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1 Samuel 25:18-44 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

18 Avigayil wasted no time in taking 200 loaves of bread, two skins of wine, five sheep already prepared, six quarts of roasted grain, a hundred clusters of raisins and 200 fig cakes, and having them loaded on donkeys. 19 Then she said to her young men, “Go on ahead of me, and I’ll come along after you.” But she didn’t tell her husband Naval.

20 She was riding her donkey down past the hiding-place in the mountain, when David and his men descended toward her, and she met them. 21 David had said, “What a waste it has been guarding everything this fellow has in the desert, so that nothing of his was missing! He has repaid me bad for good!” 22 Then he swore, “May God do the same and more to David’s enemies if I leave alive even one male of everything he owns.”

23 When Avigayil saw David, she hurried to dismount from her donkey, fell on her face in front of David and bowed down to the ground. 24 Having fallen at his feet, she said, “It’s all my fault, my lord, all my fault! Please let your servant speak in your ears, and listen to what your servant says. 25 Please! My lord shouldn’t pay any attention to this worthless fellow Naval, because he’s just like his name — ‘Naval’ means ‘boor,’ and his boorishness stays with him. But I, your servant, did not see my lord’s men, whom you sent. 26 Therefore, my lord, as Adonai lives, and as you live, inasmuch as Adonai has kept you from the guilt of shedding blood and from taking vengeance into your own hands — therefore, may your enemies and anyone seeking your harm be [as worthless] as Naval. 27 Meanwhile, let this present which your servant has brought to my lord be given to the men in my lord’s service. 28 And please forgive the offense your servant has caused; because Adonai will certainly establish my lord’s dynasty, for my lord fights Adonai’s battles, and nothing bad has been found in you all your life long. 29 Even if someone comes along searching for you and seeking your life, your life will be bound in the bundle of life with Adonai your God. But the lives of your enemies he will fling away as if from the pouch of a slingshot. 30 Then, when Adonai has done all the good to my lord that he has said about you and made you ruler over Isra’el, 31 what happens here will not have become an obstacle to you or a cause for remorse to my lord, neither that you shed blood without cause nor that my lord took vengeance into his own hands. Finally, when Adonai has dealt well with my lord, then remember your servant.”

32 David said to Avigayil, “Blessed be Adonai the God of Isra’el, who sent you today to meet me; 33 and blessed be your tactfulness, and blessed be yourself for having kept me today from the guilt of shedding blood and taking vengeance into my own hands. 34 For as Adonai the God of Isra’el, lives, who has kept me from harming you, if you hadn’t rushed to meet me, not even one male would have been left to Naval by morning!” 35 So David received from her what she had brought him, then said to her, “Go up in peace to your home. I have listened to what you said and granted your request.”

36 Avigayil came to Naval; there he was in his house, holding a feast fit for a king. He was in high spirits, because he was very drunk. So she told him nothing whatever until the next morning. 37 In the morning, when he was sober and his wife told him what had happened, he had a stroke and became as motionless as a stone. 38 Some ten days later Adonai struck Naval, and he died.

39 When David heard that Naval was dead, he said, “Blessed be Adonai for having taken my side in the matter of Naval’s insult and for having prevented his servant from doing anything bad. On the contrary, Adonai has caused Naval’s bad deeds to return on his own head.” Then David sent a message that he wanted to make Avigayil his own wife. 40 When David’s servants reached Avigayil in Karmel, they said to her, “David has sent us to you to bring you to him to be his wife.” 41 She got up, bowed with her face to the ground, and said, “Your servant is here to serve you, to wash the feet of my lord’s servants.” 42 Avigayil then hurried, set out and rode off on a donkey, with five of her female servants following her; she went after David’s messengers; and she became his wife. 43 David also took Achino‘am of Yizre‘el; both of them became his wives.

44 Meanwhile, Sha’ul had given Mikhal his daughter, David’s wife, to Palti the son of Layish, who came from Gallim.

Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Copyright © 1998 by David H. Stern. All rights reserved.

1 Samuel 25:18-44 Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

18 Abigail hurried, taking two hundred loaves of bread, two clay jars of wine, five butchered sheep, a bushel[a] of roasted grain, one hundred clusters of raisins, and two hundred cakes of pressed figs, and loaded them on donkeys. 19 Then she said to her male servants, “Go ahead of me. I will be right behind you.” But she did not tell her husband Nabal.

