Episode 29: Balak - Ma Tovu a Curse Becomes a blessing

Ma tovu….How great are your tents, O Jacob, your dwelling places, O Israel! These words are the opening lines of a prayer that many Jews say when entering a synagogue. These words appear in this week’s Torah Portion in Number 24:5. Where Balaam is sent to curse the Israelites. But instead, Balaam is overcome the awe and awesomeness of God and the Israelites' places of worship. Rashi says that Balaam is overcome by the modesty that the Israelites maintained while traveling in the desert. So even though Balaam was sent to curse the Israelites the words that come out of his mouth are actually a blessing a blessing of praise.