The book of Numbers tells the story of a king called Balak , the leader of the Moabites ( situated in the present day Jordan ) .the dawning of a new day brought for this king a sight for sore eyes . the israelites had camped in their tents facing Moab ….. he could smell three Ds ….. death , defeat and disgrace… The guy had heard about the story of Israel , the ten plagues, the parting of the red sea , and even closer home , the defeat of the amorites ( situated south of present day iraq ) . like any sensible leader , he was bothered about the security of his people and estate , this was when the guy heard about a prophet called Balaam . ” his words do not fall to the ground ” he was told , so he was persuaded to send for him so as to come and put a curse on the children of Israel .very smart move indeed , becos it was obvious that people did not have military training , weapons of war and all the likes and yet they seemed to defeat kingdoms as they advanced ….
Balak sent a couple of guys and ” gifts ” , to Balaam , persuading him to come and curse the baggers ! interesting story indeed … Balaam asks they should spend the night while he asks God whether to go or not …. DON’T GO is what God told him so he sent them on their way ,the next day ,saying that he cant do anything except the ” Lord permits me ” …pious indeed !
so what does the king do ? increase the EGUNJE ( after all, “everyone has a price “) and then upgrade the calibre of messengers ! haba ! the guy go bow …… when he saw the PEPPER , the prophet must have thought ,let me talk to God again , “shebi i will pay tithe” ? A preacher, sometime back made a statement that got my attention , MONEY IS GOD’S LITMUS TEST FOR CHARACTER ……. how profoundly true!
I know of a very rich man who always maintained that no one can convince him that a poor dude is a “good guy “, he says when he is given “good money” , then you will know his true character…anywayssss he asks and this time hears what he wants to hear ….GO! amazing how we think we can deceive God when we so foolishly end up deceiving ourselves … and its not uncommon or peculiar , we have ALL done it at one point or the other in life , usually ending up so foolish…hehe..so Balaam sets off the following day and God sends an angel to stop him …. my guy no see jack …. the “benjamins” had blinded him .. three times the angel of the lord appeared , three times his donkey saw ’em and tried to avoid running into him , three times the ” prophet hit the donkey ….. then the donkey spoke ….. ” why do u hit me ? have i ever disobeyed u ? is it not becos of the angel that I SEE before me ?”
imagine that ! The Prophet did not see the angel that the donkey saw , because he had “seen” the pepper and lost his “sight”….WOW! Who be “donkey” now abeg ? Then because he could not see and hit the donkey , it spoke ….ah! at the beginning of this trip, there was a prophet , a donkey and a mission motivated by greed . At this point , when the donkey spoke , there were 2 “donkeys” and a mission motivated by greed !
Did Balak send Balaam a gift or a bribe? … the dictionary definition of a gift is ” something of value that is given without expectation. A bribe on the other hand is ” something of value that is given with the hope of future influence.
A bribe made Balam the prophet “hear” what he wanted to hear God say ,made him spiritually blind , and basically placed at the same “level” as his donkey,it cost him much more than he bargained for ..it always does. Don’t be a donkey …don’t take that bribe !