Balaam' Four Prophecies

Prophecy Number Four: Numbers 24:15-24

After Balaam, the false prophet "who loved the wages of unrighteousness" , had for the third time blessed the people of Israel when King Balak of Moab had hired him to curse them for him, "Then Balak's anger was aroused against Balaam . . . and Balak said to Balaam, 'I called you to curse my enemies, and look, you have bountifully blessed them these three times.'

"So Balaam said to Balak, 'Did I not also speak to your messengers whom you sent to me saying, "Though Balak were to give me his house full of siver and gold, I could not go beyond the word of the LORD, to do either good or bad of my own will; but what the LORD says, that I must speak'" ?" (Numbers 24:10-14)

Balaam therefore announced to King Balak that he would henceforth be returning to his own people to Pethor near the Euphrates, but before going he said: "Come, I will advise you what this people (Israel) will do to your people in the latter days."

So God came upon Balaam again and opened his eyes to see what He was going to do for His people Israel. God showed that He would deal with the enemies of His people, and none would stand in His way or thwart His purposes; that God's promises and covenants would be completely and absolutely fulfilled.

  1. The Advent of the Messiah

The first part of the fourth prophecy God gave to Balaam which was "the utterance of him who hears the words of God, and knows the knowledge of the Most High; who sees the vision of the Almighty, who falls down, with eyes opened wide," was a revelation of the Messiah of Israel, the Lion of the tribe of Judah:

"I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not near; a Star shall come out of Jacob; a sceptre shall rise out of Israel . . . " This tells us that God in opening the eyes of Balaam gave him a revelation of the Messiah, who came, first to bear the sins of the whole world, but then also for judgement as described by the prophet Isaiah:

"'Who is this who comes . . . glorious in his apparel, travelling in the greatness of his strength?' 'I who speak in righteousness, mighty to save.' 'Why is your apparel red, and your garments like one who treads in the winepress?'

"I have trodden the winepress alone, and from the peoples no one was with me. For I have trodden them in my anger, and trampled them in my fury; their blood is sprinkled upon my garments, and I have stained all my robes'" (63:1-3).

This vision given to Isaiah supports the revelation given to Balaam: "Out of Jacob one shall have dominion, and destroy the remnants of the city." This very clearly speaks of the coming of the Messiah when He returns to crush His enemies in the Day of the LORD, a day that was spoken of freely by His prophets.

  1. The Rise of the Antichrist

Then Balaam "looked on Amalek, and he took up his oracle and said: 'Amalek was first among the nations, but shall be last until he perishes.'" Amalek was the first nation to oppose Israel, and we may read about the occasion in Exodus 17.

"Now Amalek came and fought with Israel in Rephidim. And Moses said to Joshua, 'Choose us some men and go out, fight with Amalek. Tomorrow I will stand on the top of the hill with the rod of God in my hand.'"

The rod of God is the symbol of the authority of God, and just as Amalek was destroyed by the Israelites when Moses held the rod of God in his hand, so Amalek the type of the Antichrist will be judged and destroyed by the authority, power and sovereignty of our God in the day of His vengeance, in the day when the Messiah holds the rod of God in His hand.

We remember the Amalekite king, Agag, and God's dealings with his nation through Saul and Samuel, and we also remember that Hamaan in the account of Esther was an Agagite whose purpose was to destroy utterly all the Jewish people who were in all one hundred and twenty-seven provinces of King Ahasuerus. Not one would be spared!

What a picture of the coming Antichrist and of the ungodly nations in the world today who would be followers of the Antichrist! However at that time in Esther's day God showed Himself strong on behalf of His people. He raised up Mordechai and Esther who were called "for such a time as this" to intercede before the king, to expose the wicked plot of Haman, and so God saved His people from destruction.

Even so God is raising up intercessors in these days who will continually pray for His people, for their preservation and ultimate salvation amidst the forces of evil that beset them on every hand. The Scriptures put it this way: "For Zion's sake I will not hold my peace, and for Jerusalem's sake I will not rest, until her righteousness goes forth as brightness, and her salvation as a lamp that burns" (Isaiah 62:1).

  1. The Rise and Fall of Gentile Nations

The last section of Balaam's fourth prophecy regarding the events that will involve Israel in the latter days has to do with some Gentile nations of his particular day, nations that are now never mentioned or remembered only because they opposed God's people Israel. God dealt with them in His own wonderful and thorough way.

In our day and generation we have seen the miraculous rebirth of the Jewish State of Israel, and yet we also see various nations of the world rising up together to destroy this nation. We could go on and on citing nation after nation that is declaring opposition to Israel, including their near neighbours and the European Union and the United Nations.

However, the prophecies that God gave to Balaam will surely soon come to pass, and God will deal with these nations even as He has foretold by many of the prophets, including Zechariah: "It shall come to pass that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem" (12:9).

EPILOGUE: "And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying: 'Take vengeance for the children of Israel on the Midianites. Afterwards you shall be gathered to your people.' So Moses spoke to the people, saying, 'Arm some of yourselves for the war, and let them go against the Midianites to take vengeance for the LORD on Midian.' . . . And they warred against the Midianites, just as the LORD commanded Moses . . . Balaam the son of Beor they also killed with sword." Numbers 31:1-3,7,8