Ellen G. White Writings

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Manuscript Releases, vol. 21 [Nos. 1501-1598], Page 214

gathered together such stores as she thought best to conciliate the wrath of David, for she knew he was determined to avenge himself for the insult he had received. She knew also that Nabal was so set and determined in his way that he would never consent to receive her counsel or act upon her plan. She herself brought to David the things that Nabal had refused to give, and bound herself to David's cause for his own good. Abigail's course in this matter was one that God approved, and the circumstance revealed in her a noble spirit and character.

In the most taunting manner Nabal had sent the insulting message to David, accusing him of being a runaway slave. Abigail met David with respect, showing him honor and deference, and pleaded her cause eloquently and successfully. While not excusing her husband's insolence, she still pleaded for his life. She also revealed the fact that she was not only a discreet woman, but a godly woman, acquainted with the works and ways of God in David. She stated her firm faith in the fact that David was the anointed of the Lord and that his life was in her hands with God, but she did not hide the humiliating evidence that Nabal was, as his name indicated, a man of folly, who treated all with the same insolent selfishness with which he had treated David.

Abigail's manner and conciliatory gifts softened the spirit of David. He declared that it had been his intention to destroy Nabal and his household, but that now he would refrain from vengeance, for he believed that she had been sent by the Lord to prevent him from doing so great an evil. He promised that her request should be ever remembered, even when he should sit as ruler over Israel, and he would never seek retaliation for the insult of Nabal.

Although Nabal had refused the needy company of David and his men, yet that very night he made an extravagant feast for himself and his riotous friends, and indulged in eating and drinking till he sunk in drunken stupor. The next day after the effects of his drunken debauch had somewhat passed away, his wife told him of how near he had been to death, and of how the calamity had been averted. As he listened, he realized what a course of evil would have resulted but for Abigail's discretion, and terror filled his heart. Palsied with horror, he sat down and never recovered from the shock.

From this history, we can see that there are circumstances under which it is proper for a woman to act promptly and independently, moving with decision in the way she knows to be the way of the Lord. The wife is to stand by the side of the husband as his equal, sharing all the responsibilities

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