David and Nabal
25 Now Samuel died, and all Israel assembled and mourned for him; and they buried him at his home in Ramah. Then David moved down into the Desert of Paran.
2 A certain man in Maon, who had property there at Carmel, was very wealthy. He had a thousand goats and three thousand sheep, which he was shearing in Carmel. 3 His name was Nabal and his wife’s name was Abigail. She was an intelligent and beautiful woman, but her husband was surly and mean in his dealings—he was a Calebite.
4 While David was in the wilderness, he heard that Nabal was shearing sheep. 5 So he sent ten young men and said to them, “Go up to Nabal at Carmel and greet him in my name. 6 Say to him: ‘Long life to you! Good health to you and your household! And good health to all that is yours!
7 “‘Now I hear that it is sheep-shearing time. When your shepherds were with us, we did not mistreat them, and the whole time they were at Carmel nothing of theirs was missing. 8 Ask your own servants and they will tell you. Therefore be favorable toward my men, since we come at a festive time. Please give your servants and your son David whatever you can find for them.’”
9 When David’s men arrived, they gave Nabal this message in David’s name. Then they waited.
10 Nabal answered David’s servants, “Who is this David? Who is this son of Jesse? Many servants are breaking away from their masters these days. 11 Why should I take my bread and water, and the meat I have slaughtered for my shearers, and give it to men coming from who knows where?”
At this time Saul was the king, and Samuel was Israel’s spiritual leader. After the death of Samuel, Israel would be without a spiritual leader until David became king. But until David became king, he was still moving about. He and his men were protecting different places and people’s workforces. Nabal was a very rich businessman and could afford many comforts in his living. David and his men were hired to protect his property and part of Nabal’s prosperity was due to this protection. David requested of Nabal to feed 600 of his men. This was not an unordinary request. Nabal refused. What Nabel did not consider was that he would not have what he had without the protection and help that David and his men provided. Being generous would have been the right thing to do. David was not asking for a hand out, nor was he asking for anything unreasonable. We can learn from this example. We should be generous to those who help us when they ask for some help in a time of need. It is the right thing to do.