THIS IS A STORY ABOUT DAVID BEING SAVED FROM HIMSELF BY A VERY GOOD AND RIGHTEOUS WOMAN NAMED ABIGAIL (WHO DID THE 3 RULES)! IT’S INTERESTING AND SIGNIFICANT HOW REGULARLY THE SCRIPTURE ELEVATES WOMEN BECAUSE IN TYPICAL EASTERN/ORIENTAL SOCIETY WOMEN WERE ONLY A LITTLE MORE VALUABLE THAN CATTLE! BUT YAHUAH, THE ALAHIM OF YISHARAL WOULDN'T TOLERATE SUCH ATTITUDES AMONGST HIS PEOPLE.
SAM HAS JUST DIED AND WITH HIS PASSING ALL HOPE FOR PEACE BETWEEN DAVID AND SAUL HAS GONE WITH HIM. SAMUEL BRIDGED THE DIVIDE OF LOYALTIES AMONG THE VARIOUS TRIBAL COALITIONS. THERE WAS NO OTHER MAN SINCE JOSHUA’S DEATH WHO HELD THE RESPECT OF ALL 12 TRIBES AND WHOSE AUTHORITY WAS HONORED BY ALL YISHARAL. EVEN SAUL FEARED HIM.
BREAK THROUGH (SAM.25)
So Samuel died, and people from all over Yisharal gathered to mourn for him when he was buried at his home in Ramah. FAMILY TOMBS WERE OFTEN UNDERNEATH THE HOUSE OR IN THE COURTYARD OF THE HOME. Meanwhile, David moved his camp to the Paran Desert, for EnGedi was too easily within reach of King Saul.
And there was a rough, mean man from the clan of Caleb, named Nabal (WILT, FOLLY). He was very rich, lived in Maon and owned 3000 sheep and 1000 goats which he kept at Carmel. And he had a wife named Abigail (MY FATHER IS STRENGTH) who was a righteous, sensible and an extremely beautiful woman. BASED ON THEIR NAMES (POSSIBLY GIVEN AT A LATER DATE) AND THEIR CHARACTERS WE SEE THAT NABAL AND ABIGAIL ARE POLAR OPPOSITES.
One day, Nabal was in Carmel, having his servants cut the wool from his sheep, and David was in the desert when he heard about it. So he sent ten men to Carmel with this message for Nabal: “I hope that you and your family are healthy and that all’s going well for you. I’ve heard that you are cutting the wool from your sheep. When your shepherds were with us in Carmel, we didn’t harm them, and nothing was ever stolen from them. Ask your shepherds, and they’ll back-up what I’m saying as truth. My servants are your servants, and you are like a father to me. This time of sheep-shearing is for celebrating as well as working, so please be kind and share some of your food with us". THIS FESTIVAL IS THE SHEPHERD’S EQUIVALENT OF THE HARVEST AND THRESHING SEASON, AND IT WAS A “FESTIVE SEASON” (A GOOD DAY). THIS WASN’T A MOEDIM FEAST DAY (ONE OF THE 7 SCRIPTURAL FESTIVALS), BUT IT WAS A DAY OF JOY AND PARTYING AND DRINKING WINE THAT CELEBRATED THE “HARVEST” OF WOOL. AND DAVID’S 10 MEN WERE ESSENTIALLY UNWELCOME PARTY CRASHERS.
CONTAINED WITHIN DAVID'S MESSAGE IS A REQUEST FOR SUPPLIES AS A GIFT FOR DAVID AND HIS SMALL COMMUNITY. NABAL WAS BEING STRONG-ARMED (DESPITE ALL THE COURTEOUS SOUNDING FLATTERY) AND HE KNEW IT, AND HE DIDN’T LIKE IT. HE WAS A POWERFUL MAN OF AN INFLUENTIAL CLAN AND REFUSED TO BE TREATED IN SUCH A MANNER.
And David’s men went to Nabal and gave him his message, then waited for Nabal’s answer: “Who the hell does this David think he is? That blasted son of Jesse is just one more slave on the run from his master, and there are way too many of them these days. What makes you boys think I would take my bread, my water, and the meat that I’ve had cooked for my own shearers and give it to you? Besides, how do I even know that David sent you?
So the men returned to their camp and told David everything Nabal had said. “THAT'S IT!! EVERYBODY GET YOUR SWORDS NOW!” David ordered. So they all strapped on their swords and 200 men stayed behind to guard the camp, but the other 400 followed David.
