“Praise the Lord, the God of Israel, because he has visited and redeemed his people.” Luke 1:68

Who can forget the Bible story about the donkey that talked? Balaam was on his way as a “hired prophet” to curse the Israelites when the Angel of the Lord stood in the roadway with his sword drawn. Although invisible to Balaam, the donkey could see the danger ahead and sat down in the roadway, refusing to go another step. Out of his fury, Balaam began to beat his trusted Donkey when the Donkey spoke up in his own defense and said, “I’m your own donkey. You’ve always ridden me. Have I ever done this to you before?”

In that moment, Balaam’s eyes were opened, and he realized the danger in front of him. Nevertheless, the bounty offered by the King of Moab was more than Balaam could resist. Overlooking the Israelites in the valley below, Balaam tried his best to curse the decedents of Jacob, but only blessing could come out of his mouth.

In spite of Israel’s constant rebellion and complaining, they were still living under a divine blessing that was so strong that the curse was reversed and what Balaam wanted to say he could not utter. You see the blessing that Israel was living under had way more to do with God’s love and mercy than it did their obedience. The truth is they deserved the curse, but only blessing came their way. Deuteronomy 23:5 says, “But the LORD your God refused to listen to Balaam. He turned the intended curse into a blessing because the LORD your God loves you.

What a great reminder for us today. Because of Jesus we’ve been spared from the curse we deserve and instead have been given nothing but blessing.

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