1Isra’el stayed at Sheetim, and there the people began whoring with the women of Mo’av. 2These women invited the people to the sacrifices of their gods, where the people ate and bowed down to their gods. 3With Isra’el thus joined to Ba‘al-P‘or, the anger of Adonai blazed up against Isra’el.
4Adonai said to Moshe, “Take all the chiefs of the people, and hang them facing the sun before Adonai, so that the raging fury of Adonai will turn away from Isra’el.” 5Moshe said to the judges of Isra’el, “Each of you is to put to death those in his tribe who have joined themselves to Ba‘al-P‘or.”
6Just then, in the sight of Moshe and the whole community of Isra’el, as they were weeping at the entrance to the tent of meeting, a man from Isra’el came by, bringing to his family a woman from Midyan. (Maftir) 7When Pinchas the son of El‘azar, the son of Aharon the cohen, saw it, he got up from the middle of the crowd, took a spear in his hand, 8and pursued the man from Isra’el right into the inner part of the tent, where he thrust his spear through both of them — the man from Isra’el and the woman through her stomach. Thus was the plague among the people of Isra’el stopped; 9nevertheless, 24,000 died in the plague.
Haftarah Balak: Mikhah (Micah) 5:6(7)– 6:8
B’rit Hadashah suggested readings for Parashah Balak: 2 Kefa (2 Peter) 2:1–22; Y’hudah (Jude) 11; Revelation 2:14–15
Parashah 41: Pinchas (Phinehas) 25:10 –30:1(29:40)
10Adonai said to Moshe, 11“Pinchas the son of El‘azar, the son of Aharon the cohen, has deflected my anger from the people of Isra’el by being as zealous as I am, so that I didn’t destroy them in my own zeal. 12Therefore say, ‘I am giving him my covenant of shalom, 13making a covenant with him and his descendants after him that the office of cohen will be theirs forever.’ This is because he was zealous on behalf of his God and made atonement for the people of Isra’el.”
14The name of the man from Isra’el who was killed, put to death with the woman from Midyan, was Zimri the son of Salu, leader of one of the clans from the tribe of Shim‘on. 15The name of the woman from Midyan who was killed was Kozbi the daughter of Tzur, and he was head of the people in one of the clans of Midyan.
16Adonai said to Moshe, 17“Treat the Midyanim as enemies and attack them; 18because they are treating you as enemies by the trickery they used to deceive you in the P‘or incident and in the affair of their sister Kozbi, the daughter of the leader from Midyan, the woman who was killed on the day of the plague in the P‘or incident.” 19After the plague,