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Inheritance Through Marriage

36 The leaders[a] of the families[b] of the clans of descendants[c] of Gilead the son of Makir, the son of Manasseh, of the clans of the descendants[d] of Joseph came near and spoke before[e] Moses and before[f] the leaders[g] of the families[h] of the Israelites.[i] And they said, “Yahweh commanded my lord to give the land by lot as an inheritance to the Israelites,[j] and my lord was commanded by Yahweh to give the inheritance of Zelophehad our brother to his daughters. But if they become wives to one of the sons from another tribe of the Israelites,[k] their inheritance will disappear from the inheritance of our ancestors,[l] and it will be added to the inheritance of the tribe to which they belong; the lot of our inheritance would disappear. When the Jubilee of the Israelites[m] comes,[n] it will be added to the inheritance of the tribe to which they belong; and their inheritance will disappear from the tribe of our father.”

Then Moses commanded the Israelites[o] by the command of Yahweh, saying, “The tribe of the descendants[p] of Joseph is right regarding what they are speaking. This is the word that Yahweh commanded the daughters of Zelophehad, saying, ‘Let them marry[q] whomever they like;[r] only they must marry[s] from within the clan of the tribe of their father. Thus an inheritance of the Israelites[t] will not go around from tribe to tribe. Rather, the inheritance of each tribe of his father will remain with the Israelites.[u] Every daughter who possesses an inheritance from the tribes of the Israelites[v] will marry[w] one of the clan of the tribe of her father, so that the Israelites[x] will possess the inheritance of his ancestors.[y] Therefore an inheritance will not go around from one tribe to another tribe because the tribes of the Israelites[z] will each hold to their own inheritance.’”

10 Just as Yahweh commanded to Moses, so the daughters of Zelophehad did: 11 Mahlah, Tirzah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Noah, the daughters of Zelophehad, married[aa] the sons of their uncles. 12 They married[ab] those from the sons of Manasseh son of Joseph, and their inheritance remained[ac] among the tribe of the clan of their ancestors.[ad]

13 These were the commands and the stipulations that Yahweh commanded by the hand of Moses[ae] to the Israelites[af] on the desert-plateaus of Moab by the Jordan across Jericho.


  1. Numbers 36:1 Literally “The heads”
  2. Numbers 36:1 Or “fathers”
  3. Numbers 36:1 Or “sons”
  4. Numbers 36:1 Or “sons”
  5. Numbers 36:1 Literally “before the face of”
  6. Numbers 36:1 Literally “before the face of”
  7. Numbers 36:1 Literally “the heads”
  8. Numbers 36:1 Hebrew “of the fathers”
  9. Numbers 36:1 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  10. Numbers 36:2 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  11. Numbers 36:3 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  12. Numbers 36:3 Or “fathers”
  13. Numbers 36:4 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  14. Numbers 36:4 Literally “will be”
  15. Numbers 36:5 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  16. Numbers 36:5 Or “sons”
  17. Numbers 36:6 Literally “Let them be as wives”
  18. Numbers 36:6 Literally “they will be as the good in their eyes”
  19. Numbers 36:6 Literally “they must be as wives”
  20. Numbers 36:7 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  21. Numbers 36:7 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  22. Numbers 36:8 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  23. Numbers 36:8 Literally “be a wife to”
  24. Numbers 36:8 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  25. Numbers 36:8 Or “fathers”
  26. Numbers 36:9 Literally “sons/children of Israel”
  27. Numbers 36:11 Literally “were as wives to”
  28. Numbers 36:12 Literally “They were as wives to”
  29. Numbers 36:12 Literally “was”
  30. Numbers 36:12 Or “fathers”
  31. Numbers 36:13 Or “through Moses”
  32. Numbers 36:13 Literally “sons/children of Israel”