Monday, September 29, 2014

The wisdom of Abigail

Abigail Offering Bread to David, PD Art-Old, Louis de Boullogne (1654–1733), via Wikimedia Commons

I love Abigail.

The story of Abigail is found in 1 Samuel 25, and I've listened to this chapter of the Bible over and over.

Here are a few things I noticed about Abigail:

-Abigail is the sort of person other people confide in. When there's trouble in her household, one of her servants lets her know what was going on. She was trustworthy, and that saved her. (Whereas Nabal, her husband, was "such a son of Belial, that one cannot speak to him!")

-Abigail knew what to do in a crisis

-Abigail lived the sort of life that resulted to her being ready for a crisis.

-Abigail was wise about who she consulted and who she didn't. (She didn't tell Nabal what had happened till things were over.)

-Abigail was ready to humble herself when the circumstances required it.

-Abigail was ready to take consequences upon herself that weren't even her fault, for the sake of those who were in her charge. (And this is love . . .)

-Abigail was well-spoken and knew how to persuade with her words. (Look how clever she is when she talks to David - she even hints at David's famous victory against Goliath! Talk about appropriately flattering!)

-Abigail, moreover, knew how to persuade David specifically. When she faced David's wrath, she didn't give a general argument, but an argument tailored specifically to David. She referenced the LORD's promises. She spoke to David's future, and the man he wanted to be, and what David knew to be true of the LORD (that he would avenge on his beloved's behalf). She hinted at regrets David might have if he continued on his present course of action.
This was not a woman flailing about, hoping to catch on a winning argument. She was specific and shrewd in the words she chose to use.

-And moreover, Abigail asked for something for herself - in addition to just the solution of the present problem.

-Despite her humility, Abigail knew her own worth. When David eventually demanded her as a wife, Abigail went to David mounted, and with a retinue. She went as a woman of means and reputation. Because that was who she really was.

On David:
Also, just to point it out, in this chapter, that it's evident David:

1) wanted justice, but,

2) was ready to hear a reason for mercy.

I can't help but appreciate that, too.

Honestly, so much has been said about the Proverbs 31 woman that it's hard to jump into the fray. But, for my money, if you want to see a woman who was, in real life, virtuous, just, and shrewd, it's hard to find a better example than Abigail.

Peace of Christ to you,
Jessica Snell

1 comment:

Bonni said...

Indeed! Instead of moping about how "unfair" the situation was, she accepted God's role for her in this season ... and saved the day.