Meanwhile, one of Nabal’s servants told Abigail, “David’s men were often nearby while we were taking care of the sheep in the fields. They were very good to us, they never hurt us, and nothing was ever stolen from us while they were nearby. With them around day or night, we were as safe as we would have been inside a walled city. Dave’s just sent some messengers from the desert to wish our master well, but he shouted insults at them. He’s a brutish son of a bitch who won’t listen to anyone! (HEBREW - `SON OF BELIYAL’ - THE GREATEST INSULT GIVEN) Isn’t there something you can do? Please think of something! Or else our master and his family and everyone who works for him are all doomed.DAVID IS A COMPLEX MAN, WHICH IS A NICE WAY OF SAYING THAT AS UPRIGHT AND YAHUAH-FEARING (AND DETERMINED TO BE OBEDIENT AS HE IS), HE CAN ALSO BE PROUD, SELF-PROMOTING AND TENDS TO OVERREACT AND AT TIMES LET HIS VOLCANIC ANGER AND PASSIONS OVERWHELM EVEN HIS BEST INTENTIONS.
SO NOW WE SEE DAVID BEING CONSUMED BY BLIND RAGE, THE RESULT OF TAKING NABAL’S INSULT PERSONALLY. AND HE’S ABOUT TO COMMIT BLOOD GUILT,A TERRIBLE THING THAT COULD EASILY HAVE DESTROYED HIS REPUTATION AND HIS WITNESS. BUT EVEN MORE IT PROBABLY WOULD HAVE DISQUALIFIED HIM FROM BEING YAHUAH’S ANOINTED KING, WHICH WOULD HAVE ALTERED HISTORY. THE TRUTH IS THAT NABAL HAD COMMITTED NO VIOLATION OF TURAH LAWS UNLESS WE COUNTED IT AS NOT LOVING HIS NEIGHBOUR AS HIMSELF.
NOTHING MORE HAD HAPPENED THAN DAVID FIGURED HE WAS OWED SOMETHING AND NABAL DISAGREED. ALL THAT HAD COME BETWEEN DAVID AND NABAL WERE WORDS. NO HARM WAS DONE, NO PROPERTY STOLEN. BUT FOR THIS, DAVID WAS READY, IN HIS VIOLENT ANGER, TO COMMIT MURDER. IT IS SO IRONIC THAT THIS STORY WOULD APPEAR IMMEDIATELY AFTER WE FIND DAVID WITH A SEEMINGLY JUSTIFIABLE (IF NOT COMPELLING) REASON TO KILL A MAN (SAUL) WHILE HE WAS ON THE TOILET, BECAUSE THIS MAN WAS INTENT ON KILLING DAVID. IF EVER THERE WAS A CASE FOR SELF-DEFENCE THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN IT. BUT IN PAYING ATTENTION TO THE SPIRIT OF YAHUAH, AND REFUSING TO TAKE THE ADVICE OF HIS MEN, DAVID SPARED THE LIFE OF KING SAUL.
BUT HERE THOUGH, DAVID WAS IN AN OUT OF CONTROL RAGE AND READY TO KILL ANYONE IN HIS PATH FOR NO OTHER REASON THAN A MAN HAD INSULTED HIM. SO NOW WE’RE GOING TO SEE HOW THE ALL-MERCIFUL YAHUAH STOPPED THIS ATROCITY, NOT SO MUCH FOR THE SAKE OF THOSE WHO MIGHT DIE BUT FOR DAVID’S SAKE AND THE SAKE OF HIS REDEMPTIVE PLAN.
David was on the war path, Nabal had signed his own death warrant and his wife knew it. But Abigail didn’t want to see lots of innocent people die over some food and heated words, so (being wise and virtuous) she set out to stop it, quickly grabbing 200 loaves of bread, 2 large clay jars of wine, the meat from 5 sheep, a large sack of roasted grain, 100 handfuls of raisins, and 200 handfuls of dried figs. She loaded all the food on donkeys and told her servants, “Take this on ahead, and I’ll catch up with you.”
And she didn’t tell her husband Nabal what she was doing. And just as Abigail was riding her donkey on the path that led around the hillside, suddenly (at Yahuah’s hand) she met David and his men heading straight at her. David had just been saying, “How stupid was I, wasting my bloody time guarding Nabal’s things in the desert and keeping them from being stolen! I was good to him dammit, and now he pays me back with insults. I swear that by morning, there won’t be anyone alive from his family or his servants who piss against the wall (ie MALES). And let Alahim punish me if I don’t do it!”
