1And the sons of Israel journey and encamp in the plains of Moab, beyond the Jordan, [by] Jericho.
2And Balak son of Zippor seeth all that Israel hath done to the Amorite,
3and Moab is exceedingly afraid of the presence of the people, for it [is] numerous; and Moab is vexed by the presence of the sons of Israel,
4and Moab saith unto the elders of Midian, ‘Now doth the assembly lick up all that is round about us, as the ox licketh up the green thing of the field.’ And Balak son of Zippor [is] king of Moab at that time,
5and he sendeth messengers unto Balaam son of Beor, to Pethor, which [is] by the River of the land of the sons of his people, to call for him, saying, ‘Lo, a people hath come out of Egypt; lo, it hath covered the eye of the land, and it is abiding over-against me;
6and now, come, I pray thee, curse for me this people, for it [is] mightier than I; it may be I prevail — we smite it — and I cast it out from the land; for I have known — that which thou blessest is blessed, and that which thou cursest is cursed.’
7And the elders of Moab and the elders of Midian go, and divinations in their hand, and they come in unto Balaam, and speak unto him the words of Balak,
8and he saith unto them, ‘Lodge here to-night, and I have brought you back word, as Jehovah speaketh unto me;’ and the princes of Moab abide with Balaam.
9And God cometh in unto Balaam, and saith, ‘Who [are] these men with thee?’
10And Balaam saith unto God, ‘Balak, son of Zippor, king of Moab, hath sent unto me:
11Lo, the people that is coming out from Egypt and covereth the eye of the land, — now come, pierce it for me; it may be I am able to fight against it, and have cast it out;’
12and God saith unto Balaam, ‘Thou dost not go with them; thou dost not curse the people; for it [is] blessed.’
13And Balaam riseth in the morning, and saith unto the princes of Balak, ‘Go unto your land, for Jehovah is refusing to suffer me to go with you;’
14and the princes of Moab rise, and come in unto Balak, and say, ‘Balaam is refusing to come with us.’
15And Balak addeth yet to send princes, more numerous and honoured than these,
16and they come in unto Balaam, and say to him, ‘Thus said Balak son of Zippor, Be not, I pray thee, withheld from coming unto me,
17for very greatly I honour thee, and all that thou sayest unto me I do; and come, I pray thee, pierce for me this people.’
18And Balaam answereth and saith unto the servants of Balak, ‘If Balak doth give to me the fulness of his house of silver and gold, I am not able to pass over the command of Jehovah my God, to do a little or a great thing;
19and, now, abide, I pray you, in this [place], you also, to-night; and I know what Jehovah is adding to speak with me.’
20And God cometh in unto Balaam, by night, and saith to him, ‘If to call for thee the men have come, rise, go with them, and only the thing which I speak unto thee — it thou dost do.’
21And Balaam riseth in the morning, and saddleth his ass, and goeth with the princes of Moab,
22and the anger of God burneth because he is going, and a messenger of Jehovah stationeth himself in the way for an adversary to him, and he is riding on his ass, and two of his servants [are] with him,
23and the ass seeth the messenger of Jehovah standing in the way, and his drawn sword in his hand, and the ass turneth aside out of the way, and goeth into a field, and Balaam smiteth the ass to turn it aside into the way.
24And the messenger of Jehovah standeth in a narrow path of the vineyards — a wall on this [side] and a wall on that —
25and the ass seeth the messenger of Jehovah, and is pressed unto the wall, and presseth Balaam's foot unto the wall, and he addeth to smite her;
26and the messenger of Jehovah addeth to pass over, and standeth in a strait place where there is no way to turn aside — right or left —
27and the ass seeth the messenger of Jehovah, and croucheth under Balaam, and the anger of Balaam burneth, and he smiteth the ass with a staff.
28And Jehovah openeth the mouth of the ass, and she saith to Balaam, ‘What have I done to thee that thou hast smitten me these three times?’
29and Balaam saith to the ass, ‘Because thou hast rolled thyself against me; oh that there were a sword in my hand, for now I had slain thee;’
30and the ass saith unto Balaam, ‘Am not I thine ass, upon which thou hast ridden since [I was] thine unto this day? have I at all been accustomed to do to thee thus?’ and he saith, ‘No.’
31And Jehovah uncovereth the eyes of Balaam, and he seeth the messenger of Jehovah standing in the way, and his drawn sword in his hand, and he boweth and doth obeisance, to his face;
32and the messenger of Jehovah saith unto him, ‘Wherefore hast thou smitten thine ass these three times? lo, I — I have come out for an adversary, for [thy] way hath been perverse before me,
33and the ass seeth me, and turneth aside at my presence these three times; unless she had turned aside from my presence, surely now also, thee I had slain, and her kept alive.’
34And Balaam saith unto the messenger of Jehovah, ‘I have sinned, for I did not know that thou [art] standing to meet me in the way; and now, if evil in thine eyes — I turn back by myself.’
35And the messenger of Jehovah saith unto Balaam, ‘Go with the men; and only the word which I speak unto thee — it thou dost speak;’ and Balaam goeth with the princes of Balak.
36And Balak heareth that Balaam hath come, and goeth out to meet him, unto a city of Moab, which [is] on the border of Arnon, which [is] in the extremity of the border;
37and Balak saith unto Balaam, ‘Did I not diligently sent unto thee to call for thee? why didst thou not come unto me? am I not truly able to honour thee?’
38And Balaam saith unto Balak, ‘Lo, I have come unto thee; now — am I at all able to speak anything? the word which God setteth in my mouth — it I do speak.’
39And Balaam goeth with Balak, and they come to Kirjath-Huzoth,
40and Balak sacrificeth oxen and sheep, and sendeth to Balaam, and to the princes who [are] with him;
41and it cometh to pass in the morning, that Balak taketh Balaam, and causeth him to go up the high places of Baal, and he seeth from thence the extremity of the people.