Esther And Abigail
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When Esther entered the court of her husband, King Ahasuerus (Esther 5:1), she knew the risk. If she offended him, she would be put to death (Esther 4:11). For her husband was dictator of Persia, a drinker (Esther 1:10), proud and carnal (Esther 1:11), given to anger and wrath when frustrated (Esther 1:12). To not come when he called meant being stripped of position and place (Esther 1:19). To dare to come when he did not call could result in death (Esther 4:11).

Yet Esther knew that if she did not act, a great evil would occur. Her people, the Jews, would be robbed and slaughtered. Wicked Haman would triumph. And the King would be guilty of having allowed it because of his passivity and lack of discernment. Therefore, she did not remain silent (Esther 4:14).

When Abigail overrode her husband's decision to scorn David's men and send them away (I Samuel 25:10-11), she did not even take time to tell her husband of her plan of action. For her husband, Nabal, was "such a worthless man that no one can speak to him" (I Samuel 25:17). He was "harsh and evil in his dealings" (I Samuel 15:3) and given to drunkenness (I Samuel 25:36). To delay action put all the household at risk.

So Abigail sent food ahead, and quickly followed (I Samuel 25:18ff) to ask for mercy. David approved her actions and said, "Blessed be your discernment, and blessed be you, who have kept me this day from bloodshed, and from avenging myself by my own hand...nevertheless...unless you had come quickly to meet me, surely there would not have been left to Nabal until the morning light as much as one male" (I Samuel 25:32-34 NASV).

Neither of these women of God understood being a godly wife to mean giving into the flesh and fleshly mind of their husbands. They could not [and did not] remain passive and silent but took the risk of confronting the unfolding destruction set in motion by their husbands. In so doing, each woman was truly a "help suitable" (Genesis 2:20 NASV) to her husband: Esther saved Ahasuerus's honor; Abigail saved Nabal's life and household. And both women were honored in the Scriptures.

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