March 5, 2017. Numbers 23-25.
In today's reading we are introduced to two individuals who show us specific actions that are pleasing to the Lord. We read, “Now when Balaam saw it pleased the Lord to bless Israel…” (Numbers 24:1). The simple act of speaking words that bless His people, is pleasing to the Lord. This is not something that is only true for this specific incident with Israel, but is true for all who have believed in Jesus Christ as Savior and are children of God.
Jesus provides the specifics of blessing others when He tells us, “Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification (building up), that it may impart grace to the hearers.” (Ephesians 4:29) The specifics of speaking words that bless others are speaking words that build up others, and impart grace to others. This is a simple act that is pleasing to the Lord.
Where do these words of blessing, edification and grace come from? None other than the Lord Himself. “Then the Lord put a word in Balaam’s mouth…” (Numbers 23:5) If we will learn to just take a moment to listen to what the Lord wants us to say to that individual before us, we, like Balaam, will take this action of pleasing the Lord. The pleasing action of speaking words that are a blessing, building up and imparting grace to another individual.
In chapter 25 we are introduced to a man named Phinehas who the Lord describes as, “he was zealous with My zeal.” (Verse 11) Balaam had the word of the Lord, Phinehas has the zeal of the Lord, among the people of the Lord. It is a zeal that hates sin that is destroying the people of the Lord. A zeal that takes action to confront sin for the benefit of protecting others. This zeal is obviously also an action that is pleasing to the Lord.
The Lord loves to bless His people. He is pleased when He uses us to bless His people. Wth each encounter with another person, listen. Listen for the words of the Lord for that person to bless them, edify them, and impart grace to them or, if necessary, to zealously confront destructive sin. And then, enjoy that moment of pleasing the Lord as you speak, or more precisely, He speaks through you.