This week our guest writer, Scott Parker, asks whether “our provision has dulled our humility.” Has our abundance caused us to forget Jesus’ call to sacrifice so we can walk in solidarity with “the least of these?”
Nabal answered David’s servants, “Who is this David? Who is this son of Jesse? Many servants are breaking away from their masters these days. 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?” – 1 Samuel 25:10-11
The name Nabal is similar to the Hebrew word for fool. Like, “The fool hath said in his heart, there is no God (Psalm 53:1).” Jesus wasn’t scared to identify a “Nabal” in his parable about a man who stored up his riches so he could retire in ease. “You fool! God said to the man, ‘This very night your life will be demanded from you’”. Likewise, Nabal is living in a warped understanding of reality. In his twisted point of view, the fact that David has a need, must mean that David is his inferior. Unlike Jacob, who saw himself as unworthy and cried out for mercy, Nabal sees no need to show David any respect. “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?”
Do we find ourselves feeling superior when people come to us in need? Has our provision dulled our humility? Have we equated opportunity and the fruit of our labors with being worthy? Are we recipients of an unjust system governed by unjust Nabals? Do we benefit from those who have insulted the least of these and God’s anointed who identifies with them?
He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me. Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life." - Matthew 25: 45-46.