Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Lesson - Nabal and Abigail

VERSES:   1 Samuel 25:2-44

MEMORY VERSE:   1 Samuel 25:3   "...Abigail ... was a woman of good understanding..."

BOOK TO REMEMBER:   Review all 66 books of the Bible.

PRAYER:   May we always strive to keep peace in the family, at school, and everywhere.

SPECIAL SONG:   The Family In God's Plan (see April - Songs We Sing In Bible Class #4 on this blog)

VISUAL AID:   TV Box (see February - Visual Aid #1 on this blog).

  • We need to be, oh, so careful when we are choosing a mate to be married to all of our lives.  In the Old Testament times, they didn't always have a choice when it came to marriage. Occasionally, men and women married because they loved each other, but more times than not, the man and woman married, then they grew to love each other. We need to always remember that God intended for one man to marry one woman and they were to stay married all of their lives. That's what He wants for you and for me.
  • There was a man and his name was Nabal which really was not a very good name because it meant folly or foolish one. We can see in this Bible story that this man was truly a foolish man. Nabal was wicked and harsh and did evil things. The best thing about Nabal was his wife. The Bible says that his wife's name was Abigail and she had good understanding. She was smart and she was beautiful. Yes, Abigail was the best thing about Nabal as we shall see. 
  • Nabal was a very rich man. He had many thousands of sheep and goats. In fact, the story begins as Nabal was shearing his sheep. David was in the same area where Nabal lived and he had heard that Nabal had been shearing his sheep. We need to remember that in Old Testament times, they did not have any fast food or McDonald's or Kentucky Fried Chicken or any hamburger places. The food that people ate was food that they grew or raised themselves. 
  • David and his men were out in the wilderness, trying to stay away from King Saul, when David sent ten of his good men to talk to Nabal. David told the men what to say and they did as they were told. The men greeted Nabal in David's name and then said many nice things to Nabal like how David wished Nabal would live a long time and how he wished for them a peaceful life--things like that. David's men also explained that all the time that David and his men had been in the same wilderness that Nabals' shepherds had been watching over Nabal's sheep that David and his men had given them no trouble. They had not stolen anything or hurt anyone. What David wanted was food from Nabal and asked nicely and said he would take anything that Nabal wanted to give him. 
  • It was not a nice meeting. Nabal got angry and rude and spoke unkindly. He said, "Who is this David? He may be one that has broken away from his master! Shall I give him my bread and my water and my meat that I had prepared for my shearers and give it to someone that I do not know?" So, when David's men turned around and went back to David with the news about what Nabal said, David got a little angry, too. It was the custom back then to help out a neighbor and if anyone asked something of you, you gave it to him. Jesus says that we should be that way today. 
  • David told all of his 600 men to put their sword on. David said that Nabal has returned David's good deeds with Nabal's wicked deeds.David was going to fight Nabal and nothing of his was going to be left standing, even the people would be killed.
  • Meanwhile, one of Nabal's servants went and told Abigail all that had happened and all about Nabal's answer to David. Who was Abigail? That's right! Nabal's wife! The servant said that David's men had been good to them and had not hurt anyone or take anything from them and they had even talked together in the fields. Abigail was very smart! She hurried and gathered up 200 loaves of bread, five sheep that were ready to cook, things to drink ,corn, raisins, figs, and put the food on donkeys. Then, Abigail took off, with her servants going before her. She did not tell her husband, Nabal, and met David and his men on her own. As soon as she got close to David, she hurried, got off her donkey, and bowed her face to the ground before David, falling at his feet.
  • Abigail said to David, "Please let me speak to you and do not even think about this wicked man, Nabal. His name means folly and that is what he is--a foolish man. I did not see any of your young men or talk to them, but please accept this blessing that I have brought with me. Please forgive and do not be offended." She went on to say many nice things about David and, in the end, David accepted her gift. David told her of his plan of killing everyone in Nabal's house, but she had acted wisely and had saved their lives that day. He told her to go home in peace.
  • Abigail went home to find that Nabal was throwing a big party just like he was a king! But Abigail said nothing to Nabal that evening. The next morning when all the wine was out of Nabal, Abigail told him of just how close he came to being killed the day before. The Bible says that when Nabal heard what Abigail was saying, that his heart died within him and he became as stone. Nabal died ten days later.
  • When David heard that Nabal had died, he sent messengers to Abigail, asking her to become David's wife. Abigail said yes. 
"Older Student" Tips:
  • So, even though David was a very good man, and many things that the LORD told him, he did have more than one wife. The Bible says that in Acts 17:30, "And the times of this ignorance, God winked at, but now commanded all men everywhere to repent."
ACTIVITY:  What Abigail Brought To David As A Gift
Materials needed:  smallest brown lunch sack, a plastic baggie, 5" x 7" tan construction paper,9" x 12" white construction paper, 5" x 7" gray construction paper, scraps of yellow, black, and brown paper, marker, scissors.
  1. Hand out tan paper.
  2. Cut large round oval out of tan paper. This bread.
  3. Write "200 loaves of bread" on tan oval.
  4. Hand out gray paper.
  5. Cut out a bottle or container. This is the wine or grape juice.
  6. Write "grape juice" on bottle.
  7. Hand out white paper.
  8. Draw five sheep. 
  9. Write "sheep" and an "x" for the sheep's eye.
  10. Cut sheep out.
  11. Hand out small plastic bag or baggie.
  12. Hand out yellow scraps.
  13. Cut many small yellow circles. This is the parched corn.
  14. Place corn in plastic bag.
  15. Hand out black paper.
  16. Cut many smaller circles. These are raisins.
  17. Place raisins in plastic bag.
  18. Hand out brown scraps.
  19. Cut 2" circles. These are figs.
  20. Write "fig" on brown paper.
  21. Place figs in plastic bag.
  22. Hand out small paper bag.
  23. Write "What Abigail Brought To David As A Gift" and "1 Samuel 25" on brown bag.
  24. Place all items in paper bag.
  25. Fold down edge of brown bag.