WHO IS WISE AND UNDERSTANDING?
Shemuʼĕl Aleph/1 Samuel 25
Shalom family, all praise and esteem unto יהוה our Mighty Elohim.
In a day and age where true wisdom from Elohim is scoffed at we see the sad tragedy of so many who are absolutely clueless of what lies ahead; and what we need to realise, as servants of the Most High, is the critical necessity of continually giving our ear to hearing the Torah of יהוה, guarding it in our hearts and be found daily to be doing all He has commanded us to, or else we may too find ourselves “sleepwalking” like so many who will be awakened at the sound of the Trumpet blast to a tragic reality of their vain attempts at worship and heading for judgement lest they turn and repent!
Ya’aqoḇ/James 3:13 “Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show by his good behaviour his works in meekness of wisdom.”
In a message tonight called, “Who is wise and understanding?” I would like us to look at a passage of Scripture that carries great lessons for us in making sure we are awake, and listening attentively to The Word of יהוה. Please turn to Shemuʼĕl Aleph/1 Samuel 25 (Read)
In a nutshell what we see in this chapter is the following – Dawiḏ is on the run from Kings Sha’ul who is seeking his life and at this point, after already sparing Sha’ul’s life we see Dawiḏ going down into the Wilderness of Paran, after the death of the great prophet and last judge of Yisra’ĕl, Shemuʼĕl, had died and was buried in his home town of Ramah. While in the Wilderness Dawiḏ sends 10 of his men to a rich sheep farmer to ask for some food and supplies for him and his men in light of how they had shown favour to Naḇal’s shepherds. Naḇal responded arrogantly and refused, which angered Dawiḏ who was ready to wipe out Naḇal and all his men when Aḇiḡayil, the wife of Naḇal, interceded and provided a great provision for Dawiḏ and his men and pleaded with him to relent to which Dawiḏ blesses her faith and courage and listened to her plea. When she told her husband the next day, Naḇal’s heart died within him and turned to stone and 10 days later יהוה struck him and he died, and Dawiḏ asked Aḇiḡayil to be his wife, which she accepted and so became his wife.
That is the basic outline but there lies a whole lot more for us to absorb and understand in gaining a greater shadow picture of the events that lie ahead at the soon 2nd coming of our Bridegroom, יהושע Messiah. Let us look at some key passages that paint this wonderful picture for us that we may be encouraged to be found to be a wise and understanding Bride, ready and dressed in Righteousness, hearing, guarding and doing His commands with great joy!
Before we do that here are a couple of passages to start off with in terms of being wise and understanding:
Tehillim/Psalm 119:104 “From Your orders I get understanding; therefore I have hated every false way.”
Tehillim/Psalm 119:130 “The opening up of Your words gives light, giving understanding to the simple.”
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 2:6 “For יהוה gives wisdom; out of His mouth come knowledge and understanding.”
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 4:5 “Get wisdom! Get understanding! Do not forget, and do not turn away From the words of my mouth.”
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 4:7 “The beginning of wisdom is: Get wisdom! And with all your getting, get understanding.”
We need to be a people who ‘get’ wisdom and understanding – and where do we get it from? From יהוה – from out of His mouth – that is His Word – and it is from His ‘orders’ that we get understanding – His orders are His precepts/commands and so we have to ask “how do we get these?” That is easy to answer – by HEARING!
For those who may have forgotten, remember the word in Hebrew for ‘Hear’ is the root word שָׁמַע ‘shama’ – Strong’s H8085, which carries the meaning not just simply to hear, but rather to ‘listen with attention, comprehend and discern, give heed to what is being spoken’.
