1 And Balaam said unto Balak, Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven oxen and seven rams. 2 And Balak did as Balaam had spoken; and Balak and Balaam offered on every altar a bullock and a ram. 3 And Balaam said unto Balak, Stand by thy burnt offering, and I will go: peradventure the Lord will come to meet me: and whatsoever he sheweth me I will tell thee. And he went to an high place.
4 And God met Balaam: and he said unto him, I have prepared seven altars, and I have offered upon every altar a bullock and a ram. 5 And the Lord put a word in Balaam’s mouth, and said, Return unto Balak, and thus thou shalt speak.
6 And he returned unto him, and, lo, he stood by his burnt sacrifice, he, and all the princes of Moab. 7 And he took up his parable, and said, Balak the king of Moab hath brought me from Aram, out of the mountains of the east, saying, Come, curse me Jacob, and come, defy Israel. 8 How shall I curse, whom God hath not cursed? or how shall I defy, whom the Lord hath not defied? 9 For from the top of the rocks I see him, and from the hills I behold him: lo, the people shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations. 10 Who can count the dust of Jacob, and the number of the fourth part of Israel? Let me die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be like his!
11 And Balak said unto Balaam, What hast thou done unto me? I took thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast blessed them altogether. 12 And he answered and said, Must I not take heed to speak that which the Lord hath put in my mouth?
13 And Balak said unto him, Come, I pray thee, with me unto another place, from whence thou mayest see them: thou shalt see but the utmost part of them, and shalt not see them all: and curse me them from thence. 14 And he brought him into the field of Zophim, to the top of Pisgah, and built seven altars, and offered a bullock and a ram on every altar.
15 And he said unto Balak, Stand here by thy burnt offering, while I meet the Lord yonder. 16 And the Lord met Balaam, and put a word in his mouth, and said, Go again unto Balak, and say thus. 17 And when he came to him, behold, he stood by his burnt offering, and the princes of Moab with him. And Balak said unto him, What hath the Lord spoken?
18 And he took up his parable, and said, Rise up, Balak, and hear; hearken unto me, thou son of Zippor: 19 God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good? 20 Behold, I have received commandment to bless: and he hath blessed; and I cannot reverse it. 21 He hath not beheld iniquity in Jacob, neither hath he seen perverseness in Israel: the Lord his God is with him, and the shout of a king is among them. 22 God brought them out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn. 23 Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob, neither is there any divination against Israel: according to this time it shall be said of Jacob and of Israel, What hath God wrought! 24 Behold, the people shall rise up as a great lion, and lift up himself as a young lion: he shall not lie down until he eat of the prey, and drink the blood of the slain.
25 And Balak said unto Balaam, Neither curse them at all, nor bless them at all. 26 But Balaam answered and said unto Balak, Told not I thee, saying, All that the Lord speaketh, that I must do?
27 And Balak said unto Balaam, Come, I pray thee, I will bring thee unto another place; peradventure it will please God that thou mayest curse me them from thence. 28 And Balak brought Balaam unto the top of Peor, that looketh toward jeshimon.
29 And Balaam said unto Balak, Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven bullocks and seven rams. 30 And Balak did as Balaam had said, and offered a bullock and a ram on every altar.
1 And when Balaam saw that it pleased the Lord to bless Israel, he went not, as at other times, to seek for enchantments, but he set his face toward the wilderness. 2 And Balaam lifted up his eyes, and he saw Israel abiding in his tents according to their tribes; and the spirit of God came upon him. 3 And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor hath said, and the man whose eyes are open hath said:
4 He hath said, which heard the words of God, which saw the vision of the Almighty, falling into a trance, but having his eyes open: 5 How goodly are thy tents, O Jacob, and thy tabernacles, O Israel! 6 As the valleys are they spread forth, as gardens by the river’s side, as the trees of lign aloes which the Lord hath planted, and as cedar trees beside the waters. 7 He shall pour the water out of his buckets, and his seed shall be in many waters, and his king shall be higher than Agag, and his kingdom shall be exalted. 8 God brought him forth out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn: he shall eat up the nations his enemies, and shall break their bones, and pierce them through with his arrows. 9 He couched, he lay down as a lion, and as a great lion: who shall stir him up? Blessed is he that blesseth thee, and cursed is he that curseth thee.
10 And Balak’s anger was kindled against Balaam, and he smote his hands together: and Balak said unto Balaam, I called thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast altogether blessed them these three times. 11 Therefore now flee thou to thy place: I thought to promote thee unto great honour; but, lo, the Lord hath kept thee back from honour.
