A Law of Inheritance

Then the daughters of Zelophehad, the son of Hepher, the son of Gilead, the son of Machir, the son of Manasseh, of the families of Manasseh the son of Joseph, came forward; and these are the names of his daughters: Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Tirzah. They stood before Moses, before Eleazar the priest, before the leaders, and all the congregation at the entrance of the tent of meeting, saying, “Our father died in the wilderness, yet he was not among the group of those who gathered together against the Lord, in the group of Korah; but he died in his own sin, and he had no sons. Why should the name of our father be withdrawn from among his family simply because he had no son? Give us property among our father’s brothers.” So Moses brought their case before the Lord.

Then the Lord said to [a]Moses, “The daughters of Zelophehad are right about their statements. You shall certainly give them hereditary property among their father’s brothers, and you shall transfer the inheritance of their father to them. Further, you shall speak to the sons of Israel, saying, ‘If a man dies and has no son, then you shall transfer his inheritance to his daughter. And if he has no daughter, then you shall give his inheritance to his brothers. 10 If he has no brothers, then you shall give his inheritance to his father’s brothers. 11 And if his father has no brothers, then you shall give his inheritance to his nearest relative in his own family, and he shall take possession of it; and it shall be a statutory ordinance to the sons of Israel, just as the Lord has commanded Moses.’”

12 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go up to this mountain of Abarim, and see the land which I have given to the sons of Israel. 13 When you have seen it, you too will be gathered to your people, just as Aaron your brother [b]was; 14 for in the wilderness of Zin, during the strife of the congregation, you rebelled against My [c]command to treat Me as holy before their eyes at the water.” (These are the waters of Meribah of Kadesh in the wilderness of Zin.)

Joshua to Succeed Moses

15 Then Moses spoke to the Lord, saying, 16 “May the Lord, the God of the spirits of [d]humanity, appoint a man over the congregation, 17 who will go out [e]and come in before them, and lead them out and [f]bring them in, so that the congregation of the Lord will not be like sheep that have no shepherd.” 18 So the Lord said to Moses, “[g]Take Joshua the son of Nun, a man in whom is the Spirit, and lay your hand on him; 19 and have him stand before Eleazar the priest and before all the congregation, and commission him in their sight. 20 And you shall put some of your [h]authority on him, so that all the congregation of the sons of Israel will obey him. 21 Moreover, he shall stand before Eleazar the priest, who shall inquire for him by the judgment of the Urim before the Lord. At his [i]command they shall go out, and at his [j]command they shall come in, both he and all the sons of Israel with him, all the congregation.” 22 Then Moses did just as the Lord commanded him; he took Joshua and had him stand before Eleazar the priest and before all the congregation. 23 Then he laid his hands on him and commissioned him, just as the Lord had spoken [k]through Moses.


  1. Numbers 27:6 Lit Moses, saying
  2. Numbers 27:13 Lit was gathered
  3. Numbers 27:14 Lit mouth
  4. Numbers 27:16 Lit all flesh
  5. Numbers 27:17 Lit before them and who will
  6. Numbers 27:17 Lit who will bring
  7. Numbers 27:18 Lit Take for yourself
  8. Numbers 27:20 Lit majesty
  9. Numbers 27:21 Lit mouth
  10. Numbers 27:21 Lit mouth
  11. Numbers 27:23 Lit by the hand of