20 Now Michal, Saul’s daughter, loved David. And they told Saul, and the thing pleased him. 21 So Saul said, “I will give her to him, that she may be a snare to him, and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him.” Therefore Saul said to David a second time, “You shall be my son-in-law today.” 1 Samuel 18:20-21 NKJV
Many of us have been gifted with a spouse from heaven.
No partner is perfect. We are all human and subject to the tarnish of sin, foolish thoughts, and self-centered actions. We may argue, pout, complain or dislike each other from time to time. But despite our many shortcomings, the gift of a good spouse from God is the pinnacle of life, something to be treasured and cherished each day. There is no greater joy than a beloved spouse who is themselves joyful and content to be sharing their daily life with us.
We all know those who mourn for years after losing the blessed presence of the one who came from God’s hand and has returned to the same. Each one of us in that position would do the same. We also know many who face unwanted loneliness, and have not had the experience of a God-given partner to walk through life with.
When David slayed Goliath, he was ready to receive the promised reward for such a victory, King Saul’s first daughter in marriage. Saul was initially willing to go through with this for David, but he withdrew the offer as soon as he began to be jealous of him.
When Saul learned that his younger daughter, Michal, was in love with David, he switched his offer of marriage to her. He did this because he believed that Michal would be a snare to David. Exactly why she would be a snare, we do not know. But Saul felt that she would be a detriment and even a danger to David, so he was willing to go ahead with the marriage.
Michal actually helped her husband David to escape King Saul once Saul’s intentions towards him became homicidal . Rather than a snare, she became David’s salvation.
Perhaps sensing this, the King took Michal away once David was on the run.
44 But Saul had given Michal his daughter, David’s wife, to Palti the son of Laish, who was from Gallim. 1 Samuel 25:44 NKJV
We do not know if David was aware that he had lost his wife, Michal. He seemed to have good information about what was going on with Saul, usually with divine assistance. But once David learned that the fool, Nabal, was dead, he immediately extended an offer of marriage to Nabal’s widow, the wise and desirable Abigail.
42 So Abigail rose in haste and rode on a donkey, attended by five of her maidens; and she followed the messengers of David, and became his wife. 1 Samuel 25:42 NKJV
David was now in position to inherit the kingdom with a wise and loving marriage partner. She would be a tremendous asset to bless him and provide support in every way. Abigail was also in a much better position, as God had taken her foolish and abusive former husband and replaced him with God’s own choice for the kingdom, a man after God’s own heart.
So, we would expect David and his new godly wife, Abigail, to live happily ever after. Unfortunately, David and Abigail’s family life would not play out as hoped. The first sign of trouble is found in the very next verse:
43 David also took Ahinoam of Jezreel, and so both of them were his wives. 1 Samuel 25:43 NKJV
Polygamy is found throughout the Old Testament, but it never leads to a happy and successful family life. In fact, it usually produces disastrous results, and this situation would be no different. God accepted polygamy, and works within it, but it was never His plan for marriage. God’s plan was clearly stated in Genesis, and repeated by Jesus in Matthew 19:5.
24 Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and they shall become one flesh. Genesis 2:24 NKJV
Two become one. Three becomes a catastrophe. God had provided David with a faithful spouse who could have helped him to lead Israel with her godly wisdom. His series of bad choices would severely compromise and negate this blessing.
Thank you, God, for your great love for us, and the many provisions which you have gifted to us. Help us to be content and full of gratitude for what we have, and heal the pain over what we have lost or have not yet experienced.
Provide healing and comfort to those who have lost or are losing a loved one. Be present with them in their mourning. Give them hope and encouragement and help them to move forward towards a better day.
Show us how we can be the hands and feet of Christ to those around us going through loss due to death, divorce or break-up. May You be pleased with both our actions and our motives. Grant us wisdom in this matter. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.