“The Lord has refused to let me go with you.” Numbers 22:13
The following morning Balaam told the visitors, “I can’t do it.” He handed back the check and said goodbye. It was the hardest and most courageous thing he ever did. And if that were the end, it would have been a great story. But it wasn’t.
When King Balak heard the news, he knew what to do next—send another delegation with a bigger check. After all, every man has his price, and when Balaam has time to think about it, surely he will see that there is very little future for him in that little ministry in Pethor.
So, a second delegation was sent. It was a larger group of even more distinguished princes. “This is an offer you can’t refuse,” they said, “the opportunity of a lifetime.” And Balaam gave them a marvelous answer, “Even if Balak gave me his palace filled with silver and gold, I could not do anything great or small to go beyond the command of the Lord my God.”
God said that these people are blessed, and if God has blessed them, there is no way in the world Balaam can curse them. He believed that. But what he believed and what he did were two different things.
Imagine one day a delegation from the White House shows up at your door. You are told that the President wants you to speak at some State banquet. It will launch your career on a national stage. All you need to do is adapt the message to fit his agenda!
Balaam is desperate to find a way to do what King Balak is asking, so he says he will pray about it. It sounds so spiritual, but actually it was the beginning of Balaam’s plunge to disaster. God had already spoken. But Balaam was looking for a way around the Word of God.
Have you ever “prayed about” something you knew God was opposed to?