Verse 28 of Numbers 22 says that the donkey spoke to Balaam. I’ve never heard an animal speak, but I have to admit it is certainly an intriguing idea. Mr. Ed was a very popular TV series a long time ago because we were looking at things from the horse’s perspective. Talking animals is not unheard of in classical literature.  There was a common Jewish belief that before the fall, the beasts and man had a common speech.

One readily thinks in this connection of St. Francis of Assisi’s extraordinary rapport with birds. Also, C. S. Lewis’s Narnia books make the point about talking animals in a plausible way that reminds us we do not have sufficient knowledge about pre-fallen creation to dismiss the concept out of hand.

The point, however, is that the dumb donkey could see the presence of the supernatural while Balaam could not. Only the donkey could see the angel. Those whose hearts are set on sin and self-will won’t see the divine aspects of God’s presence in their lives. Our sin always separates us from our God. What a solemn reminder of what sin might do to our powers of spiritual perception.