Archive for the ‘Balaam’ Category

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Today, focus is on admonition, covetousness, and the range of sacred operations required to oppose sin.  Correctly understood, the living, and the things of the material and natural world have been created to express and serve the will of the Creator, not merely their own self-will.  It should not be disturbing or surprising, then, that the immortal, invisible Creator of heaven and earth might use animals, angels, the sun, moon, and stars to communicate and intercede with his own finite created beings and living creatures.  What should be thought startling and strange is that the hearts and minds of many are blinded by the flesh and the world so that they can not receive the plain guidance, instruction, warnings and testimonies from the Bible, or shared by those endowed with faith through Jesus Christ.  In the account of Balaam, who was spoken to by an ass, the seer himself regularly experienced unusual events, and often was relied on as the one to give counsel to others when they were challenged and confused by strange occurrences.  The ass had to speak to counter Balaam’s hardness of heart.  Similarly, discernment and sacred knowledge are bestowed on the apostles, prophets, mature believers, and the disciples of Jesus Christ to enable their correct response to the active presence who is GOD.  Consider again the following:  Hebrews 5:  12-14, King James Version (KJV):  12 For when for the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need that one teach you again which be the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of strong meat.  13 For every one that useth milk is unskilful in the word of righteousness:  for he is a babe.  14 But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.  One of the fighters at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Anonymous” (no profile information appears) posted the following:

 

Christian. Is the commandment to not covet your neighbour’s donkey referring to one of those magical talking donkeys that you all believe in?

Because I must admit, those are some pretty good donkeys!

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And the LORD opened the mouth of the ass, and she said unto Balaam, What have I done unto thee, that thou hast smitten me these three times?  And Balaam said unto the ass, Because thou hast mocked me:  I would there were a sword in mine hand, for now would I kill thee.  And the ass said unto Balaam, Am not I thine ass, upon which thou hast ridden ever since I was thine unto this day? was I ever wont to do so unto thee? and he said, Nay.  Then the LORD opened the eyes of Balaam, and he saw the angel of the LORD standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand:  and he bowed down his head, and fell flat on his face.  And the angel of the LORD said unto him, Wherefore hast thou smitten thine ass these three times? behold, I went out to withstand thee, because thy way is perverse before me:  And the ass saw me, and turned from me these three times:  unless she had turned from me, surely now also I had slain thee, and saved her alive.  And Balaam said unto the angel of the LORD, I have sinned; for I knew not that thou stoodest in the way against me:  now therefore, if it displease thee, I will get me back again.  And the angel of the LORD said unto Balaam, Go with the men:  but only the word that I shall speak unto thee, that thou shalt speak. So Balaam went with the princes of Balak.  And when Balak heard that Balaam was come, he went out to meet him unto a city of Moab, which is in the border of Arnon, which is in the utmost coast.  And Balak said unto Balaam, Did I not earnestly send unto thee to call thee? wherefore camest thou not unto me? am I not able indeed to promote thee to honour?  And Balaam said unto Balak, Lo, I am come unto thee:  have I now any power at all to say any thing? the word that God putteth in my mouth, that shall I speak.  (Number 22:  28-38, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Divinity Appears Using Form (07/26/2017); The Sin of Witchcraft? (01/24/2017); When the Donkey Speaks? (11/03/2016); On Really Seeing Angels (10/09/2016); Getting It Right About Angels (05/10/2015); Harden Not Your Hearts? (09/08/2014);Why Believers Fear (09/09/2014); Hardness of Heart? (11/24/2013); Prayer on Behalf of Others? (11/25/2013); Balaam (10/15/2013); About Sabbath (10/16/2013)

 

“Anonymous”, none of the many sacred operations carried out by GOD to cleanse, defend, heal, and maintain ongoing relationships with the living involve “magic”.  Establishing godliness within created beings and living creatures now demand such elements as acquiring sacred knowledge, forgiveness, growth, completing mortality (death), rebirth, resurrection, ripening for harvest, and sanctification.  The Spirit of GOD that put forth heaven, the earth, and Creation continues to gradually introduce permanent changes in the spirit content of sinners that include multiple subtleties (i.e., barely visible differences; sudden shifts in meaning, quality, and value), and that remain unseen to those who lack discernment.

