Balaam’s Stubbornness

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Balaam’s Stubbornness

Numbers 22

Numbers 22:6 “A people have come out of Egypt; they cover the face of the land and have settled next to me. Now come and put a curse on these people, because they are too powerful for me. Perhaps then I will be able to defeat them and drive them out of the land. For I know that whoever you bless is blessed, and whoever you curse is cursed.”

Nothing and nobody can thwart God’s plans and purposes.

God had a plan and a purpose for His people. Now, Israel  is  camped  on  the  outskirts  of  Moab  along  the  borders.  Balak, the king of Moab, is concerned because he has heard of Israelites’ victories over their other enemies. Balak has a fear of the unknown and it causes him to act goofy. Do we stereotype people who are different from us? Are they scary to us because we do not understand their customs, language, dress? Deuteronomy 2:9, “Then the LORD said to me, “Do not harass the Moabites or provoke them to war, for I will not give you any part of their land. I have given Ar to the descendants of Lot as a possession.” Balak had nothing to fear – but he did not know that. He responds in a worldly way of solving problems. He contacts Balaam – a renowned diviner – to curse the Israelites. This was the way of the world at the time.

Numbers 22:6 “A people have come out of Egypt; they cover the face of the land and have settled next to me. Now come and put a curse on these people, because they are too powerful for me. Perhaps then I will be able to defeat them and drive them out of the land. For I know that whoever you bless is blessed, and whoever you curse is cursed.” This is Balak’s message to Balaam. It sounds oddly like the blessing Isaac speaks over Jacob in Genesis. Genesis 27:29b, “May those who curse you be cursed and those who bless you be blessed.”

God tells Balaam not to go. Numbers 22:12, “But God said to Balaam, “Do not go with them. You must not put a curse on those people, because they are blessed.” So Balak sends another envoy to Balaam imploring him to come and curse the Israelites. Balaam’s response is the same. Numbers 22:18, “But Balaam answered them, “Even if Balak gave me all the silver and gold in his palace, I could not do anything great or small to go beyond the command of the LORD my God.” From these words we might interpret that Balaam is a “Good Guy”. Far from it.

Joshua 13:22, “In addition to those slain in battle, the Israelites had put to the sword Balaam son of Beor, who practiced divination.

2 Peter 2:15-16, “They have left the straightway and wandered off to  follow  the  way  of  Balaam son  of  Bezer, who loved  the  wages  of  wickedness. But he was rebuked for his wrongdoing by a donkey – an animal without speech – who spoke with a human voice and restrained the prophet’s madness.”

The Lord’s people were the ones who followed Balaam’s advice and enticed the Israelites to be unfaithful to the LORD in the Peor incident, so that a plague struck the LORD’s people. Balaam was used negotiating in the spiritual world. But he could not negotiate with God.

God is angry, and uses the donkey to block Balaam from his journey to Moab. The donkey speaks. And Balaam talks back to him. Talk about crazy!!!

Balaam was more stubborn than a mule. He was blind to the angel even though he has insight into the spiritual world.

God uses His sovereignty over creation to prove His power. Balaam is a professional spiritual manipulator. But that does not work with God.

God cannot be manipulated.

Nothing and nobody can thwart God’s plans and purposes. He is going to win.

Do my plans hit roadblocks? Do I try to negotiate with God? Do I try to rework the Scriptures to align with my plans? Am I stubborn? Are you stubborn? God will not mold His plans to mine.

Lord, please help me to submit to Your plans, will and purposes.

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