Balak, instead of riding out in war against Israel, sought to undermine their power by attacking them another way—through the sorcery of Balaam, a man of powerful divination. Balak chose this method because of his fear. Israel, in his eyes, were too vast in number for his army to overtake. A more subtle tactic was necessary.
This is insightful about our own enemy, Satan. He sees our might and is afraid. Fear causes him to use subtleties. 2 Corinthians 11:3 “ But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” We, however, have the same Defender as did Israel. Our God does not leave us vulnerable to Satan’s plan “…for we are not ignorant of his devices” (2 Corinthians 2: 11). When the enemy seeks to destroy us, we have victory through Jesus Christ. “No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper; and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment thou shalt condemn. This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord, and their righteousness is of me, saith the Lord” (Isaiah 54:17).
Even when the enemy launches his most secretive weapon, he loses because God will turn it around. God did it for Joseph when his brothers plotted against him, for Israel when Balaam attempted to curse Israel---only to speak blessing over them instead. He does it for us when Satan attempts to undermine us, our authority, our identity, our very existence. John 10:10 says, “The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.” You see, for Joseph, there was a promotion, for Israel there was a promise. For us, there was a Calvary. Pinnacles of victory over the adversary. With God, opposition equals elevation—even if wicked pharaohs have to dream, dumb donkeys begin to talk, famous sorcerers prophesy God’s blessings, or trials turn into stepping stones to mountain tops of glory. “With God, all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26).
“What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?” Romans 8:31.
Notice how God was for Israel in the middle of the enemy’s effort to curse and weaken them. Using Balaam as his mouthpiece, God said,
“…Rise up, Balak, and hear; hearken unto me, thou son of Zippor: God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good? Behold, I have received commandment to bless: and he hath blessed; and I cannot reverse it. He hath not beheld iniquity in Jacob, neither hath he seen perverseness in Israel: the Lord his God is with him, and the shout of a king is among them. God brought them out of Egypt; he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn. Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob, neither is there any divination against Israel: according to this time it shall be said of Jacob and of Israel, What hath God wrought!”
Huh? In addition to amazing prophesies regarding the coming Messiah, God spoke this?
Israel who had grumbled, been ungrateful and altogether a pain in the neck was seen by God as without iniquity or perverseness! God beheld HIMSELF victorious among them!
Isn’t that how He is with us? Faltering, failing humanity, claimed by God as HIs chosen, are seen faultless and forgiven THROUGH HIMSELF. His blood. His sacrifice. His victory. We are seen as without iniquity or perverseness because the KING is among us!
God stands up for His children like a defensive parent. He may correct, but Satan has no right to touch whom God has called His own. God in us sends a shout of military threat for the enemy to hear and a shout of jubilation for His people to share.
What an honor to have the King’s defense and the King’s delight, the blessings of being a kid of the King!!
Tip/Tidbit: Have you ever failed to encounter trouble you expected? You should have been injured, but you weren’t. You should have wrecked, but you didn’t. You should have been depressed, but you felt peace. You should have carried a lifetime of guilt, but you enjoyed forgiveness and freedom. These are moments when the King intervened on your behalf. Don’t take for granted his protection, perspective, or provision in your life.