The Fool and the Foolish

1 Samuel 25

 God had a plan for David to become King of Israel and had David anointed as King by Samuel but before David could assume the position he needed to be trained for the position.  This has been a long process and from a worldly point of view it would be easy to lose sight of God’s promise when it is clouded by ever increasing responsibilities and difficult circumstances.

David, running from King Saul, has seen how evil the enemy can be and even ends up running to another enemy. 1 Samuel 21&22

 He is also picking up responsibility along the way with people and family coming to him as he runs from Saul. How does he even feed this many people?  Obviously he can’t get away from the enemy as quickly as before and now he is responsible for their welfare. While God is developing David’s leadership skills all he is seeing are the problems that are with him day after day.  David tries to do the right thing by protecting Nabal’s flocks but when David sends his men to ask for food they are rejected, David has had enough and becomes angry.

 Paul writes in Ephesians 4:26&27, “In your anger do not sin, do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.  Do not give the devil a foothold” NIV

In this chapter we see David doing just the opposite of what Paul wrote.

It is interesting that Paul takes this lesson from a Psalm of David, Psalm 4:4.  In this verse David instructs us to search our hearts when we are lying in bed fuming over the day’s events, and then offer right sacrifices.  In other words get to the truth and deal with the situation from the truth not the emotion of anger, but that is not what David does in this situation. Instead David was listening to the ways of the world and lost sight of God’s plan for him because the devil had clouded it with the circumstances and pressures he was facing.  In short, the devil had isolated him and got him on the wrong path.  Secondly, instead of offering right sacrifices, David was dwelling on the wrong he felt he had suffered. (vs. 21)  Just a little farther down that road David was about to stumble over the stumbling block the devil had put in David’s path of life. Up to this point David was not watching where he was going nor paying attention to the ramifications of the action he was about to take. However, God was also working, and He sent a wise woman. 

 Abigail, Nabal’s wife,  meets David with food but also with wisdom.  She reminds David of God’s plan that he would one day be king of Israel.  She also lets him know that the devil’s isolation tactic is a lie.  She knows what he is going through presently but to act on it as he was planning would have real consequences down the road of life.  With this revelation David can now sacrifice his planned action and let God deal with Nabal, which God does in just a few days.

 We need to be careful that we keep in view God’s plan for us.  We also need to be careful that we do not dwell on the negative events we face, but deal with them according to God’s ways and not the way the devil has trained the world to deal with them.  Also, we need to never let the devil isolate us in our thinking for when we are isolated we can be sure he is planning to have a feast.

As David journeys on his path to kingship there will be more intense trials along the way but God is using them for good and not for harm. (See Romans 5:1-5) The devil would have him believe otherwise.

For David (and us) it all comes down to who one listens to and believes.

 Just a side note.  We will learn in Proverbs that there are three Hebrew words translated “fool”. The first one describes the foolishness that comes from ignorance or youth.The second one describes one who has rejected God and his ways.  I call this pre-Nabal because when God is rejected time and time again there is a hardness that sets in.  When the heart is hard against God and everyone else, this foolishness is Nabal in the Hebrew, the third word for fool.  Verse 17 describes Nabal as a man so wicked no one could talk to him.  David acted foolishly but when Abigail spoke to him, he listened.  Still, he was one decision away from becoming like Nabal and throwing it all away.

 May God grant us ears to hear.

Pastor Dave