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Numbers 23

Numbers 23:1-30 . BALAK'S SACRIFICES.

13-15. Come, . . . with me unto another place, from whence thou mayest see them--Surprised and disappointed at this unexpected eulogy on Israel, Balak hoped that, if seen from a different point of observation, the prophet would give utterance to different feelings; and so, having made the same solemn preparations, Balaam retired, as before, to wait the divine afflatus.

14. he brought him into the field of Zophim . . . top of Pisgah--a flat surface on the summit of the mountain range, which was cultivated land. Others render it "the field of sentinels," an eminence where some of Balak's guards were posted to give signals [CALMET].

18, 19. Rise up--As Balak was already standing ( Numbers 23:17 ), this expression is equivalent to "now attend to me." The counsels and promises of God respecting Israel are unchangeable; and no attempt to prevail on Him to reverse them will succeed, as they may with a man.

21. He hath not beheld iniquity in Jacob--Many sins were observed and punished in this people. But no such universal and hopeless apostasy had as yet appeared, to induce God to abandon or destroy them.
the Lord his God is with him--has a favor for them.
and the shout of a king is among them--such joyful acclamations as of a people rejoicing in the presence of a victorious prince.

22. he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn--Israel is not as they were at the Exodus, a horde of poor, feeble, spiritless people, but powerful and invincible as a reem--that is, a rhinoceros ( Job 39:9 , Psalms 22:21 , 92:10 ).

23. Surely there is no enchantment against Jacob--No art can ever prevail against a people who are under the shield of Omnipotence, and for whom miracles have been and yet shall be performed, which will be a theme of admiration in succeeding ages.

26. All that the Lord speaketh, that I must do--a remarkable confession that he was divinely constrained to give utterances different from what it was his purpose and inclination to do.

28. Balak brought Balaam unto the top of Peor--or, Beth-peor ( Deuteronomy 3:29 ), the eminence on which a temple of Baal stood.
that looketh toward Jeshimon--the desert tract in the south of Palestine, on both sides of the Dead Sea.

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