Ark of the Covenant - Bible History Online
Bible History Online
Picture Study Bible with Maps and Background Information

1 Samuel 25

1 - Samuel died; and all Israel gathered themselves together, and mourned for him, and buried him at his house at Ramah.Then David arose, and went down to the wilderness of Paran.

2 - There was a man in Maon, whose possessions were in Carmel; and the man was very great. He had three thousand sheep and a thousand goats; and he was shearing his sheep in Carmel.

3 - Now the name of the man was Nabal; and the name of his wife Abigail. This woman was intelligent and had a beautiful face; but the man was surly and evil in his doings. He was of the house of Caleb.

4 - David heard in the wilderness that Nabal was shearing his sheep.

5 - David sent ten young men, and David said to the young men, "Go up to Carmel, and go to Nabal, and greet him in my name.

6 - Tell him, 'Long life to you! Peace be to you, and peace be to your house, and peace be to all that you have.

7 - Now I have heard that you have shearers. Your shepherds have now been with us, and we didn't harm them, neither was there anything missing from them, all the while they were in Carmel.

8 - Ask your young men, and they will tell you. Therefore let the young men find favor in your eyes; for we come on a good day. Please give whatever comes to your hand, to your servants, and to your son David.'"

9 - When David's young men came, they spoke to Nabal all those words in the name of David, and waited.

10 - Nabal answered David's servants, and said, "Who is David? Who is the son of Jesse? There are many servants who break away from their masters these days.

11 - Shall I then take my bread, my water, and my meat that I have killed for my shearers, and give it to men who I don't know where they come from?"

12 - So David's young men turned on their way, and went back, and came and told him all these words.

13 - David said to his men, "Every man put on his sword!"Every man put on his sword. David also put on his sword. About four hundred men followed David, and two hundred stayed by the baggage.

14 - But one of the young men told Abigail, Nabal's wife, saying, "Behold, David sent messengers out of the wilderness to Greet our master; and he insulted them.

15 - But the men were very good to us, and we were not harmed, and we didn't miss anything, as long as we went with them, when we were in the fields.

16 - They were a wall to us both by night and by day, all the while we were with them keeping the sheep.

17 - Now therefore know and consider what you will do; for evil is determined against our master, and against all his house; for he is such a worthless fellow that one can't speak to him."

18 - Then Abigail hurried and took two hundred loaves of bread, two bottles of wine, five sheep ready dressed, five seahs of parched grain, one hundred clusters of raisins, and two hundred cakes of figs, and laid them on donkeys.

19 - She said to her young men, "Go on before me. Behold, I am coming after you." But she didn't tell her husband, Nabal.

20 - As she rode on her donkey, and came down by the covert of the mountain, that behold, David and his men came down toward her, and she met them.

21 - Now David had said, "Surely in vain I have kept all that this fellow has in the wilderness, so that nothing was missed of all that pertained to him. He has returned me evil for good.

22 - God do so to the enemies of David, and more also, if I leave of all that belongs to him by the morning light so much as one who urinates on a wall."

23 - When Abigail saw David, she hurried and got off of her donkey, and fell before David on her face, and bowed herself to the ground.

24 - She fell at his feet, and said, "On me, my lord, on me be the blame! Please let your servant speak in your ears. Hear the words of your servant.

25 - Please don't let my lord pay attention to this worthless fellow, Nabal; for as his name is, so is he. Nabal is his name, and folly is with him; but I, your servant, didn't see my lord's young men, whom you sent.

26 - Now therefore, my lord, as the LORD lives, and as your soul lives, since the LORD has withheld you from blood guiltiness, and from avenging yourself with your own hand, now therefore let your enemies, and those who seek evil to my lord, be as Nabal.

27 - Now this present which your servant has brought to my lord, let it be given to the young men who follow my lord.

28 - Please forgive the trespass of your servant. For the LORD will certainly make my lord a sure house, because my lord fights The LORD's battles. Evil will not be found in you all your days.

29 - Though men may rise up to pursue you, and to seek your soul, yet the soul of my lord will be bound in the bundle of life with the LORD your God. He will sling out the souls of your enemies, as from the hollow of a sling.

30 - It will come to pass, when the LORD has done to my lord according to all the good that he has spoken concerning you, and has appointed you prince over Israel,

31 - that this shall be no grief to you, nor offense of heart to my lord, either that you have shed blood without cause, or that my lord has avenged himself. When the LORD has dealt well with my lord, then remember your servant."

