Matters of Faith: A Fool And His Words

Rev. J_Loren RussellA FOOL AND HIS WORDS!

Reverend J. Loren Russell, BA, MDiv.

1 Samuel 25:25 (NIV)
25 Please pay no attention, my lord, to that wicked man Nabal. He is just like his name—his name means Fool, and folly goes with him. And as for me, your servant, I did not see the men my lord sent.


The Bible has an interesting definition of a fool. Solomon wrote, “Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions [Proverbs 18:2 (NIV)].” Nabal is the name of a man that his wife Abigail describes as — and what his names means —  a fool. The Bible says that he was harsh and evil in his doings. in spite being a descendant of Caleb, one of the twelve spies Moses sent into the Promised Land, and only one of two who returned with a good report. Those two, Joshua and Caleb, were the only ones from the entire nation of Israel to enter that land.


This fascinating story of Nabal found is in 1 Samuel 25. The author shares how David, who was hiding out in the wilderness with his army of soldiers, sent men to get food at a feast hosted by a very wealthy man named Nabal. David felt Nabal would be receptive since he watched over, protected and generously provided for his shepherds when they were in the fields. Nabal refused to give David’s men anything, emphatically stating, “10 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?


Nabal had broken the hospitality code of the day when he did not give what was asked for, and did not extend an invitation for David to join his feast. When a fool is in charge, we can expect to hear foolish things. But contrary to what has been voiced in the media over the last few days, they are not “just words.” The words we speak have consequences.


One of Nabal’s servants went and told his wife Abigail what happened. She immediately gathered the items and took them to David, making intercession and asking that David forgive her husband for being a fool. It was due to her actions, her gifts, and her good judgement that David relented from sending 400 soldiers to “34 Otherwise, as surely as the Lord, the God of Israel, lives, who has kept me from harming you, if you had not come quickly to meet me, not one male belonging to Nabal would have been left alive by daybreak. 35 Then David accepted from her hand what she had brought him and said, “Go home in peace. I have heard your words and granted your request.


Paul encourages his readers in Ephesus, “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen” (Ephesians 4:29 NIV).


I may as well say it; the presidential race has disintegrated to a level I never thought I’d see in American politics. Although I’ve never thought of the President of the United States or any other high elected official as the moral compass of the nation, I do believe they must have some decency and a healthy respect for the people they govern.
If you’re still trying to decide which candidate will get your vote (and please do cast your vote!). If you’re not sure because you can’t discern where they stand on the issues that are near and dear to your heart, let me suggest, as a matter of faith, that you listen carefully to what comes out of their mouths. Remember what “10 Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen and understand. 11 What goes into someone’s mouth does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them.” (Matthew 15: 10-11 NIV)

Be Blessed!

Rev. J. Loren Russell is an associate minister at both Goodwill and The Greater Universal Baptist Churches in the Bronx, President/CEO of The JLR Company for Church Financial & Strategic Consulting, and hosts “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” on Soul 1 Radio (internet), Mondays 8:00 – 10:00 PM. Listen here or by phone at 626-226-1448. Be sure to friend “Matters of Faith” on Facebook. Email us at

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