Vol. 5, No. 8
~ Page 14 ~
The love of money is the root of all evil (1 Timothy 6:10). There is an event in the history of Israel during the forty years they spent in the wilderness that is familiar to all good Bible students. Balak, King of Moab, sought the services of the prophet Balaam. Balaam was offered a huge sum of money to curse the children of Israel. He found the offer quite appealing. The story is well known because Balaam's donkey is said to have talked (Numbers 22:21-30).
What I find most striking about the whole incident is Balaam's response to the messengers of Balak. He said, "Even if Balak gave me his palace filled with silver and gold, I could not do anything great or small to go beyond the command of the Lord my God" (Numbers 22:18). As the story unfolds, it becomes clear that Balaam would have liked to curse Israel, but God would not allow it. Balaam could have been bought had God not prevented it. I have heard it said that for enough money a man could be persuaded to do anything. I don't believe it, though in Balaam's case it was probably true!
Jesus raised this question: "What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?" (Matthew 16:26). No amount of money can compensate for the loss of a soul! Yet, folks sometimes sell out for next to nothing. Men have ruined their lives and jeopardized their souls for a few dollars.