Understanding our need to be a people who are listening attentively and giving heed to His Word in a time when most are not let us now look a little deeper at Shemuʼĕl Aleph/1 Samuel 25:
In verse 1 we see how the scene is set: Shemuʼĕl died! Shemuʼĕl the great prophet and last judge of Yisra’ĕl had died. Shemuʼĕl - שְׁמוּאֵל Strong’s H8050 means ‘El has heard’ or some translate it as ‘name of El’ and is from the passive participle of 1 - שָׁמַע shama – Strong’s H8085 which we have already mentioned as meaning ‘hearing and understanding attentively and completely’ and 2 - אֵל el – Strong’s H410 meaning ‘mighty, power or mighty one’ and is also used as a title of יהוה. Understanding this in the context and setting of this chapter we see a very powerful metaphor being described by the death of Shemuʼĕl in a twofold way: The prophet who declared the Name of El was dead – and so in one sense we see that the ‘hearing of El’ had died and in another we can see how El had closed His ears to a rebellious people – a picture of how it shall be and now is in the last days when many stop obeying יהוה and close their ears to the Truth, substituting the Truth for ear tickling lies and as a result will not be heard by Him!
Hoshěa/Hosea 4:10 “And they shall eat but not be satisfied, they shall whore but not increase, for they have stopped obeying יהוה.”
Zeḵaryah/Zechariah 7:11-12 “But they refused to listen, and they shrugged their shoulders, and stopped their ears from hearing. 12 “And they made their hearts like flint against hearing the Torah, and the words, which יהוה of hosts had sent by His Spirit through the former prophets. Therefore great wrath came from יהוה of hosts.”
People are dying for lack of knowledge and those who reject His knowledge and refuse to give ear to His Torah He will reject them from being priests for Him! We are called to be a royal priesthood and if you refuse to hear His Torah, He will reject you form being a priest for Him! Serving as a priesthood carries with it great responsibility and as we have seen in the Torah portion of late regarding the instructions of the Tabernacle, its service and furnishings we see clearly that there is a clear and prescribed way of doing the service in the Tabernacle. What we are to remember is that the Tabernacle was a shadow of what is in Heaven and when people neglect to understand how the service in the Tabernacle is prescribed with all it details, then in essence they are neglecting to understand what is in Heaven and are in fact in rebellion for neglecting to reflect that which is in Heaven by adhering to the commands of Elohim as they shut their ears from His Torah!
In Yirmeyahu we see 3 instances where Yirmeyahu is even commanded to not intercede for the rebellious as He will not hear:
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 7:16 “And you, do not pray for this people, nor lift up a cry or prayer for them, nor make intercession to Me, for I do not hear you.”
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 11:14 “And you, do not pray for this people, or lift up a cry or prayer for them, for I do not hear them in the time that they cry out to Me because of their evil.”
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 14:11-12 “And יהוה said to me, “Do not pray for this people for their good. 12 “When they fast, I do not hear their cry. And when they offer burnt offering and grain offering, I do not accept them. Instead, I am consuming them by sword, and by scarcity of food, and by pestilence.”
These very sobering words of יהוה not hearing is not without cause – you reject Him and close your ears to the hearing of His Torah then He will close His ears to your prayers!
Mishlĕ/proverbs 28:9 “He who turns away his ear from hearing the Torah, even his prayer is an abomination.”
So many today who are turning their ear away from the Torah, should heed these words lest their prayers be abominable before יהוה!
This may sound very harsh as we all may argue that He heard our prayers while we did not walk in the Torah. Now as true as that may be for many can bear witness to answered prayers, what we must understand is that while He may have heard many prayers of His children while in bondage – the fact of the matter is that when He comes to fetch His Bride, He is coming for a ready dressed Bride who is walking in the Torah and those who are not walking in the Torah and refuse to hear, guard and do will awaken to the reality that their prayers have been in vain. So while this verse echoes a harsh reality may we be awake to the fact that we are to be giving our ear to the Torah, which means to hear and do, so that our prayers are pleasing before Him and not strange and profane.
In setting the stage for the reality of the last days we see that Dawiḏ went down to the Wilderness of Paran. Now we know that it is in the Wilderness journey that we learn to hear the voice of יהוה. Dawiḏ would then make his journey to Naḇal from Paran, and as we mentioned last week Paran, meaning ‘place of caverns’ and also from the root word means ‘especially beautiful/adorned, gleaning’ and this language would have been familiar to Yisra’ĕl as it would remind them of that which Mosheh spoke before his death and would be a sober reminder to repent and return to יהוה who comes from His beautiful hiding place and being prophetic in nature to His second coming!