32 - David said to Abigail, "Blessed is The LORD, the God of Israel, who sent you today to meet me!

33 - Blessed is your discretion, and blessed are you, who have kept me today from blood guiltiness, and from avenging myself with my own hand.

34 - For indeed, as The LORD, the God of Israel, lives, who has withheld me from harming you, unless you had hurried and come to meet me, surely there wouldn't have been left to Nabal by the morning light so much as one who urinates on a wall."

35 - So David received from her hand that which she had brought him. Then he said to her, "Go up in peace to your house. Behold, I have listened to your voice, and have granted your request."

36 - Abigail came to Nabal; and behold, he held a feast in his house, like the feast of a king. Nabal's heart was merry within him, for he was very drunk. Therefore she told him nothing, until the morning light.

37 - In the morning, when the wine had gone out of Nabal, his wife told him these things, and his heart died within him, and he became as a stone.

38 - About ten days later, the LORD struck Nabal, so that he died.

39 - When David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, "Blessed is The LORD, who has pleaded the cause of my reproach from the hand of Nabal, and has kept back his servant from evil. the LORD has returned the evildoing of Nabal on his own head." David sent and spoke concerning Abigail, to take her to himself as wife.

40 - When David's servants had come to Abigail to Carmel, they spoke to her, saying, "David has sent us to you, to take you to him as wife."

41 - She arose, and bowed herself with her face to the earth, and said, "Behold, your servant is a servant to wash the feet of the servants of my lord."

42 - Abigail hurried, and arose, and rode on a donkey, with five ladies of hers who followed her; and she went after the messengers of David, and became his wife.

43 - David also took Ahinoam of Jezreel; and they both became his wives.

44 - Now Saul had given Michal his daughter, David's wife, to Palti the son of Laish, who was of Gallim.

1 Samuel Images and Notes

The Books of Samuel

1 Samuel 8:19 - Nevertheless the people refused to obey the voice of Samuel; and they said, Nay; but we will have a king over us;
1 Samuel 8:20 - That we also may be like all the nations; and that our king may judge us, and go out before us, and fight our battles.
1 Samuel 8:21 - And Samuel heard all the words of the people, and he rehearsed them in the ears of the LORD.
1 Samuel 8:22 - And the LORD said to Samuel, Hearken unto their voice, and make them a king.

The Old Testament - A Brief Overview

Bible Survery - Samuel
Hebrew Name - Shemuel "asked of God"
Greek Name - Samoeul (Greek form of the Hebrew)
Author - Samuel (According to Tradition)
Date - From 1171-1015 BC Approximately
Theme of 1 Samuel - The beginning of the kingdom
Theme of 2 Samuel - David, God's chosen king
Types and Shadows - In Samuel Jesus is God's anointed King

Quick Reference Map
Map of the Kingdom of Saul
Map of the Kingdom of Saul (Click to Enlarge)

Summary of The Books of Samuel

The original ancient Hebrew manuscripts recorded the books of Samuel as only one book. The first time these books were divided was in the Septuagint, the Greek version of the Hebrew Scriptures, and they were referred to as the First and Second Books of Kingdoms. 1 and 2 Kings were referred to as the Third and  Fourth Books of Kingdoms. When looking closely at the King James version of the Bible the titles are still arranged in this way.

Samuel is the name of the books in the ancient Hebrew text, because he was the author and the main character in the early portions in the first book, and because of his role as a prophet of God known from Dan to Beersheba, who had anointed and had the biggest influence on the lives of  King Saul and King David. The Lord raised up the prophet Samuel at a time in the history of Israel when they were disunited as a people and very determined to have a king reign over them. God made Samuel a great man, he was a Judge (1 Samuel 7:6, 15-17), and a Prophet (1 Samuel 3:20) and became  God's chosen link between the periods of the Judges and the United Kingdom.

According to Jewish tradition the books were written by Samuel himself. They deal with the period in Jewish history from the time of  Othniel the Judge through the reign of King David in the 11th and 10th centuries BC. This is of course one of the most important and significant times in the history of Israel, because their government changed from a system of tribes and judges to a kingdom by which the king would rule according to God's laws.

ARCHAEOLOGY

Ark Relief at Capernaum Synagogue

Close up of the Sculptured Block of the Ark at Capernaum

The ancient Ark of the covenant of Israel is one the most famous items in all of antiquity. There is no trace of the Ark of the covenant, yet it is memorialized by this Scripture block at the synagogue of Capernaum, created in Greco-Roman style. In the Bible the Ark of the Covenant was captured by the Philistines, and later returned because of sudden plagues that happened upon their lands. Through the valley of sorek it was taken back to Israel to Beth-shemesh.

