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-WISDOM AND BEAUTY-
Abigail had tact and devout principles. A true believer of God. She was a very beautiful woman. Her name means 'the joy of the father'.
Abigail's knowledge testify to her as coming from a godly Jewish home. Beautiful and intelligent, she was entrapped in an unhappy marriage with a difficult man, by arrangement. Abigail had no choice in the matter because it was her parent's decision and they had chosen a prosperous husband for her.
Nabal was very wealthy. His large property was at Carmel, in the southern part of Judah, on the wilderness land of Paran. Nabal followed the things and wealth of the world, he was harsh and evil in his ways.
Abigail was a noble woman and did not seek to divorce her husband, but all throughout her married life she remained faithful to her husband.
The future king of Israel, David, who was fleeing from King Saul and his soldiers had been living in the wilderness. David's 600 men helped Abigail's husband's herdsmen over a period of time, David expected that he and his men be fed. When it came time for the sheep to be brought in out of the fields for shearing, her husband Nabal refused to give them food.
Abigail's husband had an arrogant attitude towards the future king even though he and his men helped guard and keep Nabal's wealth.
Being rudely insulted by Abigail's husband who was a continual drunkard, a stubborn and ill-tempered man, David, the future King of Israel was out for vengeance. David took 400 men with him.
David swore an oath that all members of Nabal's household would be killed.
Abigail's unique leadership of her household and staff enabled her servant to speak forthrightly to her and forewarned her of the immediate circumstance.
Abigail moved quickly to stop the death of the entire household. Abigail was quick to discern what her husband's behaviour had brought upon them by refusing David and his men food, after the protection that had been given them and to the herding servants of Nabal, against marauding gangs that constantly rampaged through the country side. They provided substantial protection for Nabal's flocks of sheep.
Abigail's first responsibility was to God, then to her husband. She demonstrated courageously the character traits of wisdom, respect and submisiveness.
Gathering food together and some wine, Abigail thought of the immediate need and rode on an ass to intercede and deter David, with self-control and calmness. Abigail had taken the food provisions without her husband's consent. She sensed the impending disaster if she did not act. Wisdom is better than weapons in time of armed conflict.
Abigail, upon meeting David bowed down before him asking forgiveness on behalf of her husband. She stopped David from personal vengeance and knew that vengeance was for The Lord to take.
Using intelligence, good understanding and charm Abigail was able to avert David's rage. Her calmness soothed David's anger. David listened to Abigail's wisdom and heeded her advice. She had earned respect from David for she knew the right order of priorities.
Abigail had stopped David from shedding innocent blood and from sinning against God. Abigail exerted great influence over David and he later recognised that she changed the direction of his life. David praised God for her wise intervention.
Abigail showed consideration for the future and was a support of David's integrity in view of the office he was later to assume. She had confidence in David's future accession to the Throne of Israel, whereas her husband did not.
Abigail assured David that God would keep his life in the midst of danger even though he was being hunted by a jealous obsessed King Saul.
Abigail's commonsense, charm and self-control won David's heart.
Abigail returned to her husband having saved his life and the lives of his entire staff. Abigail in her wisdom waited until the next day to tell her husband the occurrence because Nabal would then be sober, for he held a grand banquet that evening. When he was sober she wisely told her husband how she had arbitrated with David and stopped the massacre of the entire household.
Nabal had a stroke and died of heart failure ten days later. Shortly after when David heard the news of Nabal's death he asked for Abigail's hand in marriage.
Abigail accepted David's proposal of marriage with humility. She took five maids with her and rode on her donkey to be with David, as his wife, and together they had a son, whom they named Kileab.
Abigail had accompanied David by faith, he had not yet been crowned King. As David's wife, Abigail provided him a worthy and wise partner. She became the wife of the King.
A lesson to learn from Abigail is, as well as beauty, the mind must not be forgotten. A Christian woman today can choose her own husband and it is a wise choice to marry a believer.
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Managed by Stefan Kreslin, Last updated 25 October 1998