H8366 - Urination ... 'doing a wee wee all the way home' :-)
YES THIS IS IN THE REAL TEXT, THE SCRIPTURE DOESN’T MINCE WORDS; AND THE REALITY IS THAT SO MUCH OF WHAT WE READ TODAY IN OUR ENGLISH TRANSLATIONS HAS BEEN WATERED DOWN AND MADE CONSIDERABLY MORE GENTEEL (AND OFTEN LESS MEMORABLE AND IMPACTFUL) THAN WHAT THE WORDS ACTUALLY SAY. DAVID’S THOUGHTS ARE BEING ACCURATELY RECORDED FOR US AND THEY ARE NOT ADMIRABLE. THIS PREDECESSOR TO MESSIAH, DAVID, IS A STRANGE MIXTURE OF PASSIVE SHEPHERD AND FEROCIOUS WARRIOR; A MIX THAT SEEMS UTTERLY INCOMPATIBLE, ALMOST SCHIZOPHRENIC. DAVID IS ESSENTIALLY MUTTERING TO HIMSELF AS HE’S TRAVELING, COMPLAINING ABOUT HOW HE AND HIS MEN HAVE BEEN INSULTED AND CHEATED; AND HE’S BOILING THIS ALL OVER IN HIS MIND, REPLAYING HIS ANGER AGAIN AND AGAIN.
And Abigail (a rich aristocrat) quickly got off her donkey and bowed down in front of David, and even though she was the attractive and intelligent wife of a wealthy and powerful man, her station in life was of little importance to her at the moment, for her desperate hope was to stop an atrocity before it happened, to save her family and her clan, even if it meant personal humiliation and accepting all blame. She was taking a great risk as a woman and said, “Sir, please let me explain! Don’t pay any attention to my good-for-nothing husband, for Nabal is his name, and folly is his game! (LITERALLY) I didn’t see the men you sent, but please take this gift of food for you and your men. Yahuah has kept you from taking revenge and from killing innocent people, so I hope your enemies and anyone else who wants to harm you will end up just like Nabal. I swear this by the living Yahuah and by your life. Please forgive me if I talk too much".
ABIGAIL IS NOT ASKING FORGIVENESS FOR HER HUSBAND'S BEHAVIOUR BUT FOR HERSELF, FOR IF WE PUT OURSELVES INTO THE MIDDLE-EASTERN MINDSET WE SEE THAT WE HAVE A WOMAN SPEAKING TO A MAN WHO ISN'T HER HUSBAND; A MAN WHO IS WELL KNOWN AND TO A DEGREE FEARED. SHE HAS DARED TO APPROACH THE MAN (EVEN TO SEEK HIM OUT) WHEN CUSTOM IS THAT A MAN MUST APPROACH THE WOMAN IF THERE IS TO BE ANY CONVERSATION. SHE IS BOLDLY INTERVENING IN HER HUSBAND’S AFFAIRS AND IT COULD EASILY HAVE BEEN DAVID’S DECISION TO TREAT HER VERY BADLY FOR DARING TO STAND BETWEEN TWO MEN IN A CONFLICT. IN FACT SHE IS COMING DANGEROUSLY CLOSE TO (IF NOT STEPPING OVER THE LINE OF) AN OBSCURE TURAH LAW THAT WE LOOKED INTO A VERY LONG TIME AGO:
"If two men are fighting, and the wife of one man tries to rescue her husband by grabbing the other man’s nut-sack (GENITALS) you must cut off her hand, no mercy, no questions asked!".(DEUT 25)
OBVIOUSLY ABIGAIL IS NOT PHYSICALLY TUSSLING WITH DAVID, HOWEVER THE UNDERLYING PRINCIPLE OF DEUT 25 STANDS; A WOMAN IS NOT TO INTERVENE IN AN OTHERWISE FAIR-FIGHT BETWEEN HER HUSBAND AND ANOTHER MAN. THIS COULD HAVE TAKEN A NUMBER OF DIFFERENT COURSES FOR ABIGAIL, MOST OF THEM BAD, AND THAT'S WHY WE SEE HER PLEADING WITH DAVID TO BE FORGIVING TOWARDS HER FOR INTERVENING IN THIS MATTER.
"Yahuah will always protect you and your family, because you fight for Him. I hope that you won’t ever do anything evil as long as you live, then Yahuah your Alahim will keep your spirit safe in the `bundle of the living’ when your enemies try to kill you. But He will snatch away their lives quicker than you can throw a rock from a sling. Yahuah has promised to do many good things for you, even to make you the ruler of Yisharal. Yahuah will keep His promises to you, and now your conscience will be clear, because you won’t be guilty of taking revenge and killing innocent people. When Yahuah does all those good things for you, please remember me.
Abigail is saying that David’s life will be bound up into this "bundle of life" and here the word referring to David’s life is nephesh which doesn’t just mean life, but rather LIFE-ESSENCE (spirit). So David’s life essence will be bound up in this “bundle of life”.
