Before posting another Hughes summary, I wanted to draw your attention to a couple of excellent posts from The Vossed World. If you ever wanted to understand the Redemptive-Historical significance of the story of Abigail, then you should read these posts carefully. They are not short, but they are great examples of how we should be reading our Old Testament and the "stories" that it contains. So often we reduce our understanding of the "characters" and situations of the the Old Testament Scripture to a glorified Christian "Aesop's Fables". We fail to recognize the real significance of what is happening. If all the Scripture testifies of Christ (and Jesus, as well as the NT writers, tells us that it does), then to fail to grasp the true meaning of OT passages is to miss the glory of Christ.
In light of Jesus' words and the testimony of the NT, it still amazes me that people read (and preachers preach) so many of these OT stories as if the main point is to challenge us to follow someone's example (or not). I get so tired of hearing preachers and psuedo-scholars on "Christian" radio explain the story of David and Goliath simply as our example to exercise faith: Be like David!! You need to exercise faith like David in order to fight against the "goliaths" in your life! Ughh!! Is that really what the story of David and Goliath is about? Did God spend so many centuries and use so many people and events simply to give us examples of how we're to live our lives? Didn't He have anything better to do than spend all that time and energy simply to show us what faith looks like...or courage...or friendship...or...? He could have simply had Moses write a fable of short stories to pass down and be done with it (which is what many unbelievers think of the OT anyway). He certainly didn't need to go through the extravagance (and misery) of thousands of years worth of human existence to teach us Morality! Yet this is precisely how the majority of Christians read their Old Testaments. Didn't God have something a little more important in mind?
Yes! Jesus tells us this Himself. He came to FULFILL the Scripture--all of it! The NT writers agree with Christ and spent their time and energy not encouraging the people to be like David, or Abraham, or ...; but rather, they spent their time explaining Christ from the Scripture. And that's because the purpose of God from the foundation of the world was the redemption of His creation in Christ. From the very beginning, the portrait of the Messiah has been painted. With ever greater clarity in suceeding generations, the portrait of Christ and His work was revealed. The OT is the "Story" of redemptive history as it looked to and prophesied of the coming One, the promised Seed of the Woman, who will come and recover what was lost in The Fall. The OT is the record of God's progress in working out His promise in the garden of a Seed to recover Sacred Space; and the Gospels and NT writings are the record of the fulfillment of God's promise in the Person and Work of Jesus Christ.
God's purpose from the beginning was the "summing up of all things in Christ" with the establishment of His Kingdom--and that has been accomplished now in Christ. All that awaits is the consummation of all things at the return of Christ when the created order itself will be redeemed and we, in our glorified bodies, enter into the "Shalomic" Shabbat of God's Rest. The OT is so much more than a glorified "Aesop's Fables"; it's the "story" of Christ...who He is and what He came to do.
Sorry. This was only going to be a short introduction to a couple of examples that show us how we should be reading our OT; but when I jump on my soapbox it is sometimes difficult to get me off of it. The "story" of Abigail is interesting on a number of levels and Chad over at The Vossed World has really done us a service in explaining how this passage of Scripture adds to the portrait of Christ. The "moralism" that pervades so much of the preaching and teaching within the church is especially confounded in the story of Abigail (as in Rahab), which you will see.
God had something bigger and better to do than simply to give us morality lessons. He was painting the portrait of Christ. Read these posts as an example of how we are to understand God's work in redemptive history.
BTW--I've also included a link for the second of Culver's "Sermon on the Mount" notes here.