89. Don't follow the ways of Balaam

As you've seen over the past few weeks, King Balak of Moab was scared of the Israelites and what they might do to his country and his position in particular. He wanted them cursed and as we've seen, he asked Balaam to do it. Balaam did follow the lure of money and tried to persuade God that he can curse the Israelites, but God said no. He wanted to bless them and therefore no one should curse them.

Now King Balak tried to entice Balaam to curse them from three different viewpoints, but every time Balaam blessed them. King Balak was so angry and told Balaam to go home without a cent in reward. Balaam gave up riches and did the right thing. He allowed himself to be a vessel of God and didn't let the lure of wealth deter him.

And today you must also know, that when you stand up for the right thing, it might not be the most popular choice. It might cost you promotions, it might cost you friends, it might cost you advances in the short run, but at the end of the day, God is pleased with you. We need to stand up for what is right. As a Christian it is not a choice we have, it is something we have to do, in every part of our lives no matter how hard. We need to be honest with our tax return, we need to abide by the rules even though everyone else is breaking it, we need to pay our bills on time, we shouldn't flirt with our married colleague, we shouldn't swear at the taxi in front of us, etcetera etcetera. I think you get the point. We need to take a stand for what is right and we shouldn't get tired of doing it like Balaam did.

Now let's get back to Balaam. Up and until here it would seem as if Balaam was now converted and following God's ways, in other words, doing the right thing. But later in God's Word we read of the sly plan Balaam came up with later on. Balaam realized that God won't allow him to curse the Israelites, but he still wanted the wealth promised to him. He then came up with an ingenious plan to show Balak how to turn the Israelites against the ways of the Lord.

"You tolerate some among you who are like Balaam, who showed Balak how to trip up the people of Israel. He taught them to worship idols by eating food offered to idols and by committing sexual sin." Revelation 2:14

Balaam was very clever. He knew that if he could get the people to rebel against God's ways that God would need to discipline them and that they in turn would lose the land promised to them. And it was the love of money that caused him to ignore the commands of the Lord:

"They have wandered off the right road and followed the way of Balaam son of Beor, who loved to earn money by doing wrong." 2 Peter 2:15

"Like Balaam, they would do anything for money." Jude 1:11

Don't be like Balaam. Don't compromise and fall for the lust of money. Don't follow the right ways of God for a while and then slip back into your old ways. It is detrimental to your relationship with God. Don't allow anything to come between you and God, especially the lure of money. Your relationship with God is worth more than all the gold and treasures of the world. Nothing can buy it and nothing can replace it. The world today follow the ways of Balaam, it is prevalent to see. Don't fall in line and do the same. You will lose much more than you gain. Balaam lost his life at the end of the day in battle with the Israelites, not long after his 'ingenious plan' (Numbers 31:8). I think if he knew that his life would end that way, he would not have pursued his greed. Let that be a lesson to all of us.

Father, please help us to stay away from the lure of money. Please forgive us if we fall for it now and again, but rather help us to stay pure and to stay on Your path. In Jesus Name. Amen

1 comment for “89. Don't follow the ways of Balaam”

  1. Gravatar of MariMari
    Posted Friday, 30 May 2014 at 8:02:50 PM

    Amen!!! Dis wanneer ons ons fokus begin verloor. Baien mooi verduidelik, Ilze

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