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THE FIRST BOOK OF SAMUEL
NABAL BIBLE STUDY
NABAL IN THE BIBLE
Welcome to our Christianity Oasis Daily Bread study program. This is our Nabal Bible study on a man named Nabal in the Bible while sharing the SON-derful Nabal Bible story and how the absolutely awesome Nabal Bible study message affects your be-YOU-tiful Christian walk.
CHECK OUT THE 1 SAMUEL STUDY
FROM THE BEGINNING
NABAL BIBLE STUDY RESEARCH
NABAL IN THE BIBLE STORY
It is always nice to have you back with us at Daily Bread! Let's start out with what happened the last time we shared Daily
Bread together, shall we? Saul was in pursuit of David, and ends up taking
refuge for the night.
He and his three thousand men with him, in the very same
cave as David. Secretly, David sneaks over to Saul without any of the massive
group of soldiers awakening to catch him. David's men believe all of this is a
sign that God has delivered David's enemy right to him.
But instead of harming
Saul, David cuts off part of Saul's clothing and steals away a safe distance
with it, then calls out to Saul, "I coulda gotcha!" Saul relents that David is a
more righteous man than himself and recedes that David will indeed be king one
day. He then asks for David's assurance that he will not slander his name or cut
off his posterity. David humbly agrees, and Saul departs for home, while David
leery to return to his home, returns to hiding.
While David was in
hiding, Samuel died and all of Israel gathered together, and mourned for him,
then buried him at his home in Ramah. Meanwhile, David left Engedi and went to
the wilderness of Paran, which is in the Sinai Peninsula.
NABAL BIBLE STUDY TRUTH
NABAL IN THE BIBLE EVENTS
Now, In Maon (a
city about fifteen miles east/southeast of Engedi) there lived a rich man named
Nabal who owned property in Carmel (which was about a mile north of Maon).
Nabal was a cruel and evil man. His wife Abigail, however, was a smart and
beautiful woman. Nabal had three thousand sheep and a thousand goats and he
took his sheep for shearing to Carmel.
Haven't had a Daily
Bread Stick in a while, have we? Let's talk about sheep shearing! This is the
third time we've heard about sheep shearing in the Bible. The first time in
Genesis 31:19, Jacob fled from
Laban while Laban was away shearing his sheep. In
Genesis 38:13, Judah went up to
his sheepshearers in Timnath after he finished mourning his wife's death. Now we
have Nabal taking his sheep up to Carmel to have them sheared. In each instance,
the sheep owners took the sheep elsewhere to have them sheared. Perhaps the
cities they were taken to were cities of trade, where purchasers of wool, or
markets were. Another thing to remember when you picture what's going on in the
Bible stories that we share, is the era in which things are happening.
If you think about sheep shearing today, you might automatically think of the shearer
holding an electric razor, and you can probably even imagine the sound of it
buzzing as the tufts of wool fall from the blades. But they didn't have such
luxuries back then. It must have taken much longer to shear a sheep with
scissors or knife blades or whatever they used back then. At either rate, it was
a time of celebration as well as sort of a harvest time, because the sheep
owners would naturally sell the wool and make an abundance of money.
Well ... Imagine how much wool one would get from three thousand sheep! So, one might
imagine, just as you would imagine grape harvest time in old Italy, though it
was work because they had to stomp the grapes without the modern methods we have
today, it was a time of great joy and friends were invited to join in the
WHO IS NABAL BIBLE STUDY
NABAL IN THE BIBLE STORY CONTINUES
Now, back when
David and his fellas were hiding from Saul in Engedi, they used to hang out with
Nabal's shepherds around Carmel and there was a good rapport between Nabal's
shepherds and David's men.
Remember now, David
has since left Nabal's neighborhood and is out in the wilderness of Paran, and
he heard that Nabal was shearing sheep.So David sent ten of his guys to Nabal
in Carmel with a message, saying, "Peace to you, your family, and all that you
own. I heard you're sheering sheep. We've always treated your shepherds kindly
Ask your fellas and they'll tell you.So please be generous and allow my men to
find favor in your eyes and give to your servants and your son David whatever
you can since we've come at a time of celebration.
get a better picture of this, everyone in Israel knows the skinny on David and
Saul and what's going on with that situation. And David, along his
travels as a fugitive, gains supporters along the way. Some actually follow him
as soldiers, while others back him in mind and heart and if possible help out
with food and other provisions.
NABAL BIBLE STUDY DISCUSSION
DAVID AND NABAL IN THE BIBLE STORY
David's servants had been helping out Nabal's
men with the sheep and whatnot ... Why not, there's not much to do out in the
wilderness, while you're waiting for Saul's next move, so helping out your
countrymen helps pass the time and gain friends. So, David in return asked Nabal
if he could hook them up with some food and goods in return. When David's men
approached Nabal, they repeated everything David told them to.
response wasn't what David expected, "Who is this David fellow? The son of who?
A lot of servants these days escape their master.So I'm supposed to take my
bread and water and meat that I have for my servants and give it to people I
don't even know?"
Nice guy, that
Nabal, eh? His men were helped by David's men, yet he refuses to return the
favor, and insults David on top of it.Do we ever act like that when someone has
helped us, but when it comes time to reciprocate, it seems like an awful
inconvenience?Maybe we don't have time, or just don't ... Care. Maybe someone has
been a friend to you and in return you gossiped about them or insulted them.
Keep reading to find out what happened next ...
returned to David reporting everything Nabal said.This sort of made the hair on
the back of David's neck stand up and he said to his men, "Get your swords."
And with about 400 men, David went to confront Nabal, while 200 men stayed
behind with the supplies.
