The sacrifices of Balaam and Balak (Num 23:1-23:3)

“Then Balaam said to Balak, ‘Build me seven altars here, and prepare seven bulls and seven rams for me.’ Balak did as Balaam had said. Balak and Balaam offered a bull and a ram on each altar. Then Balaam said to Balak, ‘Stay here beside your burnt offerings while I go aside. Perhaps Yahweh will come to meet me. Whatever he shows me I will tell you.’ He went to a flat bare hill.”  

Balaam asked Balak to build seven altars, with seven bulls and seven rams. Balak did exactly that and offered a bull and a ram on each altar, so that it was seven bulls and seven rams on seven altars. Balaam said to Balak that he was going to meet Yahweh to find out what will come next. Notice that the sacrifices are similar to the burnt holocausts of Israel. Either this was common in the area or an Israelite projection on the Moabites.

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