In verse 2-3 we are then introduced to Naḇal, who was a very rich farmer in Maʽon and his work in Karmel. Naḇal -נָבָל Strong’s H5037 means … ‘FOOL’… yes … ‘fool, senseless, foolish’!!! This man was a FOOL!
Maʽon - מָעוֹן Strong’s H4584 means ‘habitation or dwelling place’ and Karmel - כַּרְמֶל Strong’s H3760 means ‘plentiful, fruitful, fertile land’. From this we get a clear picture – a fool who was dwelling in luxury! This guy had it all – according to the flesh that is and in the world’s eyes was extremely wealthy.
His wife, Aḇiḡayil - אֲבִיגַיִל Strong’s H26 means ‘my father is joy/glad’ and as we see through this story that she truly represents how we are to serve our Father with joy, for if we do not then we cannot serve Him at all! She was a woman of good understanding and beautiful – beauty and brains – a picture of the remnant Bride being adorned with Righteousness and walking in the understanding thereof. Sadly she married a fool – it may seem an odd mix, but sometimes marriages were arranged and we do not know how they came to be married – perhaps she was lured by initial attraction and then she remained a faithful wife, even interceding for her foolish husband.
Naḇal was described as ‘hard and evil’ in his doings – in other words he was not doing righteousness! The word used here for hard is קָשֶׁה qasheh – Strong’s H7186 and means ‘hard, harsh, cruel, obstinate, stiff necked and stubborn’ and evil is רַע ra – Strong’s h7451 and is used to mean ‘ evil, bad, wicked, selfish, deadly, harmful’. I think we all get the picture – this guy was a rich wicked, cruel and stubborn man! How did he get such a wife? Perhaps through manipulation – we don’t know but we see this kind of odd mix many times in the world today and Aḇiḡayil lived up to the future words of Sha’ul and Kěpha on being submissive wives with the incorruptible ornament of a meek and peaceable spirit, which is of great value before Elohim.
Dawiḏ heard that Naḇal was shearing sheep and sends 10 of his men to go in peace to Naḇal and ask for some supplies for Dawiḏ and his men. יהושע told His disciples:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 10:11-15 “And into whatever city or village you enter, ask who is worthy in it, and stay there until you leave. 12 “And as you enter into a house, greet it. 13 “And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it. But if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. 14 “And whoever does not receive you nor hear your words, when you leave that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet. 15 “Truly, I say to you, it shall be more bearable for the land of Seḏom and Amorah in the day of judgment than for that city!”
Dawiḏ’s men extended his shalom but were not received by a stubborn and wicked man!
What is striking in the context of some key markers in this passage is that in verse 8 they told Naḇal “We have come on a good day”. This language used indicates that it was not just an ordinary day but rather gives reference to a ‘Feast day’ and in the context here I see this as a shadow of Yom Teruah! Dawiḏ sent his men to announce that he was here and expected to be received and welcomed by a man who certainly had the means to be hospitable, yet was denied and so the wrath of Dawiḏ was about to be unleashed upon this fool who refused to welcome them! This time of ‘shearing sheep’ is also a picture for us of a time of exposing the false garments of those who have claimed to be worshippers of Elohim yet are simply sheep that have gone astray in their vain traditions and dogmas! Yeshayahu/Isaiah 53:6 “We all, like sheep, went astray, each one of us has turned to his own way. And יהוה has laid on Him the crookedness of us all.”
The solution to us all who went astray (and we all have for we have all sinned and fallen short) is to turn to Him who saves us and acknowledge Him. Sadly many who close their ears to the Torah are denying and bringing the Name of יהוה to nought!
In verse 10 Naḇal says, “Who is Dawiḏ?” Now everyone knew who Dawiḏ was – he had killed Golyath/Goliath and was a national hero and Aḇiḡayil, Naḇal’s wife had recognised and realised that Dawiḏ had already been chosen by יהוה to be king as we see clearly by her words in verse 30; yet this stubborn fool was too stiff necked to humble himself and serve the future king and his men and was intentionally insulting Dawiḏ by making himself sound important because of his wealth. It was widely known that Dawiḏ was soon to be king and that Sha’ul sought his life because Dawiḏ had been anointed to become king. Naḇal was wrong, while Aḇiḡayil remained meek and interceded and fell on her face before Dawiḏ and pleaded with him not to bring about the killing of her wicked husband and his men.