Many fail to grasp that covetousness only appears as a transgression of divine law (we say, sin).  All sin opposes the continued existence of sacred law, the Law Giver, and divine order throughout the spheres of life.  It has not been a divine intent or eternal purpose that the living exist with their consciousness and self-will dominated by sin, and responding to an uninterrupted stream of desire.  Sin promotes destruction, nonexistence, and a return to the conditions in place before the founding of heaven and earth.  Even so, the living often accept sin as natural, normal, and in no way contrary to their own character and makeup.

In the same way divine law has been provided for guidance and instruction against sin, the account of the “talking donkey” is supplied for those who are immersed in carnal, material, secular and social realities.  Balaam was a genuine  seer (in the Bible, the early name for a prophet).  In addition to genuine prophecy from GOD that may have included visitations by angels, Balaam also may have indulged the occult through ignorance, innocence, and exaggerated pride.  Thus, a very graphic and strong warning had to be made against the self-will of Balaam and how he might support the enemies of Moses.  (Ask yourself:  Where my own self-will would be directed against the sovereign will of GOD, would it be enough for me to be answered on the Internet by a stranger (some jackass) answering in faith and love to Jesus Christ, or would I need something “extreme”, magical, and occult to be admonished and corrected by GOD?  Would GOD have to use with me what he uses for those having hardened minds and hearts?)

There is far more to be said, correctly examined, and spiritually apprehended.  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Today, focus is upon divine authority, obedience, prophecy, and the holy writings.  Accounts from the Bible all are intended to reveal the character, nature and substance of divinity.  The holy writings therefore include genealogy, epistles, chronicles and secular history, parables, proclamations, promises, and prophecy.  Stories where animals speak and give instruction (fables) generally are intended for amusement and entertainment; and fables rarely impart the Holy Spirit as do documents of faith, and the Scriptures.  The donkey who spoke saved the life of a man three times in the same day.  In contrast to the Prophet Moses, the figure of Balaam is introduced as a seer (we also say, an earlier form, a visionary, and “the old man”), a false prophet, and a presentation (i.e., symbolic type) of Satan.  Denied authority and privilege to directly attack, curse, or destroy Israel, Balaam operates as a deceiver and one who encourages their self-destruction through fornication, idolatry, presumption, and pride.  The new writer at “Yahoo! Answers” using the ID “Elo” (Level 1 with 95 points, a member since November 02, 2016) posted the following:

 

Where in the old testament does a donkey speak to her master?

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  And the angel of the LORD went further, and stood in a narrow place, where was no way to turn either to the right hand or to the left.  And when the ass saw the angel of the LORD, she fell down under Balaam:  and Balaam’s anger was kindled, and he smote the ass with a staff.  And the LORD opened the mouth of the ass, and she said unto Balaam, What have I done unto thee, that thou hast smitten me these three times?  And Balaam said unto the ass, Because thou hast mocked me:  I would there were a sword in mine hand, for now would I kill thee.  And the ass said unto Balaam, Am not I thine ass, upon which thou hast ridden ever since I was thine unto this day? was I ever wont to do so unto thee? and he said, Nay.  Then the LORD opened the eyes of Balaam, and he saw the angel of the LORD standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand:  and he bowed down his head, and fell flat on his face.  And the angel of the LORD said unto him, Wherefore hast thou smitten thine ass these three times? behold, I went out to withstand thee, because thy way is perverse before me:  And the ass saw me, and turned from me these three times:  unless she had turned from me, surely now also I had slain thee, and saved her alive.  And Balaam said unto the angel of the LORD, I have sinned; for I knew not that thou stoodest in the way against me:  now therefore, if it displease thee, I will get me back again.  And the angel of the LORD said unto Balaam, Go with the men:  but only the word that I shall speak unto thee, that thou shalt speak. So Balaam went with the princes of Balak.  (Numbers 22:  26-35, King James Version, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Malachi (01/02/2015); Why Prophets Were Sent to Israel (11/23/2014); The Need for Prophecy Then and Now (11/24/2014); A Curse Removed (12/26/2013); Intercession (12/27/2013); Balaam (10/15/2013); About Sabbath (10/16/2013); Utterance is Spirit (09/08/2013); A Start for the Idea of GOD? (09/09/2013)

