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Numbers Chapter 24 (ESV)
10 And Balak’s anger was kindled against Balaam, and he struck his hands together. And Balak said to Balaam, “I called you to curse my enemies, and behold, you have blessed them these three times. 11 Therefore now flee to your own place. I said, ‘I will certainly honor you,’ but the Lord has held you back from honor.” 12 And Balaam said to Balak, “Did I not tell your messengers whom you sent to me, 13 ‘If Balak should give me his house full of silver and gold, I would not be able to go beyond the word of the Lord, to do either good or bad of my own will. What the Lord speaks, that will I speak’? 14 And now, behold, I am going to my people. Come, I will let you know what this people will do to your people in the latter days.”
15 And he took up his discourse and said,
“The oracle of Balaam the son of Beor,
the oracle of the man whose eye is opened,
16 the oracle of him who hears the words of God,
and knows the knowledge of the Most High,
who sees the vision of the Almighty,
falling down with his eyes uncovered:
17 I see him, but not now;
I behold him, but not near:
a star shall come out of Jacob,
and a scepter shall rise out of Israel;
it shall crush the forehead of Moab
and break down all the sons of Sheth.
18 Edom shall be dispossessed;
Seir also, his enemies, shall be dispossessed.
Israel is doing valiantly.
19 And one from Jacob shall exercise dominion
and destroy the survivors of cities!”
- Continue this chapter on Balak and Balaam.
- A furious Balak refused to pay Balaam. Balaam then uttered additional oracles which portrayed the doom of Israel’s enemies. Looking down the history, remote yet clearly, Balaam saw what God would finally do.
- Balaam used two images to describe what he saw: a star rising from Jacob and a scepter coming from Israel (v17). The star was a representation of light, the scepter a representation of power. Light and power – these two symbols would come to full expression in the life of Jesus Christ. We see this vision in much more detail for we’re in close touch with the gospel representations of Jesus as light and power.
- Do I really see God? Is He just a far-off, distant vision, the way with Balaam, or is He a present encounter? The gospel is concerned not with enlightenment but with encounter. Not with just envisioning the light and power of God in Jesus Christ but with experiencing it. And in experiencing it, be transformed by it.
- Have I had encountering with God lately? Has God’s power been transforming me into the image of Himself? Pray for such encountering and transformation.