NABAL BIBLE STUDY QUESTIONS
NABAL IN THE BIBLE ANSWERS
What's the big
deal, you may be saying to yourself. Certainly Nabal isn't the only guy in
Israel that could help out David and the fellas with a little grub ... Why not
just leave it be and seek out someone more generous.
Well, it's a little easier
to understand if you look at the whole picture.Here's David, the one that God said
would be king, living not only like a pauper, but a fugitive. Also, don't forget
that David wasn't hiding in the wilderness for a couple of days, or just a few
weeks or months, but YEARS. David was the apple of God's eye, but that doesn't
mean that David had assurance each and every day that he would pull through
these wilderness experiences he was having and someday live in a palace and lead
God's people in comfort.
There may have been extremely long periods of time when
David may have wondered if God abandoned him. Just because we get to read the
adventures in David's life one chapter after another, doesn't mean that these
things happened day after day. David and his men could have been out in the
wilderness for months or years when this happened. They could have been
suffering from starvation or who knows what.
So, imagine David in this
situation and when what appears might be a blessing turns out to be an insult,
it doesn't sit too well, no matter how righteous a soul you are."Who is this
David? Son of who?" Nabal may as well have added, "Your mama wears army boots!"
Gettin' the picture now?
NABAL BIBLE STUDY ON ABIGAIL
NABAL IN THE BIBLE STORY BLESSING
It turns out that one young man told Abigail, Nabal's wife, that David sent
messengers to talk to Nabal and he just insulted them.The servant told her,
"The men were very kind to us.We were never hurt or had anything taken from us
as long as we were with them in the fields.
In fact, they protected us day and
night while we were keeping the sheep. There's gotta be something you can do
about this. Soon bad things will happen to Nabal and his family
because he's such a son of a gun that nobody can talk sense to him.
took 200 loaves of bread, two bottles of wine, 5 sheep, roasted grain, 100
clusters of raisins, and 200 fig cakes and piled them on top of donkeys. Now, I
don't know about you, but the way I figure it, David's got six hundred hungry
men ... Am I the only one who thinks they might run outta wine?
Okay, let's give Abby a break, not only was she in a hurry, but since Nabal was probably entertaining
his friends and family at the sheep shearing celebration, he probably didn't
leave enough wine for six hundred soldiers sitting in the pantry, right? Okay
then. Now, Abigail told her servants, "Go ahead of me. I'll follow shortly."But
she didn't tell her husband what she was doing.
Do you sense that
the Lord is about to use Abigail to remind David that he's acting on his own
will without asking God's counsel first? Though Abigail may not agree with how
her husband responded, she wanted there to be peace.But David swore that by
morning he would destroy Nabal's entire family.
NABAL BIBLE STUDY ON ABIGAIL
NABAL IN THE BIBLE STORY BLESSING
follows the caravan of food and drink that she packed up and meets David
and his men. She jumps down off her mule, bows to David and begs him not to pay
any attention to what Nabal said, since he's a man that lives up to his name.
(The name Nabal means ‘foolish'.And don't forget that back in those days, the
meaning of your name was a big deal.
It was supposed to identify what you would
become or something about the circumstances that were present around the time of
your birth.) She apologizes that she didn't speak to David's men before Nabal
because she certainly would have helped them.
She then not only presents the
gift of food that she brought, but in very eloquent words assures David of the
calling that God has given him and reminds him that the Lord is in control of
everything. So, David sees the foolishness in letting Nabal irritate him to the
point of doing something rash, and he gives it to God.
David says to
Abigail, "Blessed be the Lord God that sent you to me today.
Your advice is blessed, as you are blessed. You kept me from avenging myself
without asking the Lord. If you hadn't come quickly to meet me, I would've
destroyed the house of Nabal, and even you would have never seen another day.
NABAL BIBLE STUDY ON LOVE
NABAL IN THE BIBLE STORY OF HOPE
David accepts all
the provisions that Abigail brought for them and says, "You can go home without
worry. I believe what you've said and I won't do your family any harm."
home to find Nabal having a huge feast. He was drunk and very content, so she
waited to speak to him until the morning. The next morning, after Nabal had
sobered up, Abigail told him everything that had happened and his heart became
like a stone. Ten days later, Nabal died.
When David heard
what had happened, he thanked the Lord for avenging him of Nabal while at the
same time, keeping his hands clean.
You reap what you
Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that
shall he also reap.
This story may
raise the question, what made Nabal so evil?
NABAL BIBLE STUDY ON FAITH
NABAL IN THE BIBLE STORY BLESSING
The story doesn't
say. It could have been greed. It could have been selfishness. It could have
been jealousy. Who knows ... The Lord could have created Nabal for the sole
purpose of testing David's resolve. No matter what, it sends a wake up call to
those that may KNOW they have evil and bitterness in their heart that they
refuse to get rid of.
One little seed of bitterness can grow into something huge
... And that "something" ended up KILLING Nabal. Nabal was evil to everyone, and
died because of it. Rid of your life and your heart of anything you know may be
poison for you. Remember, we reap what we sow.
went to Carmel to take Abigail to be his wife and she bowed down and said, "Let
your handmaid be a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my lord."
She quickly got on
a mule with five of her maids following her, followed David's messengers back
and became his wife. David also took Ahinoam of Jezreel as his wife.
NABAL BIBLE STUDY SUMMARY
NABAL IN THE BIBLE STORY CONCLUSION
But Saul had given
Michal, his daughter, (and David's wife) to another man named Paltiel. What
does one say about that?Is that the same Saul that recently admitted that David
will indeed be king in his stead one day and begged him to be merciful to his
huh? Hurry back now! More exciting stories in the life of David to come, right
here at Daily Bread!
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