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(Bible) Old Testament a Mesopotamian diviner who, when summoned to curse the Israelites, prophesied future glories for them instead, after being reproached by his ass (Numbers 22–23)


(ˈbeɪ ləm)

a Mesopotamian diviner who, when commanded to curse the Israelites, blessed them instead after being rebuked by the ass he rode. Num. 22–23.
References in periodicals archive ?
Near the end of the reading, there is a verse which reads “When Balak [King of Moab] heard that Bil'am was coming, he went out to meet him to the city of Moab, which is on the boundary of Arnon, at the very edge of the boundary.
8220;For most of the Torah portion, Balak is trying to get Bil'am to curse the Jewish people,” as Yonatan goes on to explain.
It was during this period that Bil'am, the gentile prophet, came to curse the nation of Israel, and ended up praising them.