Balaam's First Oracle

Numbers 23

1 Balaam said, "Build me seven altars here, and then prepare seven bulls and seven rams." 2 Balak did it. Then Balaam and Balak sacrificed a bull and a ram on each of the altars. 3 Balaam instructed Balak: "Stand watch here beside your Whole-Burnt-Offering while I go off by myself. Maybe God will come and meet with me. Whatever he shows or tells me, I'll report to you." Then he went off by himself. 4 God did meet with Balaam. Balaam said, "I've set up seven altars and offered a bull and a ram on each altar." 5 Then God gave Balaam a message: "Return to Balak and give him this message." 6 He went back and found him stationed beside his Whole-Burnt-Offering and with him all the nobles of Moab. Then Balaam spoke his message-oracle:
Balak led me here from Aram,
the king of Moab all the way from the eastern mountains.
"Go, curse Jacob for me;
go, damn Israel."
How can I curse whom God has not cursed?
How can I damn whom God has not damned?
From rock pinnacles I see them,
from hilltops I survey them:
Look! a people camping off by themselves,
thinking themselves outsiders among nations.
But who could ever count the dust of Jacob
or take a census of cloud-of-dust Israel?
I want to die like these right-living people!
I want an end just like theirs!

11 Balak said to Balaam, "What's this? I brought you here to curse my enemies, and all you've done is bless them." 12 Balaam answered, "Don't I have to be careful to say what God gives me to say?"

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