A prophet from Transjordan, retained by Balak to utter threats against the enemies of Moab. Although the legend of Num. 23–4 shows Balaam as obedient to the word of the Lord, elsewhere he was responsible for causing Israel to sin at Baal-peor (Num. 31: 16) and he becomes the very type of mercenary prophet who is hired to utter curses (2 Pet. 2: 15). Indeed the donkey on which he rode could see more clearly than the professional seer on his back (Num. 22: 33).