Being An Encourager
(Series on encouraging – Part 7)
Then Abigail made haste. . .
1 Samuel 25:8.
Abigail – The Peacemaker
We could hardly have a series on “Being an Encourager” without including any of the female encouragers, of which there are many. Most of the Lord's human encouragement came from female believers.
In 1 Samuel 25, we have the biblical story of Abigail. She was the wife of a rich businessman by the name of Nabal, who was known for being harsh and evil. Even his name comes from the Hebrew word that means “foolish” or “senseless.” One day, David sent 10 messengers to Nabal when he noticed him and his shepherds shearing their sheep. David’s messengers explained to Nabal that they had been protecting his herdsman and asked for provisions in exchange because they had run out of food. But Nabal, being the harsh and evil man that he was, not only refused but even screamed at them. Of course, this deeply insulted David, so he prepared 400 of his men to slaughter Nabal and his men. This is where Abigail comes in. When she found out her husband dishonoured David and realised the danger they faced, she had to devise a plan to calm him; Abigail prepared a feast.
According to 1 Samuel 25:18, the Bible says, Then Abigail made haste and took two hundred loaves of bread, two skins of wine, five sheep already dressed, five seahs of roasted grain, one hundred clusters of raisins, and two hundred cakes of figs, and loaded them on donkeys. Abigail, then went out to meet David and his army. When she arrived at the camp of David she dismounted her donkey and fell on her face before David.
The Bible describes Abigail as “intelligent”, “clever” or of good understanding. She was also said to be very beautiful and used her wealth, brains, and anything else that it would take to save her family. This would be a great time to come up with some powerful words to encourage David to change his mind. And after some time that’s exactly what happened. Although the future King of Israel had sworn to seek vengeance against Nabal for being dishonoured, he was deeply moved by Abigail’s words and seen that she was an honest and virtuous woman. David not only changed his mind, but he vowed to protect her family as well. Although Abigail was able to save her family from bloodshed, her husband Nabal died 10 days later (1 Sam 25:37).
1 Samuel 25:1-41
Thank You, loving Father, for all peacemakers the world over. In Jesus name. Amen.