The seventh Torah Portion of the book of B’midbar/Numbers is Balak, which means “Devestator.” This is the 40th Torah Portion.
Torah Portion: Numbers 22:2 – 25:9
Haftorah Portions: Micah 5:6- 6:8
Apostolic Writings: 2 Peter 2:1-22
You can read or listen to the Haftarah and Apostolic portions below:
Micah 5:6- 6:8
Then the remnant of Ya‘akov, surrounded by many peoples, will be like dew from HaShem, like showers on the grass, which doesn’t wait for a man or expect anything from mortals. The remnant of Ya‘akov among the nations, surrounded by many peoples, will be like a lion among forest animals, like a young lion among flocks of sheep — if it passes through, tramples and tears to pieces, there is no one to rescue them. Your hand will be raised over your enemies; all your adversaries will be destroyed. “When that day comes,” says HaShem, “I will cut off your horses from among you and destroy your chariots. I will cut off the cities of your land and lay waste your strongholds. I will cut off sorceries from your land; you will no longer have soothsayers. I will cut off your carved images and standing-stones from among you; no longer will you worship what your own hands have made. I will pull up your sacred poles from among you and destroy your enemies. I will wreak vengeance in anger and fury on the nations, because they would not listen.”
So listen now to what HaShem says: “Stand up and state your case to the mountains, let the hills hear what you have to say.” Listen, mountains, to HaShem’s case; also you enduring rocks that support the earth! HaShem has a case against his people; he wants to argue it out with Isra’el: “My people, what have I done to you? How have I wearied you? Answer me! I brought you up from the land of Egypt. I redeemed you from a life of slavery. I sent Moshe, Aharon and Miryam to lead you. My people, just remember what Balak the king of Mo’av had planned, what Bil‘am the son of B‘or answered him, [and what happened] between Sheetim and Gilgal — so that you will understand the saving deeds of HaShem.” “With what can I come before HaShem to bow down before G-d on high? Should I come before him with burnt offerings? with calves in their first year? Would HaShem take delight in thousands of rams with ten thousand rivers of olive oil? Could I give my firstborn to pay for my crimes, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul?” Human being, you have already been told what is good, what HaShem demands of you — no more than to act justly, love grace and walk in purity with your G-d.
2 Peter 2:1-22
But among the people there were also false prophets, just as there will be false teachers among you. Under false pretenses they will introduce destructive heresies, even denying the Master who bought them, and thus bring on themselves swift destruction. Many will follow their debaucheries; and because of them, the true Way will be maligned. In their greed they will exploit you with fabricated stories. Their punishment, decreed long ago, is not idle; their destruction is not asleep! For G-d did not spare the angels who sinned; on the contrary, he put them in gloomy dungeons lower than Sh’ol to be held for judgment. And he did not spare the ancient world; on the contrary, he preserved Noach, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, and brought the Flood upon a world of ungodly people. And he condemned the cities of S’dom and ‘Amora, reducing them to ashes and ruin, as a warning to those in the future who would live ungodly lives; but he rescued Lot, a righteous man who was distressed by the debauchery of those unprincipled people; for the wicked deeds which that righteous man saw and heard, as he lived among them, tormented his righteous heart day after day. So the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials and how to hold the wicked until the Day of Judgment while continuing to punish them, especially those who follow their old natures in lust for filth and who despise authority. Presumptuous and self-willed, these false teachers do not tremble at insulting angelic beings; whereas angels, though stronger and more powerful, do not bring before the Lord an insulting charge against them. But these people, acting without thinking, like animals without reason, born to be captured and destroyed, insult things about which they have no knowledge. When they are destroyed, their destruction will be total — they will be paid back harm as wages for the harm they are doing. Their idea of pleasure is carousing in broad daylight; they are spots and defects reveling in their deceptions as they share meals with you — for they have eyes always on the lookout for a woman who will commit adultery, eyes that never stop sinning; and they have a heart that has exercised itself in greed; so that they seduce unstable people. What a cursed brood! These people have left the straight way and wandered off to follow the way of Bil‘am Ben-B‘or, who loved the wages of doing harm but was rebuked for his sin — a dumb beast of burden spoke out with a human voice and restrained the prophet’s insanity! Waterless springs they are, mists driven by a gust of wind; for them has been reserved the blackest darkness. Mouthing grandiosities of nothingness, they play on the desires of the old nature, in order to seduce with debaucheries people who have just begun to escape from those whose way of life is wrong. They promise them freedom, but they themselves are slaves of corruption; for a person is slave to whatever has defeated him. Indeed, if they have once escaped the pollutions of the world through knowing our Lord and Deliverer, Yeshua the Messiah, and then have again become entangled and defeated by them, their latter condition has become worse than their former. It would have been better for them not to have known the Way of righteousness than, fully knowing, to turn from the holy command delivered to them. What has happened to them accords with the true proverb, “A dog returns to its own vomit.” Yes, “The pig washed itself, only to wallow in the mud!”