February 21 Reading – Numbers 23-25
Read our Numbers 23-25 commentary here.
Numbers 23 ASV
1 And Balaam said unto Balak, Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven bullocks and seven rams.
2 And Balak did as Balaam had spoken; and Balak and Balaam offered on every altar a bullock and a ram.
3 And Balaam said unto Balak, Stand by thy burnt-offering, and I will go: peradventure Jehovah will come to meet me; and whatsoever he showeth me I will tell thee. And he went to a bare height.
4 And God met Balaam: and he said unto him, I have prepared the seven altars, and I have offered up a bullock and a ram on every altar.
5 And Jehovah put a word in Balaam’s mouth, and said, Return unto Balak, and thus thou shalt speak.
6 And he returned unto him, and, lo, he was standing by his burnt-offering, he, and all the princes of Moab.
7 And he took up his parable, and said, From Aram hath Balak brought me, The king of Moab from the mountains of the East: Come, curse me Jacob, And come, defy Israel.
8 How shall I curse, whom God hath not cursed? And how shall I defy, whom Jehovah hath not defied?
9 For from the top of the rocks I see him, And from the hills I behold him: lo, it is a people that dwelleth alone, And shall not be reckoned among the nations.
10 Who can count the dust of Jacob, Or number the fourth part of Israel? Let me die the death of the righteous, And let my last end be like his!
11 And Balak said unto Balaam, What hast thou done unto me? I took thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast blessed them altogether.
12 And he answered and said, Must I not take heed to speak that which Jehovah putteth in my mouth?
13 And Balak said unto him, Come, I pray thee, with me unto another place, from whence thou mayest see them; thou shalt see but the utmost part of them, and shalt not see them all: and curse me them from thence.
14 And he took him into the field of Zophim, to the top of Pisgah, and built seven altars, and offered up a bullock and a ram on every altar.
15 And he said unto Balak, Stand here by thy burnt-offering, while I meet Jehovah yonder.
16 And Jehovah met Balaam, and put a word in his mouth, and said, Return unto Balak, and thus shalt thou speak.
17 And he came to him, and, lo, he was standing by his burnt-offering, and the princes of Moab with him. And Balak said unto him, What hath Jehovah spoken?
18 And he took up his parable, and said, Rise up, Balak, and hear; Hearken unto me, thou son of Zippor:
19 God is not a man, that he should lie, Neither the son of man, that he should repent: Hath he said, and will he not do it? Or hath he spoken, and will he not make it good?
20 Behold, I have received commandment to bless: And he hath blessed, and I cannot reverse it.
21 He hath not beheld iniquity in Jacob; Neither hath he seen perverseness in Israel: Jehovah his God is with him, And the shout of a king is among them.
22 God bringeth them forth out of Egypt; He hath as it were the strength of the wild-ox.
23 Surely there is no enchantment with Jacob; Neither is there any divination with Israel: Now shalt it be said of Jacob and of Israel, What hath God wrought!
24 Behold, the people riseth up as a lioness, And as a lion doth he lift himself up: He shall not lie down until he eat of the prey, And drink the blood of the slain.
25 And Balak said unto Balaam, Neither curse them at all, nor bless them at all.
26 But Balaam answered and said unto Balak, Told not I thee, saying, All that Jehovah speaketh, that I must do?
27 And Balak said unto Balaam, Come now, I will take thee unto another place; peradventure it will please God that thou mayest curse me them from thence.
28 And Balak took Balaam unto the top of Peor, that looketh down upon the desert.
29 And Balaam said unto Balak, Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven bullocks and seven rams.
30 And Balak did as Balaam had said, and offered up a bullock and a ram on every altar.
1 And when Balaam saw that it pleased Jehovah to bless Israel, he went not, as at the other times, to meet with enchantments, but he set his face toward the wilderness.
2 And Balaam lifted up his eyes, and he saw Israel dwelling according to their tribes; and the Spirit of God came upon him.
3 And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor saith, And the man whose eye was closed saith;
4 He saith, who heareth the words of God, Who seeth the vision of the Almighty, Falling down, and having his eyes open:
5 How goodly are thy tents, O Jacob, Thy tabernacles, O Israel!
6 As valleys are they spread forth, As gardens by the river-side, As lign-aloes which Jehovah hath planted, As cedar-trees beside the waters.
7 Water shall flow from his buckets, And his seed shall be in many waters, And his king shall be higher than Agag, And his kingdom shall be exalted.
