27 1-2 One day the daughters of Zelophehad came to the entrance of the Tabernacle to give a petition to Moses, Eleazar the priest, the tribal leaders, and others who were there. The names of these women were Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Tirzah. They were members of the half-tribe of Manasseh (a son of Joseph). Their ancestor was Machir, son of Manasseh. Manasseh’s son Gilead was their great-grandfather, his son Hepher was their grandfather, and his son Zelophehad was their father.
3-4 “Our father died in the wilderness,” they said, “and he was not one of those who perished in Korah’s revolt against the Lord—it was a natural death, but he had no sons. Why should the name of our father disappear just because he had no son? We feel that we should be given property along with our father’s brothers.”
5 So Moses brought their case before the Lord.
6-7 And the Lord replied to Moses, “The daughters of Zelophehad are correct. Give them land along with their uncles; give them the property that would have been given to their father if he had lived. 8 Moreover, this is a general law among you, that if a man dies and has no sons, then his inheritance shall be passed on to his daughters. 9 And if he has no daughter, it shall belong to his brothers. 10 And if he has no brother, then it shall go to his uncles. 11 But if he has no uncles, then it shall go to the nearest relative.”
12 One day the Lord said to Moses, “Go up into Mount Abarim and look across the river to the land I have given to the people of Israel. 13 After you have seen it, you shall die as Aaron your brother did, 14 for you rebelled against my instructions in the wilderness of Zin. When the people of Israel rebelled, you did not glorify me[a] before them by following my instructions to order water to come out of the rock.” He was referring to the incident at the waters of Meribah (“Place of Strife”) in Kadesh, in the wilderness of Zin.
15 Then Moses said to the Lord, 16 “O Jehovah, the God of the spirits of all mankind, before I am taken away[b] please appoint a new leader for the people, 17 a man who will lead them into battle and care for them, so that the people of the Lord will not be as sheep without a shepherd.”
18 The Lord replied, “Go and get Joshua (son of Nun), who has the Spirit in him, 19 and take him to Eleazar the priest, and as all the people watch, charge him with the responsibility of leading the people. 20 Publicly give him your authority so that all the people of Israel will obey him. 21 He shall be the one to consult with Eleazar the priest in order to get directions from the Lord. The Lord will speak to Eleazar through the use of the Urim, and Eleazar will pass on these instructions to Joshua and the people. In this way the Lord will continue to give them guidance.”
22 So Moses did as Jehovah commanded and took Joshua to Eleazar the priest. As the people watched, 23 Moses laid his hands upon him and dedicated him to his responsibilities, as the Lord had commanded.