Sunday, April 26, 2009

Rivers of Blessing

5 How lovely are your tents, O Jacob,
your encampments, O Israel!
6 Like palm groves that stretch afar,
like gardens beside a river,
like cedar trees beside the waters.
Numbers 24:5-6

Rivers of Blessing

The Bible verses shown above were spoken by Balaam, when Balak called him to curse the Israelites. Instead, Balaam could speak nothing but blessings to the Israelites because God's hand was upon Him, preventing him from issuing curses.

Rivers are often used in blessings; the imagery given above is truly beautiful. Four comparisons are made. The Israelites camps were:

*Like palm groves that stretch afar.
*Like gardens beside a river.
*Like aloes that the Lord has planted.
*Like cedar trees beside the waters.

Did you notice that two of these blessings involve rivers or water? I can just imagine the beautiful gardens beside the river, can't you? The ever present water will keep the leaves and blossoms from withering or dying, producing beautiful blooming shrubs and flowers. Can you also see the thriving cedar trees shooting their great trunks up to heaven in praise to their creator?

Just as God blessed the camps of the Israelites, so, too, does he bless the "camps" of His children today. As we think of these picturesque settings, we are reminded that God has placed such beauty in the world to remind us of the beauty of the the new heavens and new earth to come.

Sometimes, it is good just to sit down and reflect upon God's creation, which thrives in beauty, totally oblivious to the problems of life we seem to face every day.

God Bless You,

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