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Numbers 27 Living Bible (TLB)

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.”

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. 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. 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.


  1. Numbers 27:14 you did not glorify me, implied.
  2. Numbers 27:16 before I am taken away, implied.
Living Bible (TLB)

The Living Bible copyright © 1971 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

Numbers 27 New International Version (NIV)

Zelophehad’s Daughters

27 The daughters of Zelophehad son of Hepher, the son of Gilead, the son of Makir, the son of Manasseh, belonged to the clans of Manasseh son of Joseph. The names of the daughters were Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milkah and Tirzah. They came forward and stood before Moses, Eleazar the priest, the leaders and the whole assembly at the entrance to the tent of meeting and said, “Our father died in the wilderness. He was not among Korah’s followers, who banded together against the Lord, but he died for his own sin and left no sons. Why should our father’s name disappear from his clan because he had no son? Give us property among our father’s relatives.”

So Moses brought their case before the Lord, and the Lord said to him, “What Zelophehad’s daughters are saying is right. You must certainly give them property as an inheritance among their father’s relatives and give their father’s inheritance to them.

“Say to the Israelites, ‘If a man dies and leaves no son, give his inheritance to his daughter. If he has no daughter, give his inheritance to his brothers. 10 If he has no brothers, give his inheritance to his father’s brothers. 11 If his father had no brothers, give his inheritance to the nearest relative in his clan, that he may possess it. This is to have the force of law for the Israelites, as the Lord commanded Moses.’”

Joshua to Succeed Moses

12 Then the Lord said to Moses, “Go up this mountain in the Abarim Range and see the land I have given the Israelites. 13 After you have seen it, you too will be gathered to your people, as your brother Aaron was, 14 for when the community rebelled at the waters in the Desert of Zin, both of you disobeyed my command to honor me as holy before their eyes.” (These were the waters of Meribah Kadesh, in the Desert of Zin.)

15 Moses said to the Lord, 16 “May the Lord, the God who gives breath to all living things, appoint someone over this community 17 to go out and come in before them, one who will lead them out and bring them in, so the Lord’s people will not be like sheep without a shepherd.”

18 So the Lord said to Moses, “Take Joshua son of Nun, a man in whom is the spirit of leadership,[a] and lay your hand on him. 19 Have him stand before Eleazar the priest and the entire assembly and commission him in their presence. 20 Give him some of your authority so the whole Israelite community will obey him. 21 He is to stand before Eleazar the priest, who will obtain decisions for him by inquiring of the Urim before the Lord. At his command he and the entire community of the Israelites will go out, and at his command they will come in.”

22 Moses did as the Lord commanded him. He took Joshua and had him stand before Eleazar the priest and the whole assembly. 23 Then he laid his hands on him and commissioned him, as the Lord instructed through Moses.


  1. Numbers 27