4/15 Joshua 13:22

22 Balaam also, the son of Beor, the one who practiced divination, was killed with the sword by the people of Israel among the rest of their slain.

Joshua was faithful to obey the Lord and conquer and destroy all the kings and their cities throughout the Promised Land. There was only a small portion left and the Lord promised to drive them out. The land was divided among the tribes of Israel. In the account of the division of the land, there is this note about Balaam. He was the one that tried to curse Israel but could only bless them. But because of his lust for money, he found another way. He advised the enemy king to seduce the men by sending in women. (Numbers 31:16) Then the women were to lead the men to worship idols. In that way, Balaam knew God would turn and fight against Israel.

Balaam was right. Sin separates us from God and invites judgment. Balaam surely got his financial gain. But Moses saw what was going on and the Lord put a stop to it with a plague. What good did that financial gain do for Balaam? Here was a man with a special gift to hear the voice of the LORD, yet he allowed his lust for wealth to compromise his desire to obey that voice.

Compromise always sounds like a good idea at the time. It sounds like we can have the best of both worlds. He wasn't literally doing what God told him not to do; he was just telling the enemy king how to fight spiritually against Israel. Then, in his mind he thought, he could have the money and still not personally curse Israel. To encourage another to sin is a sin. To encourage them to do what we know we are not to do involves us in their sin. The result was the judgment he deserved. Those who know God's will and turn against it are even more accountable than those who do not know.

Consider: Compromising our integrity is never a good idea. The thing we so desire will do nothing for us in eternity. Set your sights on what is lasting and pleasing to God.