Balaam the son of Beor hath said, and the man whose eyes are open hath said: He hath said, which heard the words of God, which saw the vision of the Almighty, falling into a trance, but having his eyes open:
How goodly are thy tents, O Jacob, and thy tabernacles, O Israel!
As the valleys are they spread forth, as gardens by the river’s side,
as the trees of lign aloes which the Lord hath planted,
and as cedar trees beside the waters.
He shall pour the water out of his buckets,
and his seed shall be in many waters,
and his king shall be higher than Agag, and his kingdom shall be exalted.
God brought him forth out of Egypt;
he hath as it were the strength of an unicorn:
he shall eat up the nations his enemies, and shall break their bones,
and pierce them through with his arrows.
He couched, he lay down as a lion, and as a great lion:who shall stir him up?
Blessed is he that blesseth thee, and cursed is he that curseth thee. (Numbers 23:4-9)
Balak, the king of the Moabites had high expectations when he hired the renowned Seer from the Euphrates to curse Israel. But in spite of the preparation; the sacrifices, altars, the use of the sacred number seven and the discerned favorable locations, when Balaam stood up to curse Israel, only blessings would come out. Each time, the blessings increased in intensity, and in woe upon Israel’s foes.
Perhaps they would find success from another location. So the camp was again struck, and the trek was made to mount Peor, where an auspicious location was found to set up the seven stone altars, for the sacrifice of seven bulls and rams each.
But by this time the Seer realized that the God of Israel was not a god that required the seeking of omens or auguries, as he had attempted in the two previous prophecies. This is a God who cannot be manipulated by ‘prophets’ such as himself, but one who reveals Himself on His own terms.
Balaam surrendered himself temporarily , as a tool of the Holy Ghost.
And when Balaam saw that it pleased the Lord to bless Israel, he went not, as at other times, to seek for enchantments, but he set his face toward the wilderness. And Balaam lifted up his eyes, and he saw Israel abiding in his tents according to their tribes; and the spirit of God came upon him. (Numbers 23:1-2)
The Scripture makes note of the sight of the tents of Israel. From this particular aspect, Balaam would have been seeing the layout of the whole camp of the Holy people. At the center was the Tabernacle, overshadowed by the glory of God in the form of a pillar of cloud and fire.
Projecting from that center in the four directions of the earth, would have been four straight lines of thousands of rows of tents, Three tribes to the North, three to the South, and three each to the east and the west. Balaam would have been looking down upon a huge cross!
His prophecy likened the camp of Israel to a well-ordered, irrigated , and fruitful garden. Such are the people whom God has chosen, and transplanted, and set aside for cultivation by His word and watered by his Spirit!
They would fill the land with fruit, they would flow like swollen streams, sprouting the healing Aloes, and nurturing majestic Cedars. The people of Israel would become like an Aloe plant, they would grow as a Cedar, because of the water source they draw from.
Israel would become like a water carrier, whose buckets constantly overflow, spilling and making everything green, refreshing everyone, and overflowing in blessing to all. The seed of Israel would be spread throughout all of the waters, blessing the whole world!
All of this blessing is traceable to the salvation purchased by the blood of the Lamb, when He brought this people out of Egypt.
This redeemed slave nation would have a King far greater than Agag, which was the title for the Amalekite rulers, like Pharoah and Caesar. The King Messiah, will ultimately prevail over the final Agag, the antichrist who stands as representative for all gentile opposition to God and his purposes.
To further this point, Balaam prophesied that Israel would be like the unicorn,( the aurochs), a great horned , wild ox , raging against and trampling all of her enemies, breaking their bones and finishing them off with arrows.
The Spirit likened Israel also to a lion, as in the last prophecy. This time the Lion is lying down, sated, it has triumphed and eaten its fill, but woe to the one who rouses him! It is interesting that this is very similar to the prophecy Jacob gave to his son Judah,
Judah is a lion’s whelp: from the prey, my son, thou art gone up: he stooped down, he couched as a lion, and as an old lion; who shall rouse him up?(Genesis 49:9)
Finally the Spirit reiterates the warning to the fool’s errand that Balaam and Balak have undertaken, by quoting in part, the blessing and cursing of Genesis 12,
Blessed is he that blesseth thee, and cursed is he that curseth thee.
Oh that our current crop of rulers and leaders, Sheiks, presidents and Kings all would take heed and establish this as their own foreign policy! God doesn’t lie.