Nevertheless, I have a few things against you: There are some among you who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin so that they ate food sacrificed to idols and committed sexual immorality.
I have a confession to make. When I was a child, I was obsessed with lighting things on fire. Now I know, this isn’t exactly uncommon with little boys, but you see, I didn’t live somewhere that I could have a bonfire in the yard or in the fireplace. I lived in a tiny house with a tiny yard. What I did have, however, was a gas stove. So…I used to put things on the burner to watch them light on fire. Toothpicks, cotton swabs, pretzel sticks, sugar, you name it. My mom would beg me not to do it, because she feared that I was going to burn the house down. By the grace of God, I never did, but the truth is I could easily have done so, all because I couldn’t get enough of the fire, the little twinkle of light, that could have destroyed my life and the lives of my family. I was the moth chasing my own destruction. Thank God I grew out of that phase.
The story of Balaam shows us this situation played out on the scale of a whole nation. Balaam was a prophet, a man given the very words of God to speak. And yet Balaam’s obsession wasn’t God, or the Word of God, it was something much closer to Earth. It was money. We see in the Book of Numbers that Balaam just cares about money. It was his guiding light. He made so many important decisions based on what was going to bring him profit, rather than make him a good prophet
Balaam was willing to curse God’s people, and was only restrained by God. He went to serve a king of the enemies of the Israelites, and as we see in the above passage, he found a way to get his paycheck, by teaching Balak how to destroy Israel by using their lust.
Balaam’s guiding light lead him and the Israelite people to destruction, where is yours leading you?
1: What is something in your life that you are seeking after, and putting energy, time, and effort into reaching? Why is that thing so important to you? Is there something that should be more important to you?
2: Have you ever chased after something that was going to destroy you? What rescued you from destruction? What helped you to be able to reorganize your priorities to find a more important lighthouse?
Pray that God would lead you from temptation, and keep you from chasing after things that will lead to your destruction. Pray that He gives you a clear guiding light to His will. Also pray for brothers and sisters around the world who are slaves to lust, greed, and other sins. Pray for God to break every chain.