Notes: July 23, 2008 – 1 Samuel 25

Meditation Points:

  • Samuel died (verse 1). Did David attend the funeral?  Did Saul attend the funeral?
  • Nabal (1 Samuel 25:3) – quite literally: foolish; and so he acted
  • of the house of Caleb – as “Caleb” means “dog”, some translators have seen this as a reference to Nabal’s dog-like behavior
  • David, it seems, had guarded Nabal’s shepherds without any consideration of remuneration (1 Samuel 25:7); but now he uses that kindness as a bargaining chip (1 Samuel 25:8, 21).
  • Who is David (1 Samuel 25:10)? Has Nabal been living under a rock? Even without CNN all Israel knew about David.
  • David’s (immediate and prayerless) response was to put on his sword and to teach Nabal a lesson (1 Samuel 25:13). Is it ever right to avenge yourself? (Romans 12:19-21)
  • He’s a son of Belial (1 Samuel 25:17), you can’t talk to him. Abigail knew it to be true of her husband. And you probably know some folks like that, too.
  • 200 loaves of bread, available for immediate transport and distribution (1 Samuel 25:18). Was there a Super Wal-Mart nearby? Even if they were small cake-sized loaves (like doughnuts?), that’s more than 16 dozen!
  • Abigail didn’t tell her husband what she intended to do (1 Samuel 25:19). Would you have advised this course of action?
  • Translation or Interpretation?  Do these verses (1 Samuel 25:22,34; 1 Kings 14:10; 1 Kings 16:11; 1 Kings 21:21; 2 Kings 9:8) speak against bad bathroom etiquette? And who is to say that the reference is to human males (as translated/interpreted by almost all English translations other than the KJV) and not to dogs? Given that the Hebrew word means “to pass water” or “to urinate” and NOT “males” or even “men”, I vote for a more accurate translation, even if objectionable to modern sensibilities. Two extremes on this issue are to be seen in this video or in this posthumously published, and relatively unknown (for good reasons), work by Mark Twain.
  • Every would-be politician should heed Abigail’s advice: don’t do anything that you’ll regret after you take office (1 Samuel 25:31).
  • Abigail would tell her husband what she had done; but not while he was drunk (1 Samuel 25:36). Another good example to follow.
  • When Nabal learned the next morning what had transpired between his wife and David, Nabal had a stroke and went into a coma (1 Samuel 25:37). “Nabal, good news. I talked to David and he’s not going to kill you.” Ten days later, the LORD took Nabal’s life (1 Samuel 25:38).
  • And David took Nabal’s widow to be his wife (1 Samuel 25:42). Wait! David was already married, to Saul’s daughter (1 Samuel 25:44). And then he took a third wife, Ahinoam of Jezreel (1 Samuel 25:43). Clearly the man needed counseling.