Then Balak the son of Zippor, the king of Moab, arose
Being alarmed with what Israel had done to the two kings of the Amorites, and by their near approach to the borders of his kingdom:
and warred against Israel;
he fully designed it, and purpose is put for action, as Kimchi observes; he prepared for it, proclaimed war, and commenced it, though he did not come to a battle, he made use of stratagems and wiles, and magical arts, to hurt them, and sent for Balaam to curse them, that they both together might smite the Israelites, and drive them out of the land, ( Numbers 22:6 ) ; so his fighting is interpreted by the next clause:
and sent and called Balaam the son of Beor to curse you;
by which means he hoped to prevail in battle, and get the victory over them; but not being able to bring this about, durst not engage in battle with them.