Balaam mysterious prophet of the bible


Balaam was a prophet in biblical times spoken of in the book of numbers. He played a crucial role in the story of Israel before they settled in the promised land. I wonder though, who was he. Where did he come from. He is from the biblical account one who communicated with God on a regular basis. His story can be found in the book of numbers 22-24

The first mention of Baalam comes in number 22:5

 He sent messengers therefore unto Balaam the son of Beor to Pethor, which is by the river of the land of the children of his people, to call him, saying, Behold, there is a people come out from Egypt: behold, they cover the face of the earth, and they abide over against me:

we learn he is the son of Beor to Pethor. I don’t know who that is at all however so this does not give me much info of who he is. We know that he lived in the kingdom of Balak and was considered a Prophet of God. Moab was afraid of Israel and had asked Balaam to curse them

Come now therefore, I pray thee, curse me this people; for they are too mighty for me: peradventure I shall prevail, that we may smite them, and that I may drive them out of the land: for I wot that he whom thou blessest is blessed, and he whom thou cursest is cursed. However he refused to do so. He was bribed and offered all kinds of riches.

He seemed to be a pretty decent guy all around. He played a key role in Israel’s encounters on the way to the promised land. He drops in and vanishes from the story rather quickly.

Of course the best part of his story is the story of the talking donkey.

25 And when the ass saw the angel of the Lord, she thrust herself unto the wall, and crushed Balaam’s foot against the wall: and he smote her again.

 26 And the angel of the Lord went further, and stood in a narrow place, where was no way to turn either to the right hand or to the left.

 27 And when the ass saw the angel of the Lord, she fell down under Balaam: and Balaam’s anger was kindled, and he smote the ass with a staff.

 28 And the Lord opened the mouth of the ass, and she said unto Balaam, What have I done unto thee, that thou hast smitten me these three times?

 29 And Balaam said unto the ass, Because thou hast mocked me: I would there were a sword in mine hand, for now would I kill thee.

 30 And the ass said unto Balaam, Am not I thine ass, upon which thou hast ridden ever since I was thine unto this day? was I ever wont to do so unto thee? And he said, Nay.

 31 Then the Lord opened the eyes of Balaam, and he saw the angel of the Lord standing in the way, and his sword drawn in his hand: and he bowed down his head, and fell flat on his face.

His story is not without it’s humor.

I can’t help but wonder, who was he? and where did he come from. I can’t seem to find any connection with Israel other than he was there when they showed up. He is reported to be A man of God but from another culture. I’m sure God called many people from all over the world to speak for him. I wonder however who he was and what his connection to Israel is.

What about you. Are they any mysterious characters in the Bible you want to know more about. Let me know.


By Andrew McLean Posted in Orginals