Numbers 22: 22-37
My servants had provisions packed for the trip to Moab shortly after I awoke. The princes seemed quite desperate for me to leave as soon as possible.
While traveling, I thought about the money the princes paid when I agreed to go last night. They also promised treasures from King Balak after I completed the work. Finally, I’d have money to buy what I wanted.
My stomach bothered me this morning. Maybe the Lord was telling me to stay home. Oh well, I'd accepted the money, which meant I had to go to Moab, sick stomach or not.
At noon, my donkey refused to stay on the road. I nudged her forward, but she wouldn't go. I kicked and jiggled the reigns. That bad donkey took off into the field on the side of the road!
I don't know what got into her, but I needed to catch up to the princes before they left me behind. I beat my donkey. "Get back on the road. Now." She obeyed me, at last.
I nudged her to go faster. After a while, we neared the princes and I felt much better.
The road narrowed ahead. Vineyards grew close to the road. The owner put up a wall to keep vines from spilling over. Once again, I pressed my donkey to move forward. She bobbled back and forth and shook her head. I couldn't believe she gave me more trouble.
I kicked her sides and jiggled the reins again. Her hind legs danced to the left ahead of her front legs. She moved closer and closer to the wall until she smashed my foot between her body and the bricks. "Ow!"
I beat her with my stick again. This donkey needed to learn to obey. "Get back on the road. Now."
I hurried her to catch up to the princes. Over the next hill the road narrowed tighter. We had to ride one behind the other in order to pass through. My donkey slowed. The princes kept going as if they hadn't noticed we fell behind. No way would I let the donkey be naughty again.
I nudged her to keep moving. She stopped then plopped down to the ground. There wasn't any room for me to get off! I beat her. "Get up. Get up. Now!"
Then the most amazing thing happened. She turned her head toward me and said, "What have I done to you to make you hit me these three times?"
I couldn’t believe my ears! I looked around and realized my donkey talked. "Well, you've disobeyed me three times. I wish I had a sword to kill you."
She blinked and her ears drooped. "Haven't I been faithful? Have I disobeyed you before today?
I shrugged. "Well, no." At that instant I saw a bright figure standing before me. I rubbed my eyes and blinked twice. Before me stood an angel with a sword drawn, ready to attack me! I fell on my face.
The Angel of the Lord said, "Why did you hit your donkey three times? You chose to please King Balak and disobey Me. If your donkey had not turned to the side, I would have killed you by now and let her live."
My heart pounded and I could barely breath. "Oh Lord. I now see my sin. I’m sorry. I'll return home."
The Angel of the Lord shook his head. "Go with the men, but make sure you speak only the words I tell you." Then Angel of the Lord disappeared.
I took a deep breath then continued on the road.
1. What did the Moabite princes give Balaam?
2. Where was Balaam going? Why?
3. Who did Balaam think disobeyed him?
4. Why did Balaam’s donkey plop on the ground?
5. What did Balaam do wrong?
6. What did the Angel of the Lord tell him to do?