There have been several versions of the classic story “Dr. Dolittle” over the years. My favorite was the version with Rex Harrison back in 1967. In this version of the story, we learn that Dr. Dolittle used to be a Dr. to humans. He tended not to like humans. One day after a series of bad incidents with humans he learns from his parrot that can speak English that she can speak over 2000 animal languages. He asks her if she will teach him to talk to the animals. She agrees. From then on out he began his study of animal languages and doctoring the animals instead. I have often wondered what my animals are thinking. It seems like it would be great fun to hold a conversation with them. However it might be kind of a weird all at the same time. After all, animals see us all the time as we really are. We let our guard down with our pets all the time. What would they tell us?
We started the story of Balaam yesterday. Today we take off where we left off in Numbers 22.
20 God came to Balaam at night and said to him, “Since these men have come to summon you, get up and go with them, but you must only do what I tell you.” 21 When he got up in the morning, Balaam saddled his donkey and went with the officials of Moab. 22 But God was incensed that Balaam was going, and the Angel of the LORD took His stand on the path to oppose him. Balaam was riding his donkey, and his two servants were with him. 23 When the donkey saw the Angel of the LORD standing on the path with a drawn sword in His hand, she turned off the path and went into the field. So Balaam hit her to return her to the path. 24 Then the Angel of the LORD stood in a narrow passage between the vineyards, with a stone wall on either side. 25 The donkey saw the Angel of the LORD and pressed herself against the wall, squeezing Balaam’s foot against it. So he hit her once again. 26 The Angel of the LORD went ahead and stood in a narrow place where there was no room to turn to the right or the left. 27 When the donkey saw the Angel of the LORD, she crouched down under Balaam. So he became furious and beat the donkey with his stick. 28 Then the LORD opened the donkey’s mouth, and she asked Balaam, “What have I done to you that you have beaten me these three times?” 29 Balaam answered the donkey, “You made me look like a fool. If I had a sword in my hand, I’d kill you now!” 30 But the donkey said, “Am I not the donkey you’ve ridden all your life until today? Have I ever treated you this way before?” “No,” he replied. 31 Then the LORD opened Balaam’s eyes, and he saw the Angel of the LORD standing in the path with a drawn sword in His hand. Balaam knelt and bowed with his face to the ground.
We can gain some good instructions from this part of Balaam’s story. Yesterday we saw that Balaam hung around with temptation. He was told to not go with Balak’s officials and not to curse God’s people. Instead he let Balak’s officials spend the night so he could ask God again. God understands Balaam’s temptation issue. I think he responds to Balaam’s request to go again with a green light to test Balaam’s faithfulness and obedience. You would think Balaam might say, “Why are you letting me go now, when you told me not to go before God?” Instead we just see him hop on his donkey and head out. We see in this Biblical account a faithful donkey who had more spiritual insight than Balaam. The donkey could see more than Balaam could spiritually. The donkey knew that God did not want them to go further and that their lives were at risk. I think one of the things we need to ask God to do for us on a regular basis is to have Him open our eyes spiritually so we might see what we need to see. We need to see what He sees in people. We need to see Him at work in the World. We need to see where He wants us to join Him in His work. We need to see where the spiritual dangers are, etc.
So ask God to open your spiritual eyes so you can see clearly.