1: And Balaam said to Balak, “Build me here seven altars, and prepare me here seven oxen and seven rams.”
2: And Balak did according to what Balaam had spoken; and Balak and Balaam offered up on every altar a bullock and a ram.
3: And Balaam said to Balak, “Stand by your burnt offering, and I will go: perhaps the Lord will come to meet me (in a neutral sense, Heb. kâr‘â): and whatsoever He shows me I will tell you.” And he went alone to an high place.
4: And God met Balaam (in a hostile sense, Heb. kârah): and he (Balaam) said to him, “I have prepared seven altars, and I have offered upon every altar a bullock and a ram.”
5: And the Lord put a word in Balaam's mouth (this is inspiration), and said, “Return to Balak, and thus you shall speak.”
6: And he (Balaam) returned to him (Balak), and, lo, he stood by his burnt sacrifice, he, and all the princes of Moab.
z c 7. Balak's wish. d 8. Israel immune from man's cursing. d 9,10-. Israel excluded from man's reckoning. c -10. Balaam's wish.
7: And he took up his parable, and said, “Balak the king of Moab has brought me from Aram, Out of the mountains of the east, saying, ‘Come, curse for me Jacob (Heb. ‘ârar, see 22:6 & 11), and come, defy Israel.’
8: How shall I revile, whom God has not cursed? (to pierce with words) Or how shall I be enraged with, whom the Lord has not been enraged with?
9: For from the top of the rocks I see him, And from the hills I behold him: Lo, the People shall dwell alone, and shall not be reckoned among the nations (therefore cannot be in judgment of Matt. 25, or confused wth "the Gentiles, or with the church of God" 1 Cor.10:32).
10: Who can count the dust of Jacob, And the number of the fourth part of Israel?
Let me die the death of the righteous (to die the death of the righteous one must have righteousness of the righteous), And let my latter end be like his! (i.e. issue or reward.)
11: And Balak said to Balaam, “What have you done to me? I took you to pierce with words my enemies, and, behold, you have blessed them altogether.”
12: And he answered and said, “Must I not take heed to speak that which the Lord has put in my mouth?”
13: And Balak said to him, “Come, I pray you, with me to another place, from which place you may see them: you shall see but the utmost part of them, and shall not see them all: and pierce them with words for me them from that place.”
14: And he brought him into the field of Zophim (= dusky-place), to the top of Pisgah (= a cleft), and built seven altars, and offered a bullock and a ram on every altar.
15: And he said to Balak, “Stand here by your burnt offering, while I meet the Lord yonder.” (in a neutral sense)
16: And the Lord met Balaam (in a hostile sense), and put a word in his mouth, and said, “Go again to Balak, and say thus.”
17: And when he came to him, behold, he stood by his burnt offering, and the princes of Moab with him. And Balak said to him, “What has the Lord spoken?”
z e¹ 18-20. God's immutable purpose. e² 21-24. Israel's immutable priviledges.
e¹ f¹ 18,19. God's nature unchangeable. f² 20. God's Word irreversible.
18: And he took up his parable, and said, “Rise up, Balak, and hear; Listen to me, you son of Zippor:
19: GOD (Eng. = God Almighty) is not a man, that He should lie; Neither the son of man, that He should repent: Has He said, and shall He not do it? or has He spoken, and shall He not make it good?
20: Behold, I have received commandment to bless: and He has blessed (Sept. reads, "I will bless"); And I cannot reverse it.
e² g i 21-. Negative. Absence of iniquity. k -21,22-. Positive. Presence of God. h -22. Strength (Simile: Buffalo). g i 23-. Negative. Powerlessness of enemies. k -23. Positive. Power of God. h 4. Victor (Simile: Lion.)
21: He has not beheld trespass in Jacob, Neither has He seen trouble in Israel (Heb. ’amal, also labor, toil. Sin viewed in light of the trouble it causes; and of its burden; and its grievousness. Often rendered perverseness, also mischief):
the Lord his God is with him, And the shout of a king is among them.
22: GOD (El) brought them out of Egypt;
He hath as it were the strength (= heights or heaps of. Heb.tô‘apth. Only here, Job 22:25 [plenty], and Ps.95:4 [= heights]) of a rhinoceros (the Heb. is revêm, could also be the buffalo or antelope: always entered "unicorn" in A.V.).
23: Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob, Neither is there any divination against Israel:
According to this time it shall be said of Jacob and of Israel, What has GOD wrought!
24: Behold, the People shall rise up as a great lion, and lift up himself as a young lion: He shall not lie down until he eat of the prey, And drink the blood of the slain.”
25: And Balak said to Balaam, “Neither pierce them with words at all, nor bless them at all.”
26: But Balaam answered and said to Balak, “Did I not tell you, saying, ‘All that the Lord speaks, that I must do?’ ”
t² l 23:27,28. Station: Peor. m 23:29,30. Offerings. n 24:1. Non-departure. o 2. Spirit upon Balaam. p 3-25. His Third and Fourth Parables.
27: And Balak said to Balaam, “Come, I pray you, I will bring you to another place; perhaps it will please God that you may pierce with word for me them from that place.”
28: And Balak brought Balaam to the top of Peor (= cleft), that looks toward Jeshimon (= the wilderness, desolation).
29: And Balaam said to 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 a bullock and a ram on every altar.