You gotta love talking donkeys. From Winnie the Pooh’s pessimistic pal, Eeyore, to Quick Draw McGraw’s cartoon sidekick, Baba Looey, and of course the donkey in the movie, Shrek, with his positive, sensitive, talkative personality, and whose favorite food is Waffles! Donkeys....they make us smile.
Of course, donkeys can’t really talk!… or can they?
The Israelites were being led into the Promised Land by God and were commanded by God to destroy all of the current residents of that land. They had just finished their task of wiping out the Amorites and the Moabites were next. The people of Moab were terrified because there were so many Israelites. In fact, Moab was filled with panic because of the people of Israel.
Balak was the king of Moab, at the time. He was going to pay Balaam to put a curse on the Israelites. He asked for Balaam to come meet him. Balaam rode a donkey to go meet Balak. An angel of the Lord appeared to the donkey on his way, 3 times. Each time the donkey saw the angel and tried to turn away. He knew the Lord was against Balak. Each time the donkey turned away, Balaam beat the donkey to try to keep him moving forward. After the third time, the Lord opened the donkey's mouth and he talked to Balaam. It said to Balaam, “What have I done to you? Why did you hit me those three times?” The donkey and Balaam then have a conversation. Balaam sees the error of his ways and vows to say only what the Lord tells him to say.
This silly donkey knew better than Balaam to listen to God. In this story, we learn that God is a faithful God who keeps his promises. He made a covenant with Israel, and he kept it. We also learn that God can use anyone EVEN a donkey and a rebellious prophet to do his will and speak His truth and..... donkeys are a dependable source of transportation.