Jesus carry's weapons...

>> Wednesday, March 11, 2009

So i'm doing the bible-in-a-year plan thing which most cool christians do at some point in their lives. Anyways, Numbers 22 was one of the passages this morning, and in it, Jesus shows up wielding a blade...

Now at this point, if you're anything like me, you'll be excited and ready for more story. You might even be thinking "why haven't I heard about this before? does Jesus own some noobs? is it a samuri sword or a battle axe?" All valid questions.

Let me try to summarize the passage:

The Israelites are cruising to the promised land, and they start to whoop up on some foreigners who won't let them pass through their town. Another neighboring city hears about the beastiness of God's people and gets scared. His reaction, naturally, was to send word to a guy named Balaam who apparently was a holy man able to send blessings or cursings on people. In this case, a curse was desired.

This dude, Balaam, prays to the Lord and gets a"don't you dare curse my homies" reply. Balaam relays the message and the errand boys return to the sissy-king. The king tells the messengers to go back and try again, offering riches and land and what not. Balaam answers their request with a freakin cool speech (of which i won't paraphrase in ghetto story-telling rhetoric)

"Though Balak were to give me his house full of silver and gold, I could not go
beyond the command of the LORD my God to do less or more."

However, Balaam also tells the errand boys to stay the night and ends up praying to the Lord and being told to go and see whats happenin' with the Israelites. At this point, Balaam begins to start loving the gifts and not the giver, and starts to anger the jealous God that he serves. The scripture says it like this, "22But God’s anger was kindled because he went, and the angel of the LORD took his stand in the way as his adversary." Note: Notice where it says the angel of the Lord, and not an angel of the Lord.

So hes trotting down the road on his donkey, shootin' the breeze with these pagan messengers, and the donkey sees THE angel of the Lord with a "DRAWN SWORD IN HAND" standing facing them in the road. Needless to say, the donkey books it off the road (probably similar to the one i'm building!!!!! j/k...thats unrealistic) and jets into a field. Balaam, probably feeling a little embarrassed at this point, kicks the donkey and tries to redirect his field-bound path. The stubborn donkey, through kicks and all, continues to flee from the warrior-angel and ends up walking between two vineyards. Yet, as all God's children know, its tough to run from an omnipresent God, especially when He wants your attention. So at the end of the vineyard, the donkey spots the angel again, standing in the way. With similar results, the donkey freaks and Balaam kicks. The process repeats a third time, but this time, the donkey speaks up for himself (and I mean literally, he begins to speak...). After a short dialogue between man and beast, the LORD opens up Balaam's eyes and behold:

...he saw the angel of the LORD standing in the way, with his drawn sword in his
hand. And he bowed down and fell on his face. 32And the angel of the LORD said
to him, "Why have you struck your donkey these three times? Behold, I have come
out to oppose you because your way is perverse before me. 33The donkey saw me
and turned aside before me these three times. If she had not turned aside from
me, surely just now I would have killed you and let her live." 34Then Balaam
said to the angel of the LORD, "I have sinned, for I did not know that you stood
in the road against me. Now therefore, if it is evil in your sight, I will turn

Among many, there are two things I take from this story:
  1. Jesus is freaking awesome, awe inspiring, powerful, and he carries a sword with him. If you question this, check out Rev 1:16...Jesus spits a sword out of his mouth.
  2. How gracious is our God, that he would send Jesus to oppose us when need be and might even use a donkey to right our paths, so that we would not travel to a place where harm would befall us. This means that for the elect people of God, we can't run from Him, even if we want to. Praise Jesus!


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