Today, I am reading and commenting on Numbers 30-31.
Having established that Joshua would be his successor, Moses ordered the Israelites to attack the Midianites from whom the women who seduced the Israelite men into idolatry had come. The fact that Balaam is listed as having been killed as part of this war lends support to the idea that he was not from near the Euphrates but was instead somewhat local. Of further interest is that the Midianite women started seducing Israelite men to worship Baal after Balaam had failed to curse the Israelites on behalf of the Moabite king. The final thing of note is that the Midianites were descended from Abraham through one of his sons by Keturah, whom he married after the death of Sarah.
The fact that Midianites were also descendants of Abraham explains how Moses’ father-in-law came to worship God and how Balaam came to his knowledge of God (assuming that Balaam was from nearby and a Midianite). It also provides further explanation for why archaeology shows so many similarities between the worship practices of the Israelites and their neighbors. The presence of the Midianites, the Ishmaelites, and the Edomites, as well as the descendants of Keturah’s other sons would have meant that there were a lot of people influenced by Abraham’s worship of God.