Open Heaven 30 January 2023
MEMORISE: “Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them?” – Ezekiel 14:3 (KJV)
BIBLE READING: Numbers 22:12-22 (KJV)
12 And God said unto Balaam, Thou shalt not go with them; thou shalt not curse the people: for they are blessed.
13 And Balaam rose up in the morning, and said unto the princes of Balak, Get you into your land: for the Lord refuseth to give me leave to go with you.
14 And the princes of Moab rose up, and they went unto Balak, and said, Balaam refuseth to come with us.
15 And Balak sent yet again princes, more, and more honourable than they.
16 And they came to Balaam, and said to him, Thus saith Balak the son of Zippor, Let nothing, I pray thee, hinder thee from coming unto me:
17 For I will promote thee unto very great honour, and I will do whatsoever thou sayest unto me: come therefore, I pray thee, curse me this people.
18 And Balaam answered and said unto the servants of Balak, If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the word of the Lord my God, to do less or more.
19 Now therefore, I pray you, tarry ye also here this night, that I may know what the Lord will say unto me more.
20 And God came unto Balaam at night, and said unto him, If the men come to call thee, rise up, and go with them; but yet the word which I shall say unto thee, that shalt thou do.
21 And Balaam rose up in the morning, and saddled his ass, and went with the princes of Moab.
22 And God’s anger was kindled because he went: and the angel of the Lord stood in the way for an adversary against him. Now he was riding upon his ass, and his two servants were with him.
Many a time when we have a plan, we present it to God and He says, “No way”. We then say, “I know how to twist God’s hand”. We begin to fast, pray, seek His face and then finally, we come round and say, “Lord, what about that plan?” He could then say, “Go ahead”. You had better not go anywhere. As children of God, it is our duty to obey Him promptly and completely at all times.
In our Bible reading for today, a king asked Prophet Balaam to curse Israel. Balaam asked God and He said, “No”. The king then sent some other people to tell Balaam that he would promote and enrich him if he would curse Israel. Balaam then decided to check back with God and the Lord said, “Okay, if you want to go, go”. On the way, God sent an angel to block his way. It was Balaam’s donkey that saw the angel; the Prophet, blinded by greed, couldn’t even see what a donkey could. Whenever you are so interested in something that you manage to ‘twist God’s hand’ to permit you to have it, you would be blinded by it and may run into serious trouble because of your inability to see clearly and objectively. If you do a little research to trace the history of Balaam, you would see that he ended up dying by the sword.
One area where Christians often pursue God’s permissive will is in marriage and many of them have regretted it afterwards. The fact that God allowed Hagar to give birth when Abraham went in unto her while Sarah was considered barren does not mean that the latter was the one through whom God’s covenant with Abraham would come to pass (Genesis 17:21).
It doesn’t matter how good the permissive will looks, you better go for God’s express will. Sister, that young man you like may be more financially secure than the one God says you should choose; don’t be fooled by today, God knows tomorrow, and He is instructing you based on that knowledge.
Ask the Lord to reveal His express will to you, because if you ‘twist His arm’ so you can have things your way, the end may be bitter.
KEY POINT: Don’t go to God insisting on your own plan; He may permit it, but you may regret it.
BIBLE IN ONE YEAR: Leviticus 8-10
Thank you for studying today’s Open Heaven – Beware of God’s Permissive Will – written by Pastor Enoch Adeboye
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Open Heaven 30 January 2023