Abigail’s story echoes in the hearts of all women as an example of true submission and courage, even in the face of danger…
In 1 Samuel 25, a beautiful story emerges, one of submission and deliverance. Abigail is a lesser-known heroine in the Bible, a humble woman who was married to a wealthy scoundrel. Abigail combined her wisdom with her wealth to appear before an approaching enemy to plead for the safety of her husband’s household.
David and 400 of his men were on their way to seek vengeance for Nabal’s foolish response. But one of Nabal’s servants informed Abigail of her husband’s lack of social graces, and what David’s intentions were upon his arrival. Abigail’s response was in stark contrast to that of her husband. She knew who David was and the One that he served. Without hesitation, and without telling her husband, Abigail gathered together food supplies and loaded them on donkeys. Then she headed out to meet the future king of Israel.
When Abigail saw David, without a word, she fell on her face before him, bowing herself to the ground. Falling at his feet, Abigail delivered the most humble, heartfelt plea for David to spare her husband’s household. But her request was not made from a heart of fear, nor was it from a heart of anger toward her husband. Rather, while she admitted that her husband was a man of bad character, she reminded David that his life was in the hands of God. His enemies would be destroyed because of God’s justice, and his own house would endure. She only asked in return that, when God had fulfilled everything He had promised, that David remember her.
Abigail’s humble response turned David’s heart. He saw the error he was about to make. He himself had just recently spared the life of King Saul, who sought to kill David. Yet David had been quick to exterminate the household of a man who had merely insulted him. His life of exile had angered him, and this anger had nearly driven him to seek vengeance against a man who was not the real enemy.
David heeded Abigail’s wise words. He respected her for the great respect she showed her husband’s household, despite his faulty character. He sent her away with a blessing, promising her safe return home and the preservation of the men of Nabal. Abigail’s name is mentioned in Scripture only one more time, as the mother of David’s second-born son. But her story echoes in the hearts of all women as an example of true submission and courage, even in the face of danger. Abigail truly is one of the unsung heroes of the Bible.