Tuesday, December 14, 2010
Num 22:28 And Jehovah opened the mouth of the ass, and she said unto Balaam, What have I done unto thee, that thou hast smitten me these three times?
Num 22:29 And Balaam said unto the ass, Because thou hast mocked me, I would there were a sword in my hand, for now I had killed thee.
Num 22:30 And the ass said unto Balaam, Am not I thine ass, upon which thou hast ridden all thy life long unto this day? was I ever wont to do so unto thee? and he said, Nay.
Num 22:31 Then Jehovah opened the eyes of Balaam, and he saw the angel of Jehovah standing in the way, with his sword drawn in his hand; and he bowed his head, and fell on his face.
In Numbers 22 we find one of the favorite children's stories that is easily taught by most any Children's Teacher. From the story it is easily taught that God is so Omnipotent that He can use a Donkey or a Jackass to speak through or just cause the animal to speak a language understood by men. For our children, if taught properly, this is a great and entertaining lesson about God and the unusual manor in which He is known to work but for the Atheist and New Christian it poses a question that most long term Christians cannot answer even though the answer is clear through the Holy Spirit's teaching and influence.
Num 22:12 And God said unto Balaam, Thou shalt not go with them; thou shalt not curse the people; for they are blessed.
In this verse we see that God has forbidden Balaam to go to Balak for the purpose of cursing the descendants or Israel. Then we see that God gives Balaam permission to go;
Num 22:20 And God came unto Balaam at night, and said unto him, If the men are come to call thee, rise up, go with them; but only the word which I speak unto thee, that shalt thou do.
From here and the opening passage we see what is seen by some as the scriptures contradicting themselves. Now, every Christian can Parrot the proper response to this assertion, “There are no conflicts in, nor does scripture contradict itself,” but there are very few that can defend this position in relation to this passage. When we read the scriptures, unlike the Movies and the One-Eyed Monster, we must think to understand or to perceive the truth of what is being said.
In verse 20 we all pick up that God gave Balaam permission to go with the Princes to Balak but most folks seem to just slide over the important and pertinent portion of this verse, there is a condition added to the permission, Balaam could only say what God would tell him to say. At this point God's Omniscience becomes important. (Psa. 33:13-22, Isa. 40:13,14) Remembering that God does not make mistakes, that God knows what we will do say or, even, think before we do it and then the nature of mankind. Balaam had been offered a fortune for cursing the Israelites and although it is not explained and it is true that I am going to go beyond what scripture states but I'm going to tell you that Balaam got greedy and was thinking of the treasure he would be given for cursing these people.
I might have come to the wrong conclusion but I do have a very close and moment to moment association with the Holy Spirit and I do not feel the correcting hand of the Spirit of God on this matter. God did not disapprove of Balaam going because He had given him permission to go but only to speak what He, God, had for him to say and God did not intend to curse His chosen.
My prayer is not as much that you will use this example as it that you would learn to analyze scripture in the clear light of other scripture and to walk closer to God.