We know the result of the story – Naḇal was cast down while Aḇiḡayil was lifted up:
Tehillim/Psalm 147:6 “יהוה lifts up the meek ones, He throws the wrong ones down to the ground.”
Dawiḏ’s’ words to his men meant business and this wise and humble wife appeased him from carrying out his plans:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 16:14 “The sovereign’s wrath is a messenger of death, But a wise man appeases it.”
Naḇal not receiving Dawiḏ is a picture of how the Yehuḏim did not receive יהושע and have been given time to repent until He comes again! So many today are simply just too comfortable in their fleshly living standards that they simply refuse to acknowledge and submit to the coming King! And while they may accept falsified names and vain presentations of the Creator, when confronted with the Truth they simply refuse to acknowledge and are basically declaring, “Who is יהוה?” or “Who is יהושע?” And by doing so are basically declaring by their rebellious attitude toward the Torah and their lawless actions that there is no יהוה, and this is the wickedness of a fools talk!
Naḇal was a fool and showed it by his foolish words revealing the wickedness that was in his heart:
Tehillim/Psalm 14:1 “The fool has said in his heart, “There is no יהוה.” They have done corruptly, they have done an abominable deed, there is no one who does good.”
There are many today who are as foolish as Naḇal and are too in essence declaring that there is no יהוה, for by their corrupt living that is contrary to Torah they are bringing His Name to nought for which he will not leave unpunished anyone who brings His Name to nought!
In the great intercession of Aḇiḡayil, Dawiḏ blesses her for her courage and faith and her speaking up is a picture of the spirit of Eliyahu that must come again before the Great and Awesome Day of יהוה.
Mal’aḵi/Malachi 4:5-6 “See, I am sending you Ěliyahu the prophet before the coming of the great and awesome day of יהוה. 6 “And he shall turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with utter destruction.”
It is through His faithful remnant Bride that He will send Eliyahu in preparing for His coming, as we begin to lift up our voice in the Wilderness and stand up for righteousness!
Aḇiḡayil made it on time – for Dawiḏ would have struck the next morning, but had now accepted her hand her gift and when she got home her husband was drunk – he was exceedingly drunk and so she did not talk to him until the next day when he was sober.
In understanding this picture of how the world, which Naḇal represents, will be given over to partying and drinking and feeding the flesh to the tilt and will be like the days of Noaḥ before the flood not knowing the times and are unable to hear His trumpet call to repentance:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 24:37-39 “And as the days of Noaḥ, so also shall the coming of the Son of Aḏam be. 38 “For as they were in the days before the flood, eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noaḥ entered into the ark, 39 and they did not know until the flood came and took them all away, so also shall the coming of the Son of Aḏam be.”
Well here we see a picture of what will happen – The Trumpet will blast and only the Remnant will be ready and have their hands filled with that which id for Messiah. When Naḇal heard the words he had a stroke – his heart died within him and he became like stone! A clear picture of those who refuse to submit and obey – they will even get harder – his heart was no longer able to have the Torah written on it and his wickedness reached a climax:
Ḥazon/Revelation 22:11 “He who does wrong, let him do more wrong; he who is filthy, let him be more filthy; he who is righteous, let him be more righteous; he who is set-apart, let him be more set-apart.”
In verse 38 we see a key pointer to the Feast of Yom Kippur – ten days later יהוה smote Naḇal and he died! It is on this Day that יהושע will come out of the Most Set-Apart Place and tread the winepress and all who have not received Him will be destroyed. The 10 days between Yom Teruah and Yom Kippur we will see that the Trumpet will be sounded to gather the bride and will be a time of testing through trials as the plagues are poured out and the remnant is called to hold fast and endure. I firmly believe that those who do not respond to the Trumpet call will as Naḇal keep on drinking and going their own merry way to destruction but those who hear the voice of the shofar will respond and are called to endure these 10 days until יהושע comes out and takes us as His Bride.
