Portions Library

A collection of essays on the weekly Torah Portions, from Genesis to Deuteronomy, adapted from Torah Club.

BalakRead / Listen to Portion


Never Argue with a Donkey

The Holy One, blessed be He, has consideration for the dignity of mankind and, knowing their weakness, He shut the mouth of beasts. For had they been able to speak, it would have been impossible to put them to the service of man or to stand one’s ground against them.

Life's Little Interruptions

People of faith sometimes speak of God opening doors. This is an idiom that refers to God's divine direction in life. Suppose a person set out to take a job in a certain field for which he was fully qualified. Inexplicably, he did not get the position. How does a person respond to that?

The Plot Against Israel

Balaam failed to curse Israel. Worse yet, he failed to win a large reward from Balak. Then a thought occurred to him. Perhaps he could not curse Israel, but he could induce Israel to curse themselves. In Numbers 31:16, we learn that he conspired with the Midianite and Moabite leaders and suggested a plan.

Shout of the King

Though we have not yet heard the shofar blast that will herald the coming of King Messiah, His trumpets are already resounding in our midst. Each time we blow the shofar on Rosh HaShanah, we rehearse the day of His coming. We may not hear the trumpets of Messiah yet, but the unseen world of spiritual darkness certainly does.