But “bundle of life” is actually an ancient Hebrew expression, so what did it mean to people of that day to “be bound into the bundle of life”? The Hebrew expression is "bisror ha'hayyim" and it is indeed speaking of some kind of bundle and of life but THE BUNDLE IS REFERRING NOT TO A BAG OR TO A PACKAGE BUT RATHER TO A DOCUMENT! In the days of David, a document for the Hebrews was usually a Scroll or even better, an animal skin with words written on and then rolled up and tied with a leather string to form a bundle. Thus a better and more apt translation is DOCUMENT OF LIFEorDOCUMENT OF THE LIVING. So the 'bundle of life' is some kind of divine document where those whom Yahuah chooses, have their names place into it, and so their life essences, their spirits, are tucked safely away forever. Sound familiar? Obviously this is a very early way of the Early Texts speaking of the LAMB'S BOOK OF LIFE.
REV 20:12 "And I saw the dead, both great and small, standing in front of the throne. Books were opened; and another book was opened, the Book of Life; and the dead were judged from what was written in the books, according to what they had done".
The dead were written in the Book of Life according to what? According to “what they had done" (HOW THEY'D BEHAVED WHILE IN THEIR FLESH). This matches exactly what Abigail is telling David, that by his action of forgiving the insult, stopping the judging, changing his mind, STOP TAKING NEBAL'S BEHAVIOUR PERSONALLY AND LET HIM HAVE IT (vengeance is Mine)- STOP EXCUSING HIS OWN CHILDISH RETALIATION ie murder and blood-guilt . . . then he would be written into the Book of Life. So as we have discovered, the many principles (such as eternal life and the Book of Life) that we find in the Latter Texts (gospels/epistles) are but progressive developments of principles already established (even if only vaguely) in the Early Writings of Moses and the Prophets ... and Abigail is definately speaking prophetically here! ... And doing the 3 Rules!
THE 3 RULES PRODUCE A BEHAVIOUR THAT WILL GRANT US ACCESS INTO DELIVERANCE, FOR WHILE YAHUSHA'S BLOOD CAN ONLY LEGALLY START THAT PROCESS, OUR ACTIVATION OF THE SEED HE'S PLANTED IN US, IS THE MATURITY, THE TRANSFORMATION AND THE `CLOTHED IN ESTEEM' (THE OIL) THAT WILL BE REQUIRED UPON ENTRY TO THE WEDDING FEAST! AND WITHOUT THIS DAILY EXPERIENCE BEHAVING TURAH, WE WILL BE FOUND NAKED, UNPREPARED AND UNWISE.
And David told her, “I praise Yahuah the Alahim of Yisharal! He must have sent you to meet me today. And you should also be praised. Your good sense kept me from taking revenge and killing innocent people. If you hadn’t come to meet me so quickly, every man and boy in Nabal’s family and in his servants' families would have been killed by morning. I swear by the living Yahuah, Alahim of Yisharal who protected you that this is the truth".
So David (responding to Abigail in what can only be described as a startling act of humility for a Middle-Eastern man towards a woman) agreed that Abigail is entirely correct and he was dead-wrong, and he forgave her bold intervention, giving her compliments and blessings and admits that she is a follower of Yahuah.
AND HAD SHE NOT BROKEN-THROUGH AND BEEN OBEDIENT TO YAHUAH; INSTEAD OF ALLOWING HER FEARS TO TAKE OVER AND SHRINK FROM HER DIVINE ASSIGNMENT, NOT ONLY WOULD HER FAMILY BE GONE BUT DAVID WOULD HAVE BECOME STOOPED IN BLOOD GUILT. DAVID RECOGNISES THAT AS MUCH AS SHE SAVED HER FAMILY SHE HAS SAVED HIM TOO. THIS IS A CHARACTERISTIC OF DAVID THAT PLEASES YAHUAH. WHEN HE'S DONE WRONG, OR IS CONTEMPLATING WRONG, AND IS CONFRONTED WITH IT HE IS HUMBLE AND ADMITS HIS GUILT BEFORE YAHUAH. HE ACKNOWLEDGES THAT EVEN ABOVE THOSE HE HAS HARMED, IT IS YAHUAH WHO HE HAS SINNED AGAINST. A HUMBLE HEART IS THE KEY TO TRUE REPENTANCE.AFTERWARDS HE REPENTED!
David accepted the food Abigail had brought. “Don’t worry dear,” he said, “You can go home now and I’ll do what you've asked.”
