Summary: The story of Balaam teaches us the need to watch our motivation and our attitude in seeking God's will. God will speak, but we must be ready to listen and obey Him.
What does God want me to do? This is a question we all wrestles with. If not yet, then sometime in the future.
• It’s not always easy to know God’s will in a particular situation. KNOWING GOD’S WILL is the subject we’re discussing through in our DG for these 2 weeks.
• God wants to GUIDE us, that’s a given. So we are going to learn some practical steps in knowing God’s will.
A prophet was put through a decision-making situation in Numbers 22.
• We can learn some principles in our attempt to know what God wants us to do.
[Read Num 22:1-35]
Israel was on the way to Canaan and came to the plains of Moab. The King of Moab, Balak was concerned because he has heard how Israel defeated the other nations.
• So he came up with a plan - hire a prophet and ask him to pronounce a curse on these people, so that he stand a better chance at defeating them in battle.
• Balak sends messengers out and they found Balaam, who was probably a well-known prophet because Balak says in 22:6, “For I know that those you bless are blessed, and those you curse are cursed.”
Having read the whole account, I find Balaam’s character questionable; I doubt he is a godly prophet.
• Some scholars preferred to call him a soothsayer; more like a fortune-teller trying to earn his wages.
• But one thing is certain – God speaks to him and he hears from God.
We see two kinds of people here - the Balak-kind, who is out to do his own will and wants God to help him.
• Balak does not know God and is not interested in knowing Him. All he cares about is to get his will done, even at a price. He will make use of God to fulfil his agenda.
• Sound familiar? I’ve heard it many times. It’s all about how God will serve their needs. He was motivated by self-gain.
There are the Balaam-kind of people. He knows God and heard from Him, and yet wanted to have something else for himself.
• He wants God and he wants the world. He loves God, but he also loves what the world can give him.
• James says a double-minded man is unstable in all he does. (James 1:8)
Balaam was tempted because the messengers brought with them a fee for divination (2:7).
• This is significant in the story. There is a bait that is influencing his decision. 2 Pet 2:15 mentions that Balaam “loved the wages of wickedness”.
• And likely, with that, also his desire for reputation and prestige.
In seeking God’s will, WATCH OUR MOTIVATION.
• There will be times when our will does not sync with God’s will. Be truthful but sincere is seeking God’s help to submit to His will.
• What are we going after? What really drives us to do the things we are doing today? Are we seeking what God wants, or WHAT WE WANT but disguised as what God wants?
There was this letter written by a father who wanted to apologize to a certain
young man for not allowing him to marry his daughter.
I have been unable to sleep since I broke off your engagement to my daughter. Will you please forgive and forget?
I was much too sensitive about your tattoos and pierced nose. I now realize
motorcycles aren’t really that dangerous, and I really should not have reacted that way to the way you dress. I’ve been very insensitive and backward.
I am sorry. I know for sure you will make a good son-in-law. I have now come to my
senses and you have my full blessing to marry my daughter.
Your future father-in-law.
P.S. Congratulations on winning the lottery!
What’s motivating you? Let God and His will drives you!
Balaam actually started well. He asked the men to stay the night so that he could seek God for an answer.
• This is the good part. Many of us fail right here – we don’t even ask God. We look at the perks and we decide what we want.
• Balaam asked God and the answer came back loud and clear. “No, don’t go with them. You must not put a curse on them because they are blessed.” (22:12)
That’s simple enough. That’s not hard to understand.
• The next morning he tells them: “Go back to your own country...” and the reason? “The LORD has refused to let me go with you.”
• He left out the important part – “I cannot curse them because they are blessed. It’s a definite NO, NO. It is not God’s will.”
He did not say that. Do you notice that he did not say it at all throughout the many times met Balak and his men, from Num 22-25?