What Were You Going to Say?

I don’t think Balaam knew what he was getting into. Yes, Balaam was a popular prophet who seemed to have a more than passing understanding of the God of Israel. Yes, Balak was going to pay him very well to speak against Israel. But, Balaam had never had a relationship with the God whose people he was going to curse.

Thus we find Balaam riding a faithful donkey that has suddenly turned into the most stubborn, untrained animal possible. Three times the donkey refuses to obey and three times Balaam beats the defenseless animal, quite a performance for those travelling with Balaam. Finally, Balaam hears the donkey and sees an angel of God.

Balaam knew about Israel’s God but had never come into the presence of this God. His reaction to the encounter was to repent and offer to go home. God, however, responds in the most astounding way. Balaam, you are now working for me; I will tell you what to say! Four times Balaam will prophesy the word of God.

It is an incredible thing to be in relationship with God, who cajoles, instructs, encourages and walks with us as we share God’s word with our neighbours and the world.

Thank you, God, for encouraging us and putting your word on our lips. Amen. — VSR

Contributed by What Were You Going to Say?

I don't think Balaam knew what he was getting into. Yes, Balaam was a popular prophet who seemed to have a more than passing understanding of the God of Israel. Yes, Balak was going to pay him very well to speak against Israel. But, Balaam had never had a relationship with the God whose people he was going to curse. Thus we find Balaam riding a faithful donkey that has suddenly turned into the most stubborn, untrained animal possible. Three times the donkey refuses to obey and three times Balaam beats the defenseless animal, quite a performance for those travelling with Balaam. Finally, Balaam hears the donkey and sees an angel of God. Balaam knew about Israel's God but had never come into the presence of this God. His reaction to the encounter was to repent and offer to go home. God, however, responds in the most astounding way. Balaam, you are now working for me; I will tell you what to say! Four times Balaam will prophesy the word of God. It is an incredible thing to be in relationship with God, who cajoles, instructs, encourages and walks with us as we share God's word with our neighbours and the world.