The Bible says in Numbers 24:10-19, “And Balak's anger was kindled against Balaam, and he smote his hands together: and Balak said unto Balaam, I called thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast altogether blessed them these three times. Therefore now flee thou to thy place: I thought to promote thee unto great honour; but, lo, the LORD hath kept thee back from honour. And Balaam said unto Balak, Spake I not also to thy messengers which thou sentest unto me, saying, If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the commandment of the LORD, to do either good or bad of mine own mind; but what the LORD saith, that will I speak? And now, behold, I go unto my people: come therefore, and I will advertise thee what this people shall do to thy people in the latter days. And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor hath said, and the man whose eyes are open hath said: He hath said, which heard the words of God, and knew the knowledge of the most High, which saw the vision of the Almighty, falling into a trance, but having his eyes open: I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth. And Edom shall be a possession, Seir also shall be a possession for his enemies; and Israel shall do valiantly. Out of Jacob shall come he that shall have dominion, and shall destroy him that remaineth of the city.” Balaam made a very good statement in verse thirteen: “but what the LORD saith, that will I speak.” That should be the goal of every one of us. In order to that we must know the Word of the Lord. We must be reading the Bible, memorizing important Bible verses, and gathering at churches with other believers in order to hear God’s Word preached and taught.
In verse fourteen Balaam spoke of the “latter days.” One of the benefits of studying the Bible is that many of the details of the end times are revealed to us. Because life is of relatively short duration, what happens in eternity is what is really important. Verse sixteen says about Balaam that he “heard the words of God, and knew the knowledge of the most High, which saw the vision of the Almighty.” We can never over-emphasize the importance of the Word of God. The longest Psalm, Psalm 119, says something good about the Word of God in every verse, and there are 176 verses in it. If you want to know more about God and Jesus and make Jesus more a part of your life, then you must make the Word of God more a part of your life through reading, memorizing, and going to church to hear sermons from the Word.
In the verses above, in both verse seventeen and verse nineteen, we are told about the fact that the Messiah will be a King who will conquer the cities and nations of the earth. Verse seventeen says, “I shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not nigh: there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Sceptre shall rise out of Israel…” We cannot see Jesus now, but we believe without seeing. Jesus did come in the lineage of Jacob. The “scepter” symbolizes the authority of a king. Verse nineteen not only speaks of the “dominion” of the king, but also that the king will “destroy” when He comes. That will happen at the Battle of Armageddon.
The Bible says in Numbers 24:20-25, “And when he looked on Amalek, he took up his parable, and said, Amalek was the first of the nations; but his latter end shall be that he perish for ever. And he looked on the Kenites, and took up his parable, and said, Strong is thy dwellingplace, and thou puttest thy nest in a rock. Nevertheless the Kenite shall be wasted, until Asshur shall carry thee away captive. And he took up his parable, and said, Alas, who shall live when God doeth this! And ships shall come from the coast of Chittim, and shall afflict Asshur, and shall afflict Eber, and he also shall perish for ever. And Balaam rose up, and went and returned to his place: and Balak also went his way.” The purpose of these verses is to state that God will decide what happens to nations. Every nation on the earth is in God’s hands. That is one of the reasons that we should pray for our country and ask for God’s mercy and God’s blessing upon us. From the standpoint of nations on this earth, God is centered on Israel. Every other nation will be judged based upon their attitude to Israel.
The Bible says in Numbers 25:1-9, “And Israel abode in Shittim, and the people began to commit whoredom with the daughters of Moab. And they called the people unto the sacrifices of their gods: and the people did eat, and bowed down to their gods. And Israel joined himself unto Baal-peor: and the anger of the LORD was kindled against Israel. And the LORD said unto Moses, Take all the heads of the people, and hang them up before the LORD against the sun, that the fierce anger of the LORD may be turned away from Israel. And Moses said unto the judges of Israel, Slay ye every one his men that were joined unto Baal-peor. And, behold, one of the children of Israel came and brought unto his brethren a Midianitish woman in the sight of Moses, and in the sight of all the congregation of the children of Israel, who were weeping before the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And when Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, saw it, he rose up from among the congregation, and took a javelin in his hand; And he went after the man of Israel into the tent, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her belly. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel. And those that died in the plague were twenty and four thousand.” The times of the Old Testament were often violent times and very harsh times. The law was harsh. It is no wonder that God set aside the law and replaced it with the covenant based upon grace and mercy. It says in in John 1:17, “The law came by Moses but grace and trust came by Jesus Christ.”
