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  • Writer's picturemitchhorton

Here Is What We Can Learn From Balaam, Esau, And Samson

We as believers are in Christ and are blessed with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 1:3). However, we can cancel the intended favor and blessing of God on our lives through disobedience and sin. We can learn a lot from the stories of Balaam, Esau, and Samson. Here are some lessons we can glean from them.

In Numbers 22-24, You can read the story of how Balak (King of the Moabites) tried to get the prophet Balaam to curse Israel. And what a blessing we receive when we read of Balaam’s response, How can you curse whom God has not cursed! (Numbers 23:8). As Christians, we are the people of God, and are like Israel we are destined to be blessed!

But there is an interesting twist in the story of Balaam. Though he could not entice God into the notion of cursing His own people, Balaam through his warped spiritual view encouraged the Israelites to go and party with their heathen relatives, the Moabites (See Numbers 25). The Moabites worshipped Baal, and included in Baal worship was some very gross immorality. And the Israelites went right along with the Moabites into their heathen fleshly sexual indulgences in their worship of Baal.

As a result, 24,000 Israelites died of a plague that broke out. Balaam couldn’t get God to curse the Israelites, but the Israelites brought a curse on themselves through yielding to the flesh and purposely disobeying God and breaking their covenant with Him!

Esau was to be blessed with the inheritance of the first born (which was getting 2/3 of the inheritance passed down from his father), but he gave it away in a pledge to his brother Jacob. Esau became so hungry that he despised his own birthright (which in that culture was the greatest honor) for a bowl of soup! His flesh and his natural appetite caused him to lose the blessing destined to him by God!

Samson took the vow of the Nazarite. He consecrated himself to God and became a national hero in Israel through feats of supernatural strength. The power of God would come on Samson, and he became a one man army as he single handedly defeated the enemy. But he lost God’s blessing on his life when he fell in love and sinned with a Philistine prostitute named Delilah. She coerced him into telling her the secret of his strength (his long hair through the Nazarite vow). Sin had so numbed Samson’s conscience that he was unaware of when the Spirit of God left him. Unconfessed sin cancels God’s blessings.

The lesson for us today is strikingly clear. We are destined to be blessed with Abraham’s blessings as believers! We’re the head and not the tail, always at the top and never at the bottom (see Deuteronomy 28). The Father wants to lavish us with His best. But we through our own disobedience can cancel the destined blessing. Let’s keep the flesh under, and refuse to sell our birthright of blessing for a moment of selfish pleasure!

I’ll leave you today with the words of the prophet Isaiah on the subject:

If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land; but if you refuse and rebel, you shall be devoured by the sword”; for the mouth of the Lord has spoken (Isaiah 1:19-20).

If you miss it, repent! God forgives when you confess sin. Refuse to live in disobedience. God blesses obedience! Walk with God, refuse the offers of the flesh to dishonor your Lord. When you mess up, go to God in humble repentance. He will forgive, forget, and cleanse. And you will be available for the best that God has for your life.

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