8 God bringeth him forth out of Egypt; He hath as it were the strength of the wild-ox: He shall eat up the nations his adversaries, And shall break their bones in pieces, And smite them through with his arrows.
9 He couched, he lay down as a lion, And as a lioness; who shall rouse him up? Blessed be every one that blesseth thee, And cursed be every one that curseth thee.
10 And Balak’s anger was kindled against Balaam, and he smote his hands together; and Balak said unto Balaam, I called thee to curse mine enemies, and, behold, thou hast altogether blessed them these three times.
11 Therefore now flee thou to thy place: I thought to promote thee unto great honor; but, lo, Jehovah hath kept thee back from honor.
12 And Balaam said unto Balak, Spake I not also to thy messengers that thou sentest unto me, saying,
13 If Balak would give me his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the word of Jehovah, to do either good or bad of mine own mind; what Jehovah speaketh, that will I speak?
14 And now, behold, I go unto my people: come, and I will advertise thee what this people shall do to thy people in the latter days.
15 And he took up his parable, and said, Balaam the son of Beor saith, And the man whose eye was closed saith;
16 He saith, who heareth the words of God, And knoweth the knowledge of the Most High, Who seeth the vision of the Almighty, Falling down, and having his eyes open:
17 I see him, but not now; I behold him, but not nigh: There shall come forth a star out of Jacob, And a sceptre shall rise out of Israel, And shall smite through the corners of Moab, And break down all the sons of tumult.
18 And Edom shall be a possession, Seir also shall be a possession, who were his enemies; While Israel doeth valiantly.
19 And out of Jacob shall one have dominion, And shall destroy the remnant from the city.
20 And he looked on Amalek, and took up his parable, and said, Amalek was the first of the nations; But his latter end shall come to destruction.
21 And he looked on the Kenite, and took up his parable, and said, Strong is thy dwelling-place, And thy nest is set in the rock.
22 Nevertheless Kain shall be wasted, Until Asshur shall carry thee away captive.
23 And he took up his parable, and said, Alas, who shall live when God doeth this?
24 But ships shall come from the coast of Kittim, And they shall afflict Asshur, and shall afflict Eber; And he also shall come to destruction.
25 And Balaam rose up, and went and returned to his place; and Balak also went his way.
1 And Israel abode in Shittim; and the people began to play the harlot with the daughters of Moab:
2 for they called the people unto the sacrifices of their gods; and the people did eat, and bowed down to their gods.
3 And Israel joined himself unto Baal-peor: and the anger of Jehovah was kindled against Israel.
4 And Jehovah said unto Moses, Take all the chiefs of the people, and hang them up unto Jehovah before the sun, that the fierce anger of Jehovah may turn away from Israel.
5 And Moses said unto the judges of Israel, Slay ye every one his men that have joined themselves unto Baal-peor.
6 And, behold, one of the children of Israel came and brought unto his brethren a Midianitish woman in the sight of Moses, and in the sight of all the congregation of the children of Israel, while they were weeping at the door of the tent of meeting.
7 And when Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, saw it, he rose up from the midst of the congregation, and took a spear in his hand;
8 and he went after the man of Israel into the pavilion, and thrust both of them through, the man of Israel, and the woman through her body. So the plague was stayed from the children of Israel.
9 And those that died by the plague were twenty and four thousand.
10 And Jehovah spake unto Moses, saying,
11 Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron the priest, hath turned my wrath away from the children of Israel, in that he was jealous with my jealousy among them, so that I consumed not the children of Israel in my jealousy.
12 Wherefore say, Behold, I give unto him my covenant of peace:
13 and it shall be unto him, and to his seed after him, the covenant of an everlasting priesthood; because he was jealous for his God, and made atonement for the children of Israel.
14 Now the name of the man of Israel that was slain, who was slain with the Midianitish woman, was Zimri, the son of Salu, a prince of a fathers’ house among the Simeonites.
15 And the name of the Midianitish woman that was slain was Cozbi, the daughter of Zur; he was head of the people of a fathers’ house in Midian.
16 And Jehovah spake unto Moses, saying,
17 Vex the Midianites, and smite them;
18 for they vex you with their wiles, wherewith they have beguiled you in the matter of Peor, and in the matter of Cozbi, the daughter of the prince of Midian, their sister, who was slain on the day of the plague in the matter of Peor.
American Standard Version (ASV): Public Domain