Book: Christian Conflict Resolution

Christian conflict resolution

This Bible story of David, Nabal, and Abigail in 1 Samuel 25:2-38 teaches us how to resolve conflicts.

Nabal was a harsh, evil, and rich man who had 3000 sheep and 1000 goats. His wife Abigail was a beautiful woman of good understanding.

David and his men protected Nabal’s shepherds and one feast day David sent messengers to ask Nabal for food. Nabal was very rude to David’s envoys and this angered David so much that he armed 400 men and set off for Nabal’s homestead to kill all his men.

Abigail was told of how her husband had reviled David and repaid him evil for the good he had done to her shepherds. She was also informed that her household was in danger because of her husband. She acted quickly and loaded donkeys with food and wine and set off to see David.

While on her way, she met him and his men approaching her homestead. She spoke to David and resolved the conflict between him and her husband and in so doing, saved her family and homestead.   


How to resolve conflicts biblically

Abigail can teach us the following principles of Christian conflict resolution:

1. Prepare For It

Preparing will help you resolve your conflicts faster and enable you to leave the negotiation table more content. 

To help you decide what you want to achieve from the conflict resolution process write down the following:
A. All your interests which are threatened by the conflict in order of importance.

B. How you want the conflict to be resolved.

C. What you are willing to concede as you compromise to reach a solution.

D. What you want to retain as you negotiate to reach a solution.

Abigail could have prepared for meeting David by writing down the following:
A. All your interests which are threatened by the conflict in order of importance.
Abigail’s interests which were threatened by the conflict between her husband Nabal and David were the lives of all the men in her family and household for David said to Abigail: “… Surely by morning light no males would have been left to Nabal!” (1 Samuel 25:34)

B. How you want the conflict to be resolved.
Abigail wanted the conflict to be resolved and the men’s lives spared for she said to David, “That this will be of no grief to you, nor offense of heart to my lord, either that you have shed blood without cause, or that my lord has avenged himself.” (1 Samuel 25:31)

C. What you are willing to concede as you compromise to reach a solution.
In order to compromise and reach a solution, Abigail was willing to “trade off” some things for she Took 200 loaves of bread, 2 skins of wine, 5 sheep already dressed, 5 seahs of roasted grain, 100 clusters of raisins, and 200 cakes of figs, and loaded them on donkeys (1 Samuel 25:18) to take them to David.

D. What you want to retain as you negotiate to reach a solution.

As she compromised, Abigail wanted to retain the lives of the men of her household and business as evidenced by her words (see B above).

This blog post is an excerpt of the book Christian conflict resolution.










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