And Abigail went back home and found Nabal throwing a huge party fit for a king. He was off his face `drunk as a skunk' and feeling very good, so she didn’t tell him anything that night. But when he sobered up the next morning, Abigail told him everything that had happened between her and David. And Nabal had a heart attack, and fell back in the bed as still as a stone. Then ten days later, Yahuah took his life. And when David heard that Nabal had died he said, “O' praise Yahuah! He's judged Nabal guilty for insulting me. Yahuah kept me from doing something terribly wrong, and made sure that Nabal only hurt himself with his own evil behaviour.”
And Nabal’s widow Abigail was still at Carmel, so David sent messengers to ask her if she would marry him. And she bowed down and said, “I would willingly be David’s slave and wash his servant's feet.”
THESE WORDS BY ABIGAIL ARE PROFOUND, ESPECIALLY WHEN WE INCORPORATE THE CONCEPT THAT DAVID IS A TYPE AND SHADOW OF MESSIAH. NOTE THAT ABIGAIL SPEAKS NOT OF HER WASHING DAVID’S FEET, BUT RATHER THE FEET OF DAVID’S FOLLOWERS, DAVID’S SERVANTS. AND SINCE SHE HAS ACCEPTED DAVID’S OFFER OF MARRIAGE IN FRONT OF WITNESSES, SHE IS NOW LEGALLY BETROTHED. SHE IS DAVID’S WIFE, THE MASTER’S WIFE, WITH ONLY THE ACT OF CONSUMMATION LEFT TO FINALISE THE MARRIAGE. AND YET SHE SPEAKS OF HERSELF AS A SERVANT WHO WANTS TO WASH THE FEET OF HER HUSBAND’S SERVANTS! DOES THIS HAVE A FAMILIAR RING TO IT? WHAT WORDS OF PROPHESY IS THIS? DAVID WAS A WISE MAN TO IMMEDIATELY GO AFTER SUCH A WOMAN AFTER SHE BECAME A WIDOW AT YAHUAH’S HAND.
So Abigail quickly got ready and went back with David’s messengers. She rode on her donkey, while five of her servant women walked alongside. And she and David were married as soon as she arrived. David had earlier married Ahinoam from the town of Jezreel, so both she and Abigail were now David’s wives. Meanwhile, in his bitterness, Saul had arranged for Michal (David’s first wife) to marry Palti the son of Laish, who came from the town of Gallim. WHAT A GREAT INSULT TO HIS HONOR AND MANHOOD, GIVING DAVID'S WIFE TO SOMEONE ELSE !
BREAK-THROUGH IMPLIES AN UNLEASHING OF POWER, WHICH CAN EITHER BLESS THE RIGHTEOUS OR CURSE AND DESTROY THE UNCLEAN - IT IS CONNECTING TO YAHUSHA'S INVISIBLE REALM, BUT HE HAS A FEW REQUIREMENTS FIRST.
YAHUSHA IS VERY PRACTICAL and often uses the humblest of people (like Abigail) to break through and achieve His purposes, in this case, stopping a mass war, blood-guilt and the moral pollution of His chosen King David, who had thrown aside his identify and royal status in the Master, just to be `pissy' and offended at a big boofhead with no idea how to behave.
David took the situation with Nabal PERSONALLY and it wounded him, stripping him of sanity, clarity of thought and wisdom of direction. Then instead of remembering who he is and letting it go (LETTING HIM HAVE IT) he was ranting and raving about Nabal, ready to rip him to shreds and everyone he knew too. And he had no problem rationally EXCUSING such behaviour, even though he was the future nagid `Prince in Waiting'...
SATAN AND HIS MINIONS OPERATE IN THE INVISIBLE REALM OF EMOTIONS, STRIPPING US OF OUR DIVINE GARMENTS OF ESTEEM BY GETTING US ALL FIRED UP AND `PISSY' SO WE CAN'T `ENTER BOLDLY' THROUGH OUR PORTALS AND CONNECT WITH YAHUSHA!! SEE HOW CLEVER HE IS!! AND WE FALL FOR IT EVERY TIME!! SO STUPID!!
See how Abigail had a BREAK-THROUGH and saved the day by doing The 3 Rules? She was practical, she heard Yahuah's voice and obediently followed. She didn't allow her lower status as a woman in society of that era (but not in Yahuah's mind) to dissuade her. She didn't take her husband's behaviour personally or make excuses for him, she acted quickly and (by bowing down humbly before David and letting him have it), she managed to avert a national crisis!
WE WILL HAVE NO TRUE BREAK-THROUGH OR VICTORY WITHOUT PRACTICING THE 3 RULES, BECAUSE IN THEM WE LEARN THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT, MAKING US BLAMELESS BEFORE ANY LAWS!