nabal refused to give it to them. Nabal means “fool,” which is apt for this man because he lived up to it. His wife, Abigail (her name means “my father is joy”) had a much different response. The Bible account says that she was “discerning and beautiful.” She loaded up a whole bunch of good food and took it to David, who was on his way to wipe out Nabal’s household. She apologized and asked forgiveness for her husband’s actions. David granted it because of Abigail.
She fell at his feet and said, “On me alone, my lord, be the guilt. Please let your servant speak in your ears, and hear the words of your servant. Let not my lord regard this worthless fellow, Nabal, for as his name is, so is he. Nabal is his name, and folly is with him. But I your servant did not see the young men of my lord, whom you sent. Now then, my lord, as the LORD lives, and as your soul lives, because the LORD has restrained you from bloodguilt and from saving with your own hand, now then let your enemies and those who seek to do evil to my lord be as Nabal. (1 Samuel 25:24–26, ESV)
Abigail tells her husband what she did the morning after Nabal had a feast. The Bible account says he “became as stone” and died ten days later. Then David asked Abigail to be his wife. The interesting thing is her response.
And she rose and bowed with her face to the ground and said, “Behold, your handmaid is a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my lord.” (1 Samuel 25:41, ESV)
Abigail was not only discerning and beautiful, she was humble. Seven times in this passage she refers to herself as a servant (David also refers to himself as a servant of God). Humility is her strength. She knew what David had done to protect Nabal’s livestock and what a debt they owed to David and his men. But aside from that, according to the Word or Law, people were supposed to help those less fortunate. Israel was supposed to leave grain in the corners of the fields, grapes on the vines, and olives on the branches so that the needy could glean. At the very least Nabal should’ve given that much to David. Abigail not only recognizes that God is with David, she seems to also recognize both the debt and the obligation to provide for the hungry.
Today we have something a little different. We’ve got sluts like Sandra Fluke who not only bang anyone she wants, but also wants the taxpayer to subsidize her birth control so she can do it without concern. We’ve got actresses getting naked onscreen depicting the sex act and going through men like they go through designer gowns. Divorce is rampant, sex is devalued, and abortion no different than going to the bathroom. Instead of going against the “fools” we’ve got such equal opportunity that women have become the fools. Can you imagine a “modern woman” who would respond to a marriage proposal with “your handmaid is a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my lord?” Even the thought deserves a ROFL.
There are still a few gems here and there. Not all women have bought into the kingdoms of the world. A precious few have remained unsoiled and in humility serve God. Distressingly few. The world has gone Canaanite, but God still has a few that have not bowed the knee to Ba’al. For you there is a crown of life, and blessings pressed down and overflowing. Stand strong, girls. Stay humble. Serve the Lord and your husbands (or future husbands) and the Lord will reward you. Remember Abigail.