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For there is no sorcery against Jacob, nor any divination against Israel. It now must be said of Jacob and of Israel, “Oh, what God has done!” (Numbers 23:23)

The prophet Amos wrote, “Surely the Lord GOD does nothing, unless He reveals His secret to His servants the prophets” (Amos 3:7). In other words, when God wants His people to know something, He will tell them through His chosen servants. That has been His way from the very beginning. Therefore, unlike nations such as Moab and kings such as Balak, there is no need for divination in Israel — God Almighty is with them.

Commentators put forth another possible interpretation of this verse which is — sorcery and enchantments do not prevail against Israel. In short, the black arts — curses, spells and the like — have absolutely no power over God’s people. Therefore, followers of the Messiah should not fear a “witch’s” curse as some do. Think about it: God delivered Israel from Egypt by His might and not by magicians’ tricks. When the magicians of Egypt attempted to demonstrate their power, Aaron’s rod devoured the serpentine rod of the Egyptians. In this account, Balak was trying to curse Israel with magic and was repudiated.

And so, where God’s people are concerned, we should not fear those who practice the black arts nor should we dabble in those things — we don’t need such. When the text says, “Now it is said of Jacob and Israel, ‘What has God wrought?'” is to suggest that, at the appropriate time, God lets His people know what is about to happen. He will either raise up a prophet to share with His people or — and this seems to be the most common way — He informs us by His Spirit. Seeing that it is needful to know what God is doing, it is critical that we be filled with His Spirit and keen to hear His voice.

Blessings and Shalom,  




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