 

“Elo”, in the 4th Book of Moses called “Numbers” (see chapters 22-25) there is an account of opposition against divine authority through law, covenant relationship, prophecy, and shared sacred purpose.  Mature Christian believers understand from this account that Balaam the son of Beor was a seer (a person who experienced paranormal visions, practiced shamanism, and was believed able to intercede for humanity with good and evil spirits).  Having heard reports of the judgment by GOD against Egypt on behalf of the sons of Jacob (to whom they were in kinship), and unwilling to risk the destruction of his army, the king of Moab wanted Balaam to discourage, disperse, and repel the Israelites.  Balaam was recruited to pronounce a curse upon their camp.  However, before that time, Balaam also had been used by the true GOD as a spokesperson (we say, prophet).

Men were repeatedly sent from the king who, like the serpent that beguiled Eve, were arrayed in splendor, and appealed to Balaam’s weaknesses (i.e., ambition, human covetousness, desire, exaggerated pride, self-will).  Finally GOD allowed Balaam to go with the messengers to Moab; however, he was to speak only what GOD would put in his mouth.  As further admonition, and example, and warning to Balaam, the path for their journeying became increasingly difficult.  When his jackass (we say, donkey) balked, he began to beat her with a prod.  Finally, the animal halted and would go no further, because she could see that the path was forbidden:  An angel from GOD was standing there with his sword in readiness to  strike.  When the man, seeing nothing there, began to beat her in “road rage”, GOD allowed the animal to speak what divinity would put in her mouth.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually apprehended, here.  For example, as with the first pair (Adam and Eve), to be properly prepared for forthcoming challenges and tests, created beings and living creatures usually require more than mere words, commandments, and laws that are to reside within their hearts and minds.  There must be operations of divine spirit.  Finite tools such as emotion, imagination, intellect, logic, philosophy, and science are not enough for the living to correctly recognize, resist, and eliminate sin.  Sinners also must receive a fresh deposit of spirit content from the makeup of Deity (e.g., faith, holiness, love, wisdom, wrath against sin); be filled with the imparted, indwelling Spirit of GOD (we say, the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Prophecy); and have sacred knowledge that allows discernment of spirit content from GOD within events (we say, miracles), themselves and other people, the holy writings, etc.  Even so, I trust this fragment will be useful.  Be it unto you according to your faith.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

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Focus, today, is upon the figure of Balaam who appears in the Bible (Numbers, Chapter 22).  Also, there is more on why believers seem to be those who “point their finger” at others.  A “Yahoo! Answers” writer using the ID “Anthony20” (Level 2 with 658 points, a member since October 17, 2009) posted the following that was originally asked on Yahoo Answers Australia:

 

Christians: The story of Balaam – explain something to me.?

I’d actually never read the story but had heard something that I’d like you guys to confirm or deny for me.

Okay, so Balaam tried to curse the Israelites, God sent His angel to stop him, God succeeded as Balaam blessed the people rather than cursing them and later on, Balaam was “killed by the sword.”

So my question is this: I’d heard that even after God told Balaam not to curse the Israelites, he did, which was why he was killed. Is this true? Or did Balaam NOT curse the Israelites at ALL after God told him not to?

