Balaam (Part 12) - (Num 23:21-30) - Balaam's Second Attempt to Curse Israel ContinuedSubmitted by Pastor Chad Wagner on Wednesday, December 16, 2015.
Image from bemel.com. For a master copy of the outline, click here: The Story of Balaam To Listen on YouTube, click here: Balaam (Part 12) - (Num 23:21-30) - Balaam's Second Attempt to Curse Israel Continued C. Balaam then says that God has not beheld iniquity in Israel and that God is with them (Num 23:21). i. The reason that God has not beheld iniquity in Israel is because He had blotted out their sins (Isa 44:22; Mic 7:18-20). ii. Balaam says that God was with Israel (Num 23:21), and if God was with them, then who could be against them? (Rom 8:31,37) iii. Balaam is definitely not helping Balak's cause. D. Balaam then says that God brought them out of Egypt and that He is as strong as a unicorn (Num 23:22 c/w Num 24:8). i. It is significant that Balaam declares that God brought Israel out of Egypt. a. Egypt was the most powerful empire in the world at that time and God by His mighty power delivered Israel from them and destroyed them. b. If God delivered Israel from Egypt, He could certainly deliver them from Moab, his washpot (Psa 108:9). ii. Balaam says that God has the strength of a unicorn. a. Unicorn - I. 1. A fabulous and legendary animal usually regarded as having the body of a horse with a single horn projecting from its forehead (cf. 2 note); the monoceros of the ancients. The unicorn has at various times been identified or confused with the rhinoceros, with various species of antelope, or with other animals having a horn (or horns) or horn-like projection from the head. II. 7. The one-horned rhinoceros. (Oxford English Dictionary) b. Unicorn - 1. An animal with one horn; the monoceros. This name is often applied to the rhinoceros. (Webster's 1828) c. Unicorns are a symbol of strength in the scriptures (Job 39:9-11). d. God is mighty in strength (Job 36:5). iii. Balak is definitely not liking what he is hearing. E. Balaam then says that there is no enchantment or divination against Israel (Num 23:23). i. God forbids divination and enchantment (Deu 18:10). a. How much more so when it is used against His people! b. Offering Balaam a reward for divination was therefore a waste of Balak's money (Num 22:7). ii. Balaam prophesied that men would say of Israel, What hath God wrought! (Num 23:23). a. How true this was. b. People have been praising God for delivering Israel out the hands of the Egyptians and their other enemies for thousands of years (Psa 44:1-3). F. Balaam concludes his second attempt at cursing Israel by saying that Israel shall destroy its enemies (Num 23:24). i. If it wasn't bad enough already that Balaam prophesied that he was to bless Israel, that God has beheld no sin in Israel, that God had delivered Israel from Egypt, that God will allow no divination nor enchantment against Israel, and that God will again deliver Israel, now Balak hears that Israel will devour its enemies like a lion. ii. Balak has fallen into the pit that he dug (Psa 7:11-16; Psa 57:6), the stone that he intended to roll over Israel has rolled back over him (Pro 26:27), and his foot is caught in the net that he set (Psa 9:15-16). G. Balak is now frustrated since Balaam has blessed Israel twice, so he tells him to neither curse nor bless Israel at all (Num 23:25). i. Balak figures that it's better for Balaam to say nothing because every time he opens his mouth he ends up blessing his enemies. ii. Being a typical wicked man, Balak doesn't want to see others blessed. H. Balaam responds with his favorite cop out, saying that he has to do whatever God says (Num 23:26). i. Balaam has tried to go against God's commandment three times so far. ii. When his efforts to disobey God fail and he comes under fire from his benefactor, he then blames his poor performance on his supposed obedience to God. iii. Balaam is guilty of what Israel was many years later: "for with their mouth they shew much love, but their heart goeth after their covetousness." (Eze 33:31). iv. Balaam draws nigh to God with his mouth, but his heart is far from Him (Mat 15:8). v. Balaam professes that he knows God, but in his works he denies Him (Tit 1:16). vi. He has the form of godliness, but denies the power thereof (2Ti 3:5). XI. Num 23:27 - 24:13 - Balaam's third attempt to curse Israel 1. Balak brings Balaam to another place with hopes that God might allow Balaam to curse Israel from there (Num 23:27-28). A. Balak is showing himself to be of an unsound mind, repeating the same experiment and expecting different results. B. Furthermore, Balak had just been told that Israel was going to destroy their enemies (Num 23:24). C. Instead of being wise and departing from evil, Balak rages and is confident (Pro 14:16). D. This is clear evidence of what the Bible teaches about the natural men -- there is madness in their heart while they live (Ecc 9:3). E. Being a heathen, Balak may have subscribed to the idea of "third time's a charm." 2. Balaam tells Balak to do exactly as he had done twice before and build him seven altars and offer seven bullocks and seven rams on them, which he did (Num 23:29-30). A. Balaam is clearly a man who believes in tradition. B. The traditions of men make the word of God of none effect (Mar 7:9,13). C. Balaam is still convinced that offering sacrifices to God will make Him change His mind. D. He still hasn't learned that the sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to God (Pro 15:8). E. The Lord desires obedience, not sacrifice (1Sa 15:22).