they went forward and encamped in the plains of Moab, over
against where Jericho is situate beyond the Jordan. And
Balac the son of Sephor, seeing all that Israel had done to
the Amorrhite, And that the Moabites were in great fear of
him, and were not able to sustain his assault, He said to
the elders of Madian: So will this people destroy all that
dwell in our borders, as the ox is wont to eat the grass to
the very roots.
he was at that time king in Moab. He sent therefore
messengers to Balaam the son of Beer, a soothsayer, who
dwelt by the river of the land of the children of Ammon, to
call him, and to say: Behold a people is come out of Egypt,
that hath covered the face of the earth, sitting over
against me. Come therefore, and curse this people, because
it is mightier than I: if by any means I may beat them and
drive them out of my land: for I know that he whom thou
shalt bless is blessed, and he whom thou shalt curse is
the ancients of Moab, and the elders of Madian, went with
the price of divination in their hands. And when they were
come to Balaam, and had told him all the words of Balac: He
answered: Tarry here this night, and I will answer
whatsoever the Lord shall say to me.
while they stayed with Balaam, God came and said to him:
What mean these men that are with thee? He answered: Balac
the son of Sephor king of the Moabites hath sent to me,
Saying: Behold a people that is come out of Egypt, hath
covered the face of the land: come and curse them, if by any
means I may fight with them and drive them away. And God
said to Balaam: Thou shalt not go with them, nor shalt thou
curse the people: because it is blessed.
he rose in the morning and said to the princes: Go into your
country, because the Lord hath forbid me to come with you.
princes returning, said to Balac: Balaam would not come with
us. Then he sent many more and more noble than he had sent
before: Who, when they were come to Balaam, said: Thus saith
Balac the son of Sephor, Delay not to come to me: For I am
ready to honour thee, and will give thee whatsoever thou
wilt: come and curse this people.
Balaam answered: If Balac would give me his house full of
silver and gold, I cannot alter the word of the Lord my God,
to speak either more or less. I pray you to stay here this
night also, that I may know what the Lord will answer me
therefore came to Balaam in the night, and said to him: If
these men be come to call thee, arise and go with them: yet
so, that thou do what I shall command thee.
Balaam arose in the morning, and saddling his ass went with
them. And God was angry. And an angel of the Lord stood in
the way against Balaam, who sat on the ass, and had two
servants with him. The ass seeing the angel standing in the
way, with a drawn sword, turned herself out of the way, and
went into the field. And when Balaam beat her, and had a
mind to bring her again to the way, The angel stood in a
narrow place between two walls, wherewith the vineyards were
enclosed. And the ass seeing him, thrust herself close to
the wall, and bruised the foot of the rider. But he beat her
again: And nevertheless the angel going on to a narrow
place, where there was no way to turn aside either to the
right hand or to the left, stood to meet him. And when the
ass saw the angel standing, she fell under the feet of the
rider: who being angry beat her sides more vehemently with a
staff. And the Lord opened the mouth of the ass, and she
said: What have I done to thee? Why strikest thou me, lo,
now this third time?
Balaam answered: Because thou hast deserved it, and hast
served me ill: I would I had a sword that I might kill thee.
ass said: Am not I thy beast, on which thou hast been always
accustomed to ride until this present day? tell me if I ever
did the like thing to thee.
he said: Never.
Forthwith the Lord opened the eyes of Balaam, and he saw the
angel standing in the way with a drawn sword, and he
worshipped him falling flat on the ground. And the angel
said to him: Why beatest thou thy ass these three times? I
am come to withstand thee, because thy way is perverse, and
contrary to me: And unless the ass had turned out of the
way, giving place to me who stood against thee, I had slain
thee, and she should have lived.
Balaam said: I have sinned, not knowing that thou didst
stand against me: and now if it displease thee that I go, I
will return. The angel said: Go with these men, and see thou
speak no other thing than what I shall command thee. He went
therefore with the princes.
when Balac heard it he came forth to meet him in a town of
the Moabites, that is situate in the uttermost borders of
Arnon. And he said to Balaam: I sent messengers to call
thee, why didst thou not come immediately to me? was it
because I am not able to reward thy coming?
answered him: Lo, here I am: shall I have power to speak any
other thing but that which God shall put in my mouth?
they went on together, and came into a city, that was in the
uttermost borders of his kingdom. And when Balac had killed
oxen and sheep, he sent presents to Balaam, and to the
princes that were with him.
when morning was come, he brought him to the high places of
Baal, and he beheld the uttermost part of the people.
Balaam said to Balac: Build me here seven altars, and
prepare as many calves, and the same number of rams. And
when he had done according to the word of Balaam, they laid
together a calf and a ram upon every altar.
Balaam said to Balac: Stand a while by thy burnt offering,
until I go, to see if perhaps the Lord will meet me, and
whatsoever he shall command, I will speak to thee.
when he was gone with speed, God met him. And Balaam
speaking to him, said: I have erected seven altars, and have
laid on everyone a calf and a ram.
the Lord put the word in his mouth, and said: Return to
Balac, and thus shalt thou speak.