20 As she rode the donkey down a mountain pass hidden from view, she saw David and his men coming toward her and met them. 21 David had just said, “I guarded everything that belonged to this man in the wilderness for nothing. He was not missing anything, yet he paid me back evil for good. 22 May God punish me[b] and do so severely if I let any of his males[c] survive until morning.”

23 When Abigail saw David, she quickly got off the donkey and knelt down with her face to the ground and paid homage to David. 24 She knelt at his feet and said, “The guilt is mine, my lord, but please let your servant speak to you directly. Listen to the words of your servant. 25 My lord should pay no attention to this worthless fool Nabal, for he lives up to his name:[d] His name means ‘stupid,’ and stupidity is all he knows.[e] I, your servant, didn’t see my lord’s young men whom you sent. 26 Now my lord, as surely as the Lord lives and as you yourself live— it is the Lord who kept you from participating in bloodshed and avenging yourself by your own hand—may your enemies and those who intend to harm my lord be like Nabal. 27 Let this gift your servant has brought to my lord be given to the young men who follow my lord. 28 Please forgive your servant’s offense, for the Lord is certain to make a lasting dynasty for my lord because he fights the Lord’s battles. Throughout your life, may evil[f] not be found in you.

29 “Someone is pursuing you and intends to take your life. My lord’s life is tucked safely in the place[g] where the Lord your God protects the living, but he is flinging away your enemies’ lives like stones from a sling. 30 When the Lord does for my lord all the good he promised you and appoints you ruler over Israel, 31 there will not be remorse or a troubled conscience for my lord because of needless bloodshed or my lord’s revenge. And when the Lord does good things for my lord, may you remember me your servant.”

32 Then David said to Abigail, “Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, who sent you to meet me today! 33 May your discernment be blessed, and may you be blessed. Today you kept me from participating in bloodshed and avenging myself by my own hand. 34 Otherwise, as surely as the Lord God of Israel lives, who prevented me from harming you, if you had not come quickly to meet me, Nabal wouldn’t have had any males[h] left by morning light.” 35 Then David accepted what she had brought him and said, “Go home in peace. See, I have heard what you said and have granted your request.”

36 Then Abigail went to Nabal, and there he was in his house, holding a feast fit for a king. Nabal’s heart was cheerful,[i] and he was very drunk, so she didn’t say anything[j] to him until morning light.

37 In the morning when Nabal sobered up,[k] his wife told him about these events. His heart died[l] and he became a stone. 38 About ten days later, the Lord struck Nabal dead.

39 When David heard that Nabal was dead, he said, “Blessed be the Lord who championed my cause against Nabal’s insults and restrained his servant from doing evil. The Lord brought Nabal’s evil deeds back on his own head.”

Then David sent messengers to speak to Abigail about marrying him. 40 When David’s servants came to Abigail at Carmel, they said to her, “David sent us to bring you to him as a wife.”

41 She stood up, paid homage with her face to the ground, and said, “Here I am, your servant, a slave to wash the feet of my lord’s servants.” 42 Then Abigail got up quickly, and with her five female servants accompanying her, rode on the donkey following David’s messengers. And so she became his wife.

43 David also married Ahinoam of Jezreel, and the two of them became his wives. 44 But Saul gave his daughter Michal, David’s wife, to Palti son of Laish, who was from Gallim.


  1. 25:18 Lit sheep, five seahs
  2. 25:22 LXX; MT reads David’s enemies
  3. 25:22 Lit of those of his who are urinating against the wall
  4. 25:25 Lit for as is his name is, so he is
  5. 25:25 Lit and foolishness is with him
  6. 25:28 Or trouble
  7. 25:29 Lit bundle
  8. 25:34 Lit had anyone urinating against a wall
  9. 25:36 Lit Nabal’s heart was good on him
  10. 25:36 Lit anything at all
  11. 25:37 Lit when the wine had gone out of Nabal
  12. 25:37 Lit Then his heart died within him
Christian Standard Bible (CSB)

The Christian Standard Bible. Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible®, and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers, all rights reserved.

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