Today’s Journey Through Scripture Readings:
Numbers 23-25; Mark 7:14-37
10 Balak was angry with Balaam. He pounded his fists. Balak said to Balaam, “I summoned you to curse my enemies, but now you’ve given a blessing these three times. 11 Now get out of here and go home. I told you I’d greatly honor you, but the Lord has denied you any honor.”
12 Balaam said to Balak, “Didn’t I tell your messengers, whom you sent to me, 13 ‘If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I wouldn’t be able to break the Lord’s command for good or ill by my own will. I’ll say whatever the Lord says’? 14 So now I’m going to my people. Let me advise you what this people will do to your people in the days to come” (Numbers 24:10-14, Common English Bible).
I told you yesterday the story of Balaam and his donkey was one of my favorite stories in Scripture. I find it really funny. And, also telling. We too often abuse those who are trying to help us most.
In today’s blog lesson things are pretty serious for old Balaam. Balak had been working hard to get Balaam to Moab. The King of Moab, Balak, wanted Balaam to place a curse on the Israelites who were advancing on Moab, the king feared that Israel would move in and overwhelm the Moabite army. Balak takes Balaam three different times to have him place a curse on Israel. Each time, Balaam warns Balak that he can only do that which God commands him. Balak keeps asking for a curse and Balaam ends up sending them a blessing. Of course, that is not at all what Balak wanted. He wanted help to push the Israelites back.
For his part, from the very beginning, Balaam has said it has to be God’s way. It is difficult to understand why Balak would become angry. What he was asking for, after all, was to go against the will of God. When Balaam couldn’t deliver the goods a different way.
Yes, especially after the third time Balaam has attended to get cursing action from Peter. That wasn’t what Balak had in mind. But, then again, Balak was not the guy at the wheel, God was.
For his part, Balak worked hard in an effort to defeat the Israelites. Just days before our last school shooting, more people bought guns. The public outcry for a common sense approach until it can be acted upon by Congress
God is here and God is love. God provides for us and there is nothing about more we should expect.
When we think of the Sacraments we say we feast on the body and blood of Christ, helping us to better navigate the world around us. It is Jesus’ presence with us that helps us to maintain.
When we come to the table we come to receive something that was so precious to God. It is God’s giving, even to people like you and me.
We also say that God is the primary actor in Baptism. Whether a baby or a full-grown adult with the ability to orchestrate all these things. We may stand in the water, I may read aloud the words. God does the baptism.
God is here. God is leading us. God is at work. God is in charge. Anything else will always fall short.
Have a blessed day in the Lord.
With Joy and Thankfulness,
Copyright 2018, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved