Balaam and the talking donkey

As you probably know, the Bible is not like a textbook. The information is scattered. An illustration is BalaamBalaam (of Balaam and the talking donkey fame).

The basic story is in the book of Numbers. There are some puzzling statements in it:

  • God told Balaam not to go with Balak’s people to curse the Israelites and he did not go (22:12).
  • Then he was entreated again to curse the Israelites, with the promise of great reward. Balaam wavered and replied that he will find out what else the Lord will tell him (22:19). God told him to go with them (22:20).
  • Balaam went, but God was very angry (22:22).
  • God talked to Balaam through the donkey he was riding on. God told him he was on a reckless path (22:32). Balaam was willing to turn back, but God said he he must go, but speak only what God tells him (22:34,35).

If we read only Numbers 22, it is confusing and difficult to understand. However, references to Balaam from the other Bible books help to piece the whole episode together:

  • There is a clue in 2 Peter 2:15, They [false teachers] have left the straight way and wandered off to follow the way of Balaam, son of Beor, who loved the wages of wickedness. Balaam’s eyes glittered at the riches Balak promised him (Numbers 22:7,17). That is why he said he will find out ‘what else’ the Lord will tell him. He hoped there was a way around his dilemma to please God and earn good money. Jude 11 has the same theme, …they [godless men] have rushed for profit into Balaam’s error… Balaam was out to make a quick buck, but God was in the way.
  • Balaam did deliver God’s message, but he gave ‘extra’ advice to Balak: the way to handle the threat of the Isrealites, was to get Israelite men to indulge in immorality with Moabite women. Then God’s wrath will come on the Israelites. In Revelation 2:14 we read, You have people who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to entice the Israelites to sin by eating food sacrificed to idols and by committing sexual immorality.
  • Balaam’s advice was effective, since we read in Numbers 25 what happened. The Moabite women seduced the Israelite men. In the subsequent plague as a result of their sin, 24,000 Israelites died by the hand of God.
  • Why was God angry at Balaam? He wanted to protect Balaam from doing something that would cause his own ruin. Balaam’s advice cost the Israelites 24,000 people and he lost his life eventually. In Numbers 31:8 we read, They also killed Balaam son of Beor with the sword.

To summarise
We only understand the narrative fully when we read all the relevant passages in the different books (a good concordance is a great help). This is the pattern in the Bible. The ‘information is scattered.’ It was designed that way by the Holy Spirit so that we will not only read a verse or two, but study and meditate on the Word. Then we will come to understand our Lord God Almighty and His Son, who opened the way for the Holy Spirit to sanctify God’s people and prepare us for eternal life.

Compare The myth of the talking snake.

Paranoia about the Bible

Paranoia is described as, a mental disorder characterised by any of several types Paranoiaof delusions, in which the personality otherwise remains relatively intact.1 One of the strongest delusions of our time is that there is no Creator God. The reason given is that evolution buried Him. Let’s look at some examples.

 

  1. Humans and chimps are related. Some even claim there is only a 1% difference between the DNA of the two. Why can any three year old go to the zoo and tell the difference? The delusion causes evolutionists to forget the genetic facts revealed by scientific investigation. There are huge differences that support the Biblical account of creation.2
  2. There are laws in the UK to prevent criticism of evolution in schools. Next on the agenda is to force private schools to stop teaching creation. 3 Any logical, reasonable person understands if you need to protect evolution from criticism with laws, it cannot be true. Does it need protection because it is just propaganda?
  3. Carl Sagan made a Cosmos television series in the 1980s. He is famous for his statement, ‘The cosmos is all there is, ever was, or ever will be.’  The series has been updated and is hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson. In the first episode Tyson devoted some time to promote the lie that religion is at war with science.  The case of Giordano Bruno, found on Wikipedia, was adapted to spread an erroneous message. The Christian faith was never, and will never be at war with operational science. It is evolution that they disagree with. The makers of the series are so paranoid about the Bible that they are willing to lie about Bruno.

  4. Peter Boghhossian, a professor of philosophy and an avowed atheist, tells us that among others, the Christian faith is a belief without evidence. 5  Nowhere in his book does he discuss the reliable historical documents that separate the Bible from books about other gods. Is he dishonest, or plain paranoid about the Creator God?

 

It is amazing that we live in an enlightened world, but there is a great effort to suppress knowledge about God and the Bible.

 

Question: Is the paranoia about the Bible not a strong indication that it is true?

 

References

  1. Collins English Dictionary, HarperCollins Publishers, 2005.
  2. Ann Gauger, The Mismeasure of Man: Why Popular Ideas about Human-Chimp Comparisons are Misleading or Wrong, March 10, 2014, http://www.evolutionnews.org/2014/03/the_mismeasure083011.html
  3. P Robinson, The Attack on Biblical Creation in the UK Schools continues, 9 March, 2014, http://creation.com/attack-on-creation-in-schools.
  4. Casey Luskin, Cosmos with Neil deGrasse Tyson: Same Old Product, Bright New Packaging, March 10, 2014, http://www.evolutionnews.org/2014/03/cosmos_with_nei083031.html.
  5. P Boghossian, A Manual for Creating Atheists, Pitchstone Publishing Durham, North Carolina, 2013, p 23.

 

 

DeGrasse Tyson’s mistake about the Bible

Neil deGrasse Tyson is the  presenter of the television series, Cosmos:A Space Time Odyssey that
Neil deGrasse Tysonstarted in March 2014. He made the following challenging statement, “There is no example of someone reading their scripture and saying, ‘I have a prediction about the world that no one knows yet, because this gave me insight. Let’s go test that prediction,’ and have the prediction correct.” 1

 

What he inferred is that the Bible and its creation account must be removed from the scientific scene. Science can make predictions and the Bible cannot. We, based on our belief that the Bible is true, predict the following two things:

 

  1. Science will never be able to solve the riddle of the origin of the universe, our solar system, and life on earth.
  2. Science will reveal ever added layers of complexity, especially when it comes to the biological world. This means solving life’s evolutionary origin question will become more difficult.


Concerning prediction 1

It is difficult for science to solve the origins issue, because each part of the creation that God made is unique: the universe, our solar system, the sun, moon, our earth, water, plants, microbes, insects, reptiles, fish, birds, animals and humans. For example,

  • The big bang. We often hear about the big bang and why it is true. Yet no one can explain precisely where the singularity that exploded or expanded to form the universe came from. We are expected to believe the fairy tales that it just popped into existence.
  • A multiverse. Another way to skirt around the origins issue is to claim we live in a multiverse. Really? How are we to know? We are expected to believe it by faith (that there is no Creator God, because out of millions of universes there was one that produced life by chance).
  • The solar system. Does the Solar Nebula Hypothesis explain the origin of our solar system, with its different planets and unique sun? Why is only the earth life friendly? Billions are spent to look for earth-like planets out there. It is reported that they find many. We are waiting for the observable proof that there is life on them.  We might wait for a very long time, because we are told God made only one, unique habitable planet.  In science fiction they travel quickly to other planets and meet the aliens. In real life it is more difficult, if not impossible.

 

Concerning prediction 2

The hope to prove that life created itself is like trying to reach the end of the rainbow. It remains elusive.

  • Scientists find additional complexity all the time, because of better scientific apparatus and methods. Science is a problem for evolution because it continually discovers more layers of complexity. That makes evolution even less possible. An example is DNA. Scientists realise that it is even more intricate than they thought initially. Instead of solving the problem of how things evolved, the problems increase. 2
  • Billions are and will be spent trying to solve the riddle of natural origins through evolution. Our prediction is that it will not be successful, because life is too unique. The side issues will be explained, but origins never.  That excludes the fact that propaganda for evolution improves all the time.

 

Question: We hear about long lists of earth-like planets, have any stood close scrutiny?

References

  1. Neil deGrasse Tyson: Enlightened religious people….don’t try to use the Bible as a textbook, Sarah Gray, Monday, March 10, 2014, http://www.salon.com/2014/93/10/neil_degrasse_tyson_enlightened_religious_people_dont_try_to_use_bible_as_textbook/
  2. Three More Codes in Nature to Decipher, Evolution News & Views, March 11, 2014, http://www.evolutionnews. org/2014/03/three_more_code083081.html