The Abigail Way

Day 21

“Don’t repay evil for evil. Don’t snap back at those who say unkind things about you. Instead, pray for God’s help for them, for we are to be kind to others, and God will bless us for it.”

– 1 Peter 3:9

God’s instructions for when someone has wronged us are not appealing. Our natural urge is to try to get even. We want payback that seems just and fair, but does that solve anything? In the end, aren’t we just acting like the other person? Today, we are going to look at a story in 1 Samuel 25 to see how Abigail avoided disaster for her household by repaying evil with good, and how she was blessed for it.

In our passage, David was still a fugitive, and he and his men were trying to obtain provisions for themselves during the festive season. David sent down ten of his men from the wilderness to a local man who was very wealthy. The man’s name was Nabal (meaning “fool”), and as the Bible verses reference, he was “stubborn, and ill-mannered.” So, even though David attempted to use kindness to appeal to this man, Nabal did nothing but throw insults at David and his men, repaying good with evil. When the men reported back to David, his response was to tell his men – “get your swords,” even strapping on his own. Luckily, Nabal was married to Abigail, who the Bible says, “Was a very beautiful and intelligent woman.” So when it was reported back to her what Nabal said to David and his men, she did some fast thinking and even faster moving to interrupt was about to happen.

The Bible says she gathered up provisions and food to take to David and his men, and went out to meet him as he was coming to repay evil for evil. When she saw David, she immediately bowed down before him, and began to treat him as the man she hoped he really was. She then begins to speak to David for his potential and future, telling him that God has something great for him, a “lasting dynasty” and because he fights God’s battles, he is a good man and not a wrongdoer. She continues to tell David that his life is so secure that no one can take it, because God is saving him for something specific. And if that wasn’t enough to convince David, she continues to make a point that “when you become king, do you really want this needless act of bloodshed on your conscience?”

In Old Testament law, David had every right to act in vengeance — “eye for eye,” “tooth for tooth” — because he was insulted, but Abigail saw the bigger picture in repaying good for evil, and she convinced David to change his mind, which kept him on a path of a greatness for God’s purpose. In the end, Nabal died and Abigail became David’s wife, and they were blessed!

No story in the Bible is there by accident. Even though we don’t know if David and Abigail lived happily ever after, we saw by Abigail’s actions that she had already followed Jesus’ “Golden Rule” (Matthew 7:12). Acting like Abigail when we are wronged or insulted is the best way to be Christ-like in repaying good for evil. Ultimately, this is what Jesus did for us, showing us grace by doing something we didn’t even deserve. So when you’ve got an opportunity, don’t settle for getting even. Getting even is easy. Do the remarkable, just like Abigail!

Acting like Abigail when we are wronged or insulted is the best way to be Christ-like in repaying good for evil.

Confession for today: “Today, Jesus, when I’ve been placed in a position where I feel I’ve been wronged or insulted, help me to be like Abigail. In doing so, I’m going to act Christ-like in showing kindness and speaking blessings, instead of trying to get even over those who choose to act foolishly against me and what I believe. Help me always repay good for evil, because I know I will be blessed!”

Living for Today,

Mr. Tom

Harvest Church