Dumber than a Donkey

SDA JournalDevotional


Scripture: (Num 22:18-19 NKJV)  Then Balaam answered and said to the servants of Balak, “Though Balak were to give me his house full of silver and gold, I could not go beyond the word of the LORD my God, to do less or more. {19} “Now therefore, please, you also stay here tonight, that I may know what more the LORD will say to me.”

Observation: Balak entices Balaam to come curse Israel, his enemies.  At first it seems as if Balaam, a prophet of God, does what the Lord tells him, but it appears that the possibility of enriching himself makes Balaam bend the rules and ignore God’s will.  Peter writes: (2 Pet 2:15-16 NKJV)  They have forsaken the right way and gone astray, following the way of Balaam the son of Beor, who loved the wages of unrighteousness; {16} but he was rebuked for his iniquity: a dumb donkey speaking with a man’s voice restrained the madness of the prophet.
     Jude adds: (Jude 1:11 NKJV)  Woe to them! For they have gone in the way of Cain, have run greedily in the error of Balaam for profit, and perished in the rebellion of Korah.
     And John in Revelation adds even more: (Rev 2:14 NKJV)  “But I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the children of Israel, to eat things sacrificed to idols, and to commit sexual immorality.
     From our story for today and these three texts we can conclude several things about Balaam:
1. Even though God had already told him not to go, he went back to God as if to double-check His will.  If God already stated His will, why try to change it?
2. He told Balak’s delegations he wouldn’t go, but still asked them to stay around a little until he consulted with God.  He allowed temptation to become sin.
3. He was more interested in riches than in doing God’s will.  We can’t serve God and mammon.
4. Greed leads to rebellion.
5. He put a stumbling block for the Israelites on the way to the promised land (Numbers 31), so that even though God prophesied and pronounced a blessing through him, he still disregarded it in order to enrich himself.
6. His sins included greed, but also leading the Israelites to worship idols and to commit sexual immorality.  These three are the most typical sins of our time.

Application: As heads of our household, we must be careful not to follow the steps of Balaam.  Here’s what I mean:
1. Whenever we become aware of God’s will, we must follow it.
2. Do not allow love for the things of this world (money, house, boat, retirement, etc.) or the pursuit of them, become the guiding principle while abandoning the pursuit of the will of God.
3. Don’t let temptation linger or it will become sin.
4. Not only should we not take the steps that lead to sin and death, but we must watch that we don’t lead others or place in the path of others – i.e. our family – anything that may lead them to sin.
5. We must protect our family from the same three sins of Balaam – greed, idolatry, and sexual immorality.

A Prayer You May Say: Father, thank You for reminding us through the story of Balaam than when we allow temptation to lead away from You we are dumber than a donkey.  Help us to be wise and to protect our family from certain harm, danger, and death.

Used by permission of Adventist Family Ministries, North American Division of Seventh-day Adventists.



Please login to start chatting. Don't have an account? Click here to register.