Hear the words of יהושע in:
Ḥazon/Revelation 2: 8-11 “And to the messenger of the assembly in Smurna write, ‘This says the First and the Last, who became dead, and came to life: 9 “I know your works, and pressure, and poverty – yet you are rich – and the blasphemy of those who say they are Yehuḏim and are not, but are a congregation of Satan. 10 “Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. See, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, in order to try you, and you shall have pressure ten days. Be trustworthy until death, and I shall give you the crown of life. 11 “He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies. He who overcomes shall by no means be harmed by the second death.”
This will be a time of separating the sheep and the goats – those who claim to be believers but are not and are of the congregation of Satan as their vain worship of inherited lies is blasphemy – will be shown up for who they are and who they have been worshipping. The faithful are called to endure 10 days and overcome!
Dawiḏ heard that Naḇal was dead and then sent for and spoke to Aḇiḡayil, to take her as wife. The word used here for ‘take’ is לָקַח laqach – Strong’s H3947 and means ‘to take, to fetch, to lay hold of, marry or take a wife ’ and this in the Hebrew mind draws the picture of a Hebrew wedding when at the sound of the Last Trumpet the groom comes to fetch His Bride and take her as wife. The other term typically understood in the groom coming to take His Bride is נָשָׂא nasa – Strong’s H5375 which means ‘lift up, carry, take, exalt, and accept’. This word is used in verse 35 when Dawiḏ told Aḇiḡayil that he had listened to her voice and accepted her face!
What a wonderful picture of Messiah who comes for His Bride and accepts her face and hears her voice – she is accepted in the Beloved and is taken up – this is marriage language!!!
In verse 41 she presents herself to wash his servants feet, showing great humility as a wife of the Coming King who had been on the ‘battlefield’ and here we see the picture of preparation for the wedding – for Messiah’s feet will be full of the Blood of the winepress and His feet will be washed by the tears of repentance of the Bride, washing away the wickedness He has tramped and destroyed.
Aḇiḡayil then takes haste to get ready and rises up and rides on a donkey – she had been exalted to a new position with the King יהוה had chosen and takes with her 5 maidens on her way to her wedding! This is a great picture of Sukkot and here we again see end time pictures as the 5 maidens represent the 5 wise maidens who had oil in their lamps who listen attentively and understand the times, while the other 5 foolish maidens who were not ready and did not hear His voice were not able to enter the wedding feast.
What we also see as a wonderful picture of the Full Bride of Messiah is in verse 43 when the record states that Dawiḏ had also taken Aḥinoʽam of Yizreʽĕl as wife and so both were his wives. This is clearly a picture of the two houses coming together as a Bride unto Messiah!
אֲחִינֹעַם Aḥinoʽam – Strong’s H293 means ‘my brother is delight’ and coming from Yizreʽĕl, which means ‘those יהוה has scattered’ as seen in Hoshěa 1:4-11 which refers to the Northern Kingdom, whose brother Yehuḏah has acted as a redeemer to bring them back from exile. It also shadow pictures Messiah in Yosĕph who redeemed his brothers in Mitsrayim and so we see a wonderful picture here of the Feast of Sukkoth being celebrated by a complete Bride having been brought together to be one with Messiah!
Why does this passage carry great instruction for us? Well we can clearly see a picture of future events and can be encouraged to not be stiff necked and foolish as Naḇal, but rather walk in humility and wisdom like Aḇiḡayil. Our King is Coming and when that Trumpet sound blasts are you ready to stand firm dressed in His armour or will you be found wanting!
Eph’siyim/Ephesians 5:6 “Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these the wrath of Elohim comes upon the sons of disobedience.”
Let us not be found to be drunk on the wine of the wrath of the whorings of Baḇel but walk as children of light filled with the Spirit of Wisdom.
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 10:6-8 “Blessings are on the head of the righteous, but violence covers the mouth of the wrong. 7 The remembrance of the righteous is blessed, but the name of the wrong ones rot. 8 The wise in heart accepts commands, but one with foolish lips falls.”
Will you be wise and accept his commands or a fool whose words and actions will fall? This wise accept the King’s commands and are ‘accepted’ before Him as He lifts us up as we come and bow and humble ourselves before Him!
Who is wise and understanding? Let it be seen in your life as you walk in the Torah with all meekness – for the meek shall inherit the earth!