 

THE BATTLE AXE:  Without Pointing A Finger? (10/14/2013)—Often the discomfort and embarrassment listeners feel when someone preaches or testifies to them regarding Christian belief is not because the Holy Spirit is operating in the speaker.  The Spirit is now operating within the listener.  Where the listener acknowledges the action and presence of the divine agent within their own awareness and conscience, there is no angry accusation of finger pointing, insult, judging others, or slander.  Among the special works performed by the Holy Spirit men must be made undeniably aware of their own errors, flaws, and shortcomings as created beings and living creatures who are fashioned to serve as companions to eternal deity.  The sinfulness of sin must become visible.  (We say, they must be convicted of sin.)  Additionally, men must repent.  They are moved to recognize the wrong they have done, break off any further error, display changes within their inner person, and acknowledge the atonement made on their behalf.  (We say, they must return to GOD.)   For these reasons, the message to mankind that believers in Jesus Christ openly proclaim to all must contain admonition, cautions, and warnings.  The Gospel can not be delivered as abstract, academic, impersonal, speculative, or theoretical; and there absolutely must be depictions of the consequences for indecision, negligence, procrastinating, and further sin.  It is the Holy Spirit that insures full truth will be shared showing balance, energy, kindness, and thoroughness.  (We say, there must be conviction of divine love, righteousness and wisdom.)  All believers accept the duty and obligation to share warnings with others who may be spiritually unprepared and unsuspecting.  See 2nd Chronicles 19:  4-10, Isaiah 58:  1-14, and Ezekiel 3:  17-21 and 33:  9, 1st Thessalonians 5:  14 and John 8:  1-11, King James Version.

 

THE GOLDEN ARROW:  For thy word’s sake, and according to thine own heart, hast thou done all these great things, to make thy servant know them.  Wherefore thou art great, O LORD God:  for there is none like thee, neither is there any God beside thee, according to all that we have heard with our ears.  And what one nation in the earth is like thy people, even like Israel, whom God went to redeem for a people to himself, and to make him a name, and to do for you great things and terrible, for thy land, before thy people, which thou redeemedst to thee from Egypt, from the nations and their gods?  (2nd Samuel 7:  21-23, KJV)

 

THE DOUBLE DAGGER:  Utterance is Spirit (09/08/2013); A Start for the Idea of GOD? (09/09/2013); Errors of King Solomon? (06/13/2013); Recognizing True Prophets (05/02/2013); Jesus, A Party Animal? (05/03/2013); The Adversary? (12/05/2012); “Soul Food” (12/06/2012)

 

“Anthony20”, here are a few points that many find useful for understanding the account of Balaam:

(1.)  Balaam is a prophet or seer, and is presented as a contrast to Moses.  Also, Balaam depicts the ancient priesthood that was handed down from Adam through Cain, and that had brought the seven tribes into covenant occupying the Promised Land before the sons of Jacob and those who left Egypt.

(2.)  Balaam was used by GOD as a divinely sent spokesperson who did provide authentic and legitimate utterance from the Creator.  However, the anointing upon Balaam is not abiding and continual as would later be established through the ministry of Jesus Christ through the falling of the Holy Ghost at Pentecost.  (The sacred spirit content within Balaam comes and goes in spiritual episodes, so to speak.)  Balaam therefore depicts the conflicts between flesh and spirit that typically undermine divine service.

(3.)  For many, Balaam is figure of Satan, and represents spiritual error that comes through covetousness, deception, pride, and subtlety (like the serpent in the Garden).  Balaam did not discern and give warning against the operation of sin among the Moabites, or in his own attitude and response to GOD.  When Balaam finally accepted that he could not speak a curse upon Israel, he encouraged a plan whereby the new covenant people would lose divine favor through fornication and the worship of idols.

There is far more to be said, correctly applied, and spiritually understood.  (For example, (4.)  The report that Balaam’s jackass spoke to warn the prophet of divine displeasure is neither a parable (a short narrative used to provide an object lesson), nor is the account a fable (a story to amuse and entertain that uses animals and objects as speakers).  Readers are to understand that the authority and power of GOD extends over the many forms of flesh and spirit that exist within the full realm of Creation.)  I trust this fragment will be useful.  Even so, be it unto you according to your faith.  Jesus is coming.

THE BLACK PHOENIX
Washington, DC

 

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