The Land of Zelophehad’s Daughters
1Manasseh was Joseph’s son. Makir was Manasseh’s son. Gilead was Makir’s son. The leaders of Gilead’s family went to talk to Moses and the leaders of the tribes of Israel. 2They said, “Sir, the Lord commanded us to get our land by throwing lots. And sir, the Lord commanded that the land of Zelophehad our brother be given to his daughters. 3Maybe a man from one of the other tribes will marry one of Zelophehad’s daughters. Will that land leave our family? Will the people of that other tribe get the land? Will we lose the land that we got by throwing lots? 4People might sell their land, but in the Jubilee year, all the land is returned to the tribe that really owns it. At that time who will get the land that belongs to Zelophehad’s daughters? Will our tribe lose that land forever?”
5Moses gave this command from the Lord to the Israelites: “These men from the tribe of Joseph are right. 6This is the Lord’s command to Zelophehad’s daughters: If you want to marry someone, you must marry someone from your own tribe. 7In this way land will not be passed from tribe to tribe among the Israelites. Each Israelite will keep the land that belonged to their own ancestors. 8And if a woman gets her father’s land, she must marry someone from her own tribe. That way everyone will keep the land that belonged to his ancestors. 9So the land must not be passed from tribe to tribe among the Israelites. Each Israelite will keep the land that belonged to their own ancestors.”
10So Zelophehad’s daughters obeyed the Lord’s command to Moses. 11Zelophehad’s daughters—Mahlah, Tirzah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Noah—married their cousins on their father’s side of the family. 12Their husbands were from Manasseh’s family groups, so their land remained within their father’s family group and tribe.
13So these are the laws and commands that the Lord gave to Moses in the Jordan Valley in Moab by the Jordan River, across from Jericho.