289. The Error of Balaam PART TWO

This issue looks at The Error of Balaam PART TWO.

SINCE YOU ASKED
The previous issue outlined the account of Balaam whose love for money proved to be his undoing. We briefly touched on one of the most amazing accounts in the entire Bible-a talking donkey. Actually, it’s only one of many times God would use a jackass to accomplish His will, but that’s another story. It shows that God can and will use anything if He so chooses. If He can create the universe out of nothing, bring life to the dead, cause the sun not to go down for 24 hours, he can certainly cause a donkey to talk. What is just as amazing is that Balaam talked back to his usually trusty steed as though they conversed all the time.
 
The subject of this article, however, is not a talking donkey. It is a small but profound part of Balaam’s first proclamation regarding Jacob (Israel). After refusing to curse what God had not cursed, he said,
 
“…Behold, a people who dwells apart, and shall not be reckoned among the nations” (Numbers 23:9).
 
AS I SEE IT
Does this describe Israel today or what? Just look at the U.N.’s dealings with Israel. More that at any other time in my lifetime, the world is marginalizing and delegitimizing Israel. It is trying to make decisions regarding Israel’s wellbeing without Israel’s input. Israel indeed, represents a people who dwell apart, and are not reckoned among the nations.
 
The point, however, is not that the world hates Israel. It is that God predicted it over 3500 years ago and has allowed it to happen. This prophecy is yet another reminder that everything is happening according to God’s preordained will and on His preordained schedule. Since the world seems to be coming apart at the seams, we need to be reminded of this often. We need to take a deep breath and recommit everything in our lives to God and His will for us.
 
The same holds true for Israel. Consider what Balaam said in his final prophecy concerning Jacob:
 
…He [God] shall devour the nations who are his adversaries, and shall crush their bones in pieces, and shatter them with his [Israel’s] arrows (Numbers 24:8).
 
Not only are we told what God will do to Israel’s enemies, but we are told how He will do it. He will use Israel’s military. Every modern war Israel has fought is full of examples of how God has worked miracles through Israel’s military. It looks like God will have more opportunities to work in the very near future. Israel must remember God’s prophecies and His faithfulness. So must we.¬†

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ON THE LIGHTER SIDE
Why do they call thin people skinny? Fat people have a lot more skin. You’d think they’d call them skinny.


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