Tuesday, June 25, 2013

A Worse Perspective (doesn't help!)

[From May 1, 2013]

"So Balak said to Balaam, 'Come with me to another place from which you may see them; you shall see only part of them, and shall not see them all; then curse them for me from there.'"
(Numbers 23:13)

The Balak/Balaam story is classic!  Balak, the king of Moab, watched as the Israelites made their way into "The Promised Land."  Worried, he elicits help from Balaam, a prophet-for-hire, to curse them.  But God tells Balaam not to curse them.  But Balak is persistent!  He offers more incentives.  Eventually God gives Balaam permission to go - but not freedom to curse.

Attempt #1 - Bamoth-baal... 7 altars are built.  Sacrifices are made.  Balaam could see the Israelites in the distance.  God had him bless, not curse them.  "D'OH!"  Undeterred, Balak takes him to "another place."  But here's the kicker, it has an obscured view of the Israelites.  I'm guessing he thought if the Israelites weren't seen as clearly, maybe Balaam would have less problems cursing them.  Wrong!

but it makes an interesting point, doesn't it?  How often do we try something again, despite knowing it's wrong?  We justify it.  Or take a step back and try to look at it from an "obscured" perspective.  But it's still wrong.  The only perspective we need is God's. 

When will we (I) learn?

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