Bible Society of South Africa

A good spouse is a gift from God! – 16 July 2021

By Ewald Schmidt

Bible text(s)

18Abigail quickly collected 200 loaves of bread, two leather bags full of wine, five roasted sheep, seventeen kilogrammes of roasted grain, a hundred bunches of raisins, and 200 cakes of dried figs, and loaded them on donkeys.

1 Samuel 25:18GNBOpen in Bible reader

David lived in ancient times, where kings could marry more than one wife. The romance we read about in 1 Samuel 25 is a bit unusual. David and his band of merry men were living in the wilderness, fleeing from King Saul. They were extremely dependent on the help of the local population to sustain them and keep them going on their quest. We read of a rich man, Nabal, who lived in Maon. David and his men approached Nabal’s workers for a donation of food. But contrary to the customs of hospitality in those times, Nabal refused to help them. It might sound like a difficult task, feeding 400 men. Nabal could easily afford it, but he was surly and mean. David ordered his men to go fetch their swords. Big trouble was brewing.

But Nabal’s beautiful wife, Abigail, came to the rescue. Without her husband’s knowledge, she gathered the provisions needed, and took it to David in person. She asked for his forgiveness, and reminded him that Nabal’s name meant “fool”, and his ways were foolish. Abigail saved her family with her intervention. That evening, her husband held an extravagant feast, and he drank way too much. When he heard that Abigail had provided the supplies David had needed, he had a stroke and died 10 days later. David knew a good woman when he saw one, and he married Abigail.

I am so grateful that women are not men’s property anymore, like in David’s time. Each woman should be seen as a unique and special person, and be treated as such. Abigail is pictured as a strong woman, one to be held in high esteem. She was intelligent, and kept her cool in a time of crisis. She could plan and execute to reach her goals. It would be an honour to walk alongside such a woman, in any given century.

You are blessed if you have a spouse like Abigail in your life. It is so important to love and cherish them for who they are, without trying to put them in a box. A thought from Abigail’s point of view: be uniquely you without apology. The right person will love and appreciate you for who you are. Don’t marry a fool!

Prayer: Lord, we live in a time where there are such high expectations to which we are held. We have such preconceived ideas about what a husband or a wife should look like, and how they should act. Help me to be myself in my relationships. And if I have a special someone in my life, help me to treasure him/her for whom you have made him/her to be. Amen

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