Here’s how I imagine the events of I Kings 25 playing out, after Nabal awoke from his last hangover:
I Samuel 25: 1-35
Abigail: Nabal, wake up!
Nabal: Oof. Good morning. I think.
Abigail: More like Good noon, almost.
Nabal: Wow! What a party that was last night. My head still hurts.
Abigail: Yes. You outdid last year’s sheep-shearing party by a mile.
Nabal: Except for the raisin cakes. We ran short on those. I thought we had more pressed figs on hand, too.
Abigail: That’s what I wanted to talk to you about.
Nabal: Don’t blame me if we ran short. The servants are stealing and eating them on the side, I’m sure. Just wait till I catch them! They’ll regret it.
Abigail: It wasn’t the servants who took them. I did.
Nabal: You! Surely you didn’t eat them all.
Abigail: No. I gave them away, hundreds of them, the day before. Along with some roasted grain, two flagons of wine–
Nabal: Why? And to whom? What do you think we are, rich or something?
Abigail: Actually, Nabal, we are. I gave them to David and his men. We could spare them. We couldn’t afford not to, actually.
Nabal: David? As in David, the son of Jesse?
Abigail: None other.
Nabal: That no-good, rebellious bandit who’s giving all our servants ideas about mocking authority and running away from their masters? The upstart who had the nerve to show up and demand a share of food in our annual party?
Abigail: I mean the anointed king of Israel who’s being unfairly pursued and persecuted by crazy King Saul.
Nabal: How dare you! That’s treasonous!
Abigail: If I’m a traitor for saying that, then so was the Prophet Samuel, who anointed David king.
Nabal: Not only are you talking treason, woman, you’re talking crazy!
Abigail: Crazy? What do you call insulting David and his band of armed men, and driving them away when they came to you for food?
Nabal: You mean while we were shearing sheep the other day? How did you know about that?
Abigail: The servants told me.
Nabal: They had no right to! I’ll punish them.
Abigail: Wait till you hear how they actually saved your hide.
Nabal: And what right did David and his band of merry men have to anything of mine?
Abigail: Have you forgotten the local code of hospitality for every time we throw a party? Or do you value the bottom line above our reputation and our community? And besides, all this year, David and his men have protected you and your flocks from raiders and bandits. That should count for something, too. Or have you no fear of God?
Nabal: Where did you hear such nonsense?
Abigail: From the servants, again.
Nabal: What do they know?
Abigail: They’re out in the fields all day, every day. That should count for something.
Nabal: So I dissed them a little. Its not like they live here or do business with me.
Abigail: “Dissed” is not the word. More like “humiliated”. And “infuriated”.
Nabal: How would you know?
Abigail: Again, the servants told me.
Nabal: Which ones?
Abigail: It doesn’t matter.
Nabal: Its bad enough that they’re talking behind my back. What’s worse is that you’re listening to them!
Abigail: They often have something to say that’s worth hearing.
Nabal: Like what?
Abigail: Like, David and his men were on their way to crash our party yesterday morning.
Nabal: Seriously? I’d like to have seen them try.
Abigail: With swords. And spears. And bows and arrows.
Nabal: My servants are armed. They know what to do with them.
Abigail: We have fifteen young men, who can wield a sword., at most If they’ll risk their skins to defend your hide, that is. But don’t count on it. The rest are women, children and their grandparents. David was coming with hundreds of men, all of them angry as hornets and spoiling for a fight, because of how you “dissed” them.
Nabal: Good heavens! How’d you know?
Abigail: I told you—
Nabal: The servants?
Abigail: The servants.
Nabal: I’m feeling sick. So what stopped them?
Abigail: Me. And one hundred raisin cakes, two hundred cakes of pressed figs, five dressed sheep, two flagons of wine…..
Nabal: You gave them that much? But how could we afford all that? Wouldn’t two sheep have sufficed? Or just one flagon of wine?
Abigail: Nabal, they were ready to kill us all! And you’re worrying about how many sheep they got?
Nabal: So, what did you tell them?
Abigail: I apologized in your stead. Like you should have done.
Nabal: You……you….APOLOGIZED? For me? You shamed me!
Abigail: Would you rather be dead?
Nabal: I don’t know what’s worse, the loss of all those goods, or the shame of an apology, by my wife, in my name. How could you? I’ll be the laughingstock of the whole valley!
Abigail: Nabal! Would you rather I had died? Or that we all had died? While you were gearing up for a party, we were that close to taking our last breaths!
Nabal: No! How close?
Abigail: I met David and his men coming down the hill just the other side of the well.
Nabal: They were that close? And I didn’t know?
Abigail: There’s a lot you don’t know, Nabal. Besides, would I kid you about something like that? ……well?……answer me ……….Nabal?…..open your eyes and look at me!… ….Nabal?…..Wake up!…..Oh, my heavens! Servants!. Someone get me the nurse!…Nabal’s collapsed! Nurse!
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