So Balak the son of Zippor, who was king of Moab at that time, sent messengers to Balaam the son of Beor at Pethor, which is near the River in the land of the people of Amaw, to call him, saying, “Behold, a people has come out of Egypt. They cover the face of the earth, and they are dwelling opposite me. Come now, curse this people for me, since they are too mighty for me. Perhaps I shall be able to defeat them and drive them from the land, for I know that he whom you bless is blessed, and he whom you curse is cursed.” So the elders of Moab and the elders of Midian departed with the fees for divination in their hand. And they came to Balaam and gave him Balak’s message. – Numbers 22:4b-7 ESV
What an interesting part of scripture. As a matter of Fact, the book of Numbers Chapters 20-25, is important scripture as the Israelites come to the end of their 40-year journey of education, judgement, and sanctification, and are getting ready to enter into the promised land. Numbers Chapter 20 starts with the death of Moses’ sister, Mariam and ends with the death of his brother Aaron. In between, the beginning and the end of this chapter, Moses lost his right to enter into the promised land. Moses crucified Christ a second time, when He was told to only speak to the rock, instead out of anger, Moses struck it twice! But the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, “Because you did not trust me enough to demonstrate my holiness to the people of Israel, you will not lead them into the land I am giving them!” (Numbers 20:12) In this one-chapter Moses lost most things that are near and dear to him; his assistants, who were also his sister and brother, so he lost his family, and he lost his purpose and his outcome. His outcome was to bring the people from Captivity in Egypt to freedom in God, in the Promised Land. Chapter 25 ends with the end of a plague that killed 24,000 people and caused the Israelites to become committed to destroying an entire people who had caused them to move away from Jehovah, Yahweh, their Lord and their Savior, their portion! Hear the Word of the Lord; “Phinehas son of Eleazar and grandson of Aaron the priest has turned my anger away from the Israelites by being as zealous among them as I was. So I stopped destroying all Israel as I had intended to do in my zealous anger. Now tell him that I am making my special covenant of peace with him. In this covenant, I give him and his descendants a permanent right to the priesthood, for in his zeal for me, his God, he purified the people of Israel, making them right with me.” Then the LORD said to Moses, “Attack the Midianites and destroy them, because they assaulted you with deceit and tricked you into worshiping Baal of Peor, and because of Cozbi, the daughter of a Midianite leader, who was killed at the time of the plague because of what happened at Peor.” (Numbers 25:11-13, 16-18)
Leader, in the middle of all this chaos, closure and intense coaching, we hear the story of Balaam, King Balak and a talking donkey. Balaam is one of the most interesting, confusing, and enigmatic characters in the Bible. Enigmatic is something that is unclear or not easy to understand. It refers to a comment, a person’s attitude, or anything that is puzzling, and can therefore not be clearly explained. This definition is appropriate for this character called Balaam. Pastor J. Vernon McGee has this to say about Balaam: “The very interesting thing is that there is more said in Scripture concerning Balaam than there is said about Mary the mother of Jesus. There is more said about him than about ten of the apostles of the Lord all put together. Therefore, the Word of God does give some emphasis to him.” The New Testament mentions him three times – always in connection with apostasy. In three of the apocalyptic messages of the New Testament you will find references to this man. The first is found in 2 Peter 2:15: They have forsaken the right way and gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness. That’s the first statement, a warning concerning the “way of Balaam.” And then Jude, in his little book, in the eleventh verse, says: Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah. Jude warns of the “error of Balaam.” The error of Balaam and the way of Balaam are not the same. Also John in Revelation, when giving the prophetic history of the church, traces the period 2 when the martyr church would stand against the world, then later when the world like a flood would come inside the church. Our Lord’s message to that church is in Revelation 2:14: But I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit sexual immorality. Here we are told about the “doctrine of Balaam.” The doctrine of Balaam is different from the way of Balaam, and it’s different from the error of Balaam. Therefore, in attempting to evaluate this man we need to recognize that these three statements give us a character analysis of Balaam.” God is telling us to pay attention to this character Balaam. He is mentioned in 57 Verses, from 8 Books and the 3 mentions and books in the New Testament are all PROPHETIC!
Conduit; The Error of Balaam, the Way of Balaam and the Doctrine of Balaam have an important lesson to anybody who claims to be a blood bought saint of The Risen King. America is into its own doctrine, it’s own way and it is in error. We live in a time where even America has turned to the World and against God! One of the two political parties in America kicked God out of their platform, and booed God! Atheism is a NEW BELIEF! There was not a single atheist in Balaam’s time. Everybody believed in a God, or God’s- it wasn’t a question of, “IF GOD”, it was a question of “Which God”. Today we are the same. Everybody has a God. For some it is SELF, for some it is GOVERNMENT, for many it is PLEASURE, it is HAPPINESS, it is a SPOUSE, or a FAMILY, or even a RELIGION or CHURCH- it is our GOD! From that god comes our existential beliefs about “THAT WHICH RUNS AND RULES OUR LIVES”. One of the truths about the GOD we follow is that ALL GODS require SACRIFICE! Balaam talked with God, and God spoke to Balaam- just like the Devil talks to God and God talks back, “Where have you come from?” said the LORD to Satan. “From roaming through the earth,” he replied, “and walking back and forth in it.” (Job 1:7) “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat” (Luke 22:31) What separates a child of God from a child of the WORLD is the three things that the Bible mentions about Balaam. “The Way, the Error and the DOCTRINE”. Only when these three are aligned to the God of the Universe, can we be a part of the DOCTRINE of God, and keep our ERROR to a minimum, becoming part of THE WAY! Balaam taught us this, and scripture reminds us: There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death. (Proverbs 14:12, 16:12) You have to be smarter than a donkey. God can open the mouths of anything or anybody– if you are willing! Jesus told us that HE IS THE WAY, the TRUTH, and the LIFE! Nobody comes to God the Father as ABBA, as friend- unless they pass through the CROSS OF CHRIST and get bathed in the BLOOD OF THE LAMB! That is the only WAY, there is NO ERROR, and it is the only DOCTRINE THAT SAVES!