Returning he found Balac standing by his burnt offering,
with all the princes of the Moabites: And taking up his
parable, he said: Balac king of the Moabites hath brought me
from Aram, from the mountains of the east: Come, said he,
and curse Jacob: make haste and detest Israel. How shall I
curse him, whom God hath not cursed? By what means should I
detest him, whom the Lord detesteth not? I shall see him
from the tops of the rocks, and shall consider him from the
hills. This people shall dwell alone, and shall not be
reckoned among the nations. Who can count the dust of Jacob,
and know the number of the stock of Israel? Let my soul die
the death of the just, and my last end be like to them.
Balac said to Balaam: What is this that thou dost? I sent
for thee to curse my enemies: and thou contrariwise blessest
answered him: Call I speak any thing else but what the Lord
Balac therefore said: Come with me to another place from
whence thou mayest see part of Israel, and canst not see
them all: curse them from thence. And when he had brought
him to a high place, upon the top of mount Phasga, Balaam
built seven altars, and laying on every one a calf and a
ram, He said to Balac: Stand here by thy burnt offering
while I go to meet him.
when the Lord had met him, and had put the word in his
mouth, he said: Return to Balac, and thus shalt thou say to
him. Returning he found him standing by his burnt sacrifice,
and the princes of the Moabites with him. And Balac said to
him: What hath the Lord spoken? But he taking up his
parable, said: Stand, O Balac, and give ear: hear, thou son
of Sephor: God is not a man, that he should lie, nor as the
son of man, that he should be changed. Hath he said then,
and will he not do? hath he spoken, and will he not fulfill?
I was brought to bless, the blessing I am not able to
There is no idol in Jacob, neither is there an image god to
be seen in Israel. The Lord his God is with him, and the
sound of the victory of the king in him. God hath brought
him out of Egypt, whose strength is like to the rhinoceros.
There is no soothsaying in Jacob, nor divination in Israel.
In their times it shall be told to Jacob and to Israel what
God hath wrought. Behold the people shall rise up as a
lioness, and shall lift itself up as a lion: it shall not
lie down till it devour the prey, and drink the blood of the
Balac said to Balaam: Neither curse, nor bless him.
he said: Did I not tell thee, that whatsoever God should
command me, that I would do?
Balac said to him: Come and I will bring thee to another
place; if peradventure it please God that thou mayest curse
them from thence.
when he had brought him upon the top of mount Phogor, which
looketh towards the wilderness, Balaam said to him: Build me
here seven altars, and prepare as many calves, and the same
number of rams. Balac did as Balaam had said: and he laid on
every altar, a calf and a ram.
when Balaam saw that it pleased the Lord that he should
bless Israel, he went not as he had gone before, to seek
divination: but setting his face towards the desert, And
lifting up his eyes, he saw Israel abiding in their tents by
their tribes: and the spirit of God rushing upon him, He
took up his parable and said: Balaam the son of Beor hath
said: The man hath said, whose eye ire stopped up: The
hearer of the words of God hath said, he that hath beheld
the vision of the Almighty, he that falleth, and so his eyes
are opened: How beautiful are thy tabernacles, O Jacob, and
thy tents, O Israel! As woody valleys, as watered gardens
near the rivers, as tabernacles which the Lord hath pitched,
as cedars by the waterside. Water shall flow out of his
bucket, and his seed shall be in many waters. For Agag his
king shall be removed, and his kingdom shall be taken awry.
God hath brought him out of Egypt, whose strength is like to
the rhinoceros. They shall devour the nations that are his
enemies, and break their bones, and pierce them with arrows.
Lying down he hath slept as a lion, and as a lioness, whom
none shall dare to rouse. He that blesseth thee, shall also
himself be blessed: he that curseth thee shall be reckoned
Balac being angry against Balaam, clapped his hands together
and said: I called thee to curse my enemies, and thou on the
contrary hast blessed them three times. Return to thy place.
I had determined indeed greatly to honour thee, but the Lord
hath deprived thee of the honour designed for thee.
Balaam made answer to Balac: Did I not say to thy
messengers, whom thou sentest to me: If Balac would give me
his house full of silver and gold, I cannot go beyond the
word of the Lord my God, to utter any thing of my own head
either good or evil: but whatsoever the Lord shall say, that
I will speak? But yet going to my people, I will give thee
counsel, what this people shall do to thy people in the
latter days. Therefore taking up his parable, again he said:
Balaam the son of Beor hath said: The man whose eye is
stopped up, hath said: The hearer of the words of God hath
said, who knoweth the doctrine of the Highest, and seeth the
visions of the Almighty, who falling hath his eyes opened: I
shall see him, but not now: I shall behold him, but not
near. A STAR SHALL RISE out of Jacob and a sceptre shall
spring up from Israel: and shall strike the chiefs of Moab,
and shall waste all the children of Seth. And he shall
possess Idumea: the inheritance of Seir shall come to their
enemies, but Israel shall do manfully. Out of Jacob shall he
come that shall rule, and shall destroy the remains of the
city. And when he saw Amalec, he took up his parable, and
said: Amalec the beginning of nations, whose latter ends
shall be destroyed.
saw also the Cinite: and took up his parable, and said: Thy
habitation indeed is strong: but though thou build thy nest
in a rock, And thou be chosen of the stock of Cin, how long
shalt thou be able to continue? For Assur shall take thee
taking up his parable, again he said: Alas, who shall live
when God shall do these things? They shall come in galleys
from Italy, they shall overcome the Assyrians, and shall
waste the Hebrews, and at the last they themselves also
shall perish. And Balaam rose, and returned to his place:
Balac also returned the way that he came.