Verse one speaks of the immorality that the Israelites became involved with. That was partly because of their association with ungodly people. One thing is for certain: those who turn away from God become more and more immoral over time. God is holy, and the closer we are to God through Christ, the more that our lives will be holy. Verse two speaks about spiritual immorality: false religion. God wants every person on the earth to be involved with true religion, but unfortunately there is a lot of false teaching and false practice out there. One of the values of the Bible is that it tells us what is true about Jesus and the true service of God. “Evil communications corrupt good manners.” We want to influence others for good instead of having them influence us for evil.
Under the law, sin results in death: sudden and sure. But through faith in Christ, forgiveness results in life eternal. That is why it says in Romans 6:33, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
The Bible says in Numbers 25:10-13, “And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned my wrath away from the children of Israel, while he was zealous for my sake among them, that I consumed not the children of Israel in my jealousy. Wherefore say, Behold, I give unto him my covenant of peace: And he shall have it, and his seed after him, even the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was zealous for his God, and made an atonement for the children of Israel.” There are several spiritual lessons that we can learn from “Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron” even though we would never do what he did because we do not live in Old Testament times. Phinehas was “zealous” to serve God. That means that he had a strong desire to serve God among all else. There are a lot of problems with Christianity today, and one of the greatest problems is a lack of zeal. Many people say that they believe, but how many have a burning zeal to serve the Lord Jesus above all else?
At the end of verse eleven God spoke of His “jealousy.” God is a jealous God. That is why He put as the first of the Ten Commandments, “Thou shalt have no other gods before my face.” Remember that Jesus said that the greatest commandment is to “love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, all thy mind, all thy soul, and all thy strength.” It is all too easy for something else to take precedence in our hearts and lives instead of Jesus. John warned Christians in First John 5:21, “Little children, keep yourselves from idols.”
In verse twelve God spoke of “my covenant of peace.” Peace with God is one of the important benefits of salvation through faith in Christ. Many people are at war with God in their hearts. It seems strange that a mere mortal would do that, but has given freedom of choice to every person. Blessed are those who find peace with God. It is simply a matter of being honest and humble, and coming to Christ. It says in Romans 5:1, “Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:”
In verse thirteen God spoke to Phinehas of a “covenant of an everlasting priesthood.” Notice the word “everlasting.” God wants to give us everlasting life. Death came into the world when Adam and Eve sinned. But God has a solution to the terrible problem of death: eternal life through faith in Christ. That is why Jesus left heaven and came to the earth: to pay the price for sin so that our souls could be ransomed. Believers will not die. They will live in heaven forever.
The Bible says in Numbers 25:14-18, “Now the name of the Israelite that was slain, even that was slain with the Midianitish woman, was Zimri, the son of Salu, a prince of a chief house among the Simeonites. And the name of the Midianitish woman that was slain was Cozbi, the daughter of Zur; he was head over a people, and of a chief house in Midian. And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, Vex the Midianites, and smite them: For they vex you with their wiles, wherewith they have beguiled you in the matter of Peor, and in the matter of Cozbi, the daughter of a prince of Midian, their sister, which was slain in the day of the plague for Peor's sake.” These verses explain in more detail the bad influence that the people of Midian had on the children of Israel. They were sexually corrupt. Their women used their beauty in the wrong way: to purposefully sexually attract the men of Israel. That is what God was talking about in verse eighteen when He said, “they vex you with their wiles.” Of course, women are beautiful and attractive to men. God designed it that way, and God did a very good design. Billions of people in the world are proof of how well God’s design has worked to attract men to women. But women need to be very careful how they use that power. Christian women want to be feminine but modest. They want to be attractive but not too alluring purposefully just to attract men from a physical standpoint. If you do that, you might just be attracting the wrong kind of man. A Christian woman realizes that the most important aspect of her life is what kind of a person is she. It says in First Timothy 2:9-10, “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.”
Concerning the women of Midian and their effect on the men of Israel, God said in Numbers 25:18, “they have beguiled you.” In America many of the women who went to Hollywood for careers became just like the women of Midian. They use their bodies to seduce men. They use their bodies for attention, and fame, and money, and to further their careers. And so their lives are wasted. They became part of the problem of corrupting the society with sexual improprieties. They sin, and they tempt others to lust and sin. These women have only one hope: to repent and turn to Jesus for forgiveness, and then to learn what a real woman can be: compassionate, modest, attempting to only attract her own husband, and finding out what her real gifts and abilities are so that she can use her mind and abilities in service to God, and stop using her body in service to the devil.
Copyright; 2019 by Charles
F. (Rick) Creech
All Rights Reserved