12 And Balaam said unto Balak, Spake I not also to thy messengers which thou sentest unto me, saying, 13 If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the commandment of the Lord, to do either good or bad of mine own mind; but what the Lord saith, that will I speak? 14 And now, behold, I go unto my people: come therefore, and I will advertise thee what this people shall do to thy people in the latter days.
15 And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor hath said, and the man whose eyes are open hath said: 16 He hath said, which heard the words of God, and knew the knowledge of the most High, which saw the vision of the Almighty, falling into a trance, but having his eyes open: 17 I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth. 18 And Edom shall be a possession, Seir also shall be a possession for his enemies; and Israel shall do valiantly. 19 Out of Jacob shall come he that shall have dominion, and shall destroy him that remaineth of the city.
20 And when he looked on Amalek, he took up his parable, and said, Amalek was the first of the nations; but his latter end shall be that he perish for ever.
21 And he looked on the Kenites, and took up his parable, and said, Strong is thy dwellingplace, and thou puttest thy nest in a rock. 22 Nevertheless the Kenite shall be wasted, until Asshur shall carry thee away captive.
23 And he took up his parable, and said, Alas, who shall live when God doeth this! 24 And ships shall come from the coast of Chittim, and shall afflict Asshur, and shall afflict Eber, and he also shall perish for ever. 25 And Balaam rose up, and went and returned to his place: and Balak also went his way.
When did you last preach the Gospel? What drives and consumes you? Is it the Living Word of God? You in whose lives God has worked should tell others what you’ve seen and heard.
When we were overseas, the people in Scandinavia envied God’s work here and urged us to stay true and faithful to the Lord Jesus Christ! They mourned state of their youth who are only kept in the churches by modern music, but none of their lives are changed. Wherever we went, we found this cry for help.
At another conference they invited KwaSizabantu speakers to address them and asked for the Euro Choir to sing, for they said that “we need such youth as they”. You young people has the future of your country in your hands and can win it for Christ. Your life speaks louder than your mouth. That’s what impresses the people – the lives of our youth. The Lord Jesus loves you and wants to use you. He wants to make you true disciples of Him.
Here in Numbers we read how Moses sent out the twelve spies to search out the land, and bring report again. They saw the richness of the land, but they saw the giants and obstacles too. It is like people who forsakes Egype, serves God, but then they see life’s problems they lose heart. You can maybe testify of the riches He has given you and the precious promises, but what happens when you face difficulties and temptations? There are those that say that when you accept Jesus it is simply a slide to heaven. No, God makes it plain that there will be trials for those who follow Him, but He gives the promise of victory in the face of all obstacles, if we put our trust in Him.
God has chosen you too to search out the land. He expects you to be faithful to Him and bring a good report, that with God victory is sure. Do you report His Word or your own? Are you faithful as Joshua and Caleb or do you murmer as the ten with their evil report? Beware and shun those with an evil report and heart. God has promised to give that rich country to them, yet they still brought up an evil report. How easily are you influenced by the negative attitude of your husband, wife, children, or friends? We are called of God to go from victory unto victory; to be salt, light and an eternal blessing. Whose glory is on your face, Jesus or the devil’s?
In Chapter 14 we read of the result of their negative report. They despised God’s goodness and promises and desired death. They wanted to choose a leader for themselves to lead them back to Egypt. So too, some Christians, when faced with difficulties, e.g. a friendship or sin that needs to be broken, turn back to Egypt rather than obeying God’s Word. Many rejoice and receive Jesus, but because of so-called friendships and love, they forsake God and return to the world. Just take the Bible and read what the result of their evil murmer and rebellion was. The whole congregation, every one of them, over 20, died in the wilderness, except Joshua and Caleb. So God turned them back to wander for forty years in the wilderness. Amazingly, even after that they sinned yet again and went against God’s Word. When they saw their sin and its result, they stood up to “obey God’s previous command” to possess Canaan. How often do we, when we see our sin of disobedience, try to do today what God commanded yesterday. Today His command is different. In stead of falling on their face and asking Moses to intercede to God for their sin they rebell yet again. Delayed obedience is disobedience. We must obey God immediately.
May God give you a heart to obey immediately, no matter how you feel and whether you like it or not. Do not be influenced by those with a negative report about God’s work, but be as Caleb who saw the same difficulties, but obeyed God because God has promised and spoken.