"I shall see him, but not now; I shall behold him, but not nigh; there shall come a Star out of Jacob, and a Scepter shall rise out of Israel, and shall smite the corners of Moab, and destroy all the children of Sheth [= tumult/description of Moabites/world]" (Numbers 24:17).
Balaam the phony prophet is speaking. He was hired by Moab to curse Israel but instead he blesses and honors Israel and curses Moab. God put in Balaam's mouth the true Christmas message though Balaam was not a man of truth. God will not be stopped by Satan but will use, if he has to, the plans and actions of Satan to advance His purpose (Psalm 76:10). Balaam gets no credit for speaking a great prophecy here. God does not honor men like him even though they may speak His message (Matthew 7:22, 23). The term Star of Jacob speaks of the great Savior, Jesus Christ. When He came to earth, He was the "Star" of the show, to use present-day vernacular. Few recognized Him as the "Star" when He came as a babe in Bethlehem. "Star" gives us four lessons.
"Star." Stars are used to indicate rank. Those who have been in the military know that the highest ranking officers have stars on their uniforms. Christ is the Highest Rank of anyone. He is "King of kings and Lord of lords" (Revelation 19:16). No one on this earth is as higher ranked than Jesus Christ. In fact no one is even close to being equal with Christ. Remember that the next time their is a conflict between what others want you to do and what Christ wants you to do.
"Star." Stars speak of stability. We see the same stars that Abraham saw in his day when God told him to "look now toward heaven and tell [count] the stars, if thou be able to number them" (Genesis 15:5). The stability of Christ is seen in "Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today and forever" (Hebrews 13:8). The world has nothing comparable to rest upon. Christ is stability. We can trust in forever.
"Star." One cannot speak long about stars before someone brings up the influence of stars upon man. Astrology, however, is a bunch of nonsense; the horoscope predictions are unreliable, contradictory, and Satanic. But the influence of the Star of Jacob is not nonsense. He has made drunkards sober, harlots pure, thieves honest, liars true, gamblers godly and the haughty humble. His influence is unmatched.
"Star." For centuries men on land and in the air and especially on the seas have used stars to guide them. The stars can be used because they are reliable. No one can guide us better than Jesus Christ. He is reliable. No one was ever led into the shame of sin by the Savior. That is not true of the Hollywood stars. We have many corrupt stars around today which lead men astray. But Christ, like the stars above, is a guide for us. It is the Christmas gift of truth and righteousness.