My people, remember now what Balak king of Moab devised (plotted against you) and what (how) Balaam the son of Beor answered (responded to) him; from Shittim unto Gilgal, that ye may know (will recognize) the righteous acts of the LORD - Micah 6:5

First one needs to remember what was devised or plotted against us, secondly one should remember the way Balaam answered or responded. And this should lead to the knowledge and recognition of the righteous acts of the Lord.

But what exactly are we talking about?

  1. What part of the plot should one remember or learn from?
  2. Which part of the many words Balaam spoke or actions he performed should one keep in mind?
  3. What do the words Shettim and Gilgal refer to here?
  4. Last why do all of these lead to the knowledge of the righteous deeds of HaShem? (why the righteous deeds specifically).

Whats the deeper meaning of this advice to us?

  • I'm just making a semi-educated guess here, so I leave an official answer to the folks here with more knowledge of the commentaries, etc. The whole plot, a ruler paying a prophet to use supernatural means to curse and cause the downfall of the enemy, Israel, and having it turn out the exact opposite, due to HaShem's actions, from the ass speaking to the blessing instead of cursing, should be remembered. Deeper meaning? It seems to me to prove to Israel that if they keep faithful to HaShem and the Covenant, then "no weapon formed against you will prosper".
    – Gary
    Commented Jun 5, 2018 at 13:01
  • The rest of the recorded Biblical(and after) history just seems to reinforce this, as well as it's opposite. Faithful - HaShem will do miracles. Not faithful - HaShem will cause tragedies. The Blessing and the Curse. All depends on what the people do.
    – Gary
    Commented Jun 5, 2018 at 13:05

1 Answer 1


Mahri Kra explains:

1 - He advised the ministers of Moab and hired Balak to curse you

2 - Balak answered that he could only speak whatever G-d placed in his mouth

3 - The reference To Shitim and Gilgal refers to Balak's advice after he left Bilam when he suggested that he place them next to the whores of Moab who came to B'nai Yisra'el while they were settling in Shittim (See end of pasrhat Balak.)

4 - It's not specifically G-d's righteous deeds, "in isolation". It's connected to the list of items in the rest of the verse. I.e., when you ponder on all these horrible events that could have destroyed you, that alone suffices to recognize G-d's righteous deeds (in that He didn't allow any of them to succeed in your complete destruction.)

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