Although there are a few repetitive content and accounts a clear outline is difficult, the contents of the two books may be outlined as follows:

Outline of the Books of Samuel

I. The Life of Samuel (1 Samuel 1-15)

1) The prayer of Hannah for a son, the granting of the request and the subsequent dedication of the child Samuel to the service of the Lord (1 Samuel 1:1-2: 10).
2) The sin of the sons of Eli which resulted in their death and the loss of the priesthood to the descendants of Eli (1 Samuel 2:12-36).
3) Samuel's vision concerning the house of Eli (1 Samuel 3).
4) The defeat of the Israelites and capture of the Ark by the Philistines and the death of Eli (1 Samuel 4).
5) The Ark in Philistine territory (1 Samuel 5:1-7 :4).
6) The return of the Ark and the establishment of Samuel as a judge over Israel (1 Samuel 7).
7) The appointment of Samuel's sons as judges and the consequent request for a king. Samuel warns the Israelites of the perils of being ruled over by a king (1 Samuel 8).
8) Saul's meeting with Samuel (1 Samuel 9).
9) The anointing and election of Saul as king (1 Samuel 10-11).
10) Samuel's address to the people, in which he defends his own record and exhorts them to walk in the way of the Lord (1 Samuel 12). From this time forward, he serves as an adviser to the king.

II. The Reign of Saul (1 Samuel 13 - 2 Samuel 1)

1) The offering of sacrifice by Saul in Samuel's absence. This constituted disobedience and resulted in God's disfavor toward Saul (1 Samuel 13).
2) Jonathan's rout of the Philistine army and his innocent breaking of Saul's foolish vow (1 Samuel 14).
3) Saul's disobedience in sparing some of the Amalekites and their cattle (1 Samuel 15). Samuel's reply to Saul's feeble excuse was the familiar "to obey is better than sacrifice and to hearken than the fat of rams" (1 Samuel 15:22 ).
4) The anointing of David to be Saul's successor (1 Samuel 16).
5) David and Goliath (1 Samuel 17).
6) The love of Jonathan and David and the marriage of the latter to the daughter of Saul (1 Samuel 18). Also included in this chapter is the first attempt of the jealous Saul to kill David.
7) Saul's second attempt on David's life (1 Samuel 19).
8) The parting of Jonathan and David (1 Samuel 20).
9) David's exile (1 Samuel 20-24).
10) The death of Samuel and the marriage of David to Abigail after the death of her churlish husband, Nabal (1 Samuel 25).
11) The gradual eclipse of Saul's power as he futilely sought to destroy David and protect his kingdom at the same time (1 Samuel 26-30).

III. The Reign of David (2 Samuel 2-25)

1) The proclamation of David as king at Hebron and his reign over Judah from that place.
2) The removal of the capital to Jerusalem (2 Samuel 5).
3) The bringing of the ark to Jerusalem (2 Samuel 6).
4) David's victories (2 Samuel 7-11:1).
5) David's sin with Bathsheba and the rebuke by Nathan the prophet (2 Samuel 11-12).
6) The rape of Tamar by Amnon, the revenge of Absalom and Amnon's murder; the flight of Absalom (2 Samuel 13).
7) Absalom's return, his efforts to usurp the throne of David and his death (2 Samuel 14-18).
8) David's return and Sheba's revolt (2 Samuel 19-20 ).
9) The famine and the victory over the Philistines (2 Samuel 21).
10) David's thanksgiving and last words (2 Samuel 22-23:7).
11) The names and exploits of David's "mighty men" (2 Samuel 23:8-39).
12) The census and the resultant plague (2 Samuel 24).

Quick Reference Maps - 1 Samuel

The Kingdom of Saul

Shiloh

Kirjath Jearim

Jabesh Gilead

Michmash

Judah in the Time of David

The City of Nob and David's Flight

Mount Gilboa

The Kingdom of David and Solomon

 

The First Day. Light.

1 Samuel Resources

The Judges
Samuel the Prophet
Saul, Israel's First King
King David

More About the Book of 1 Samuel
More About the Book of 2 Samuel
1 Samuel in the Picture Study Bible
2 Samuel in the Picture Study Bible
Timeline of the Ancient World
Back to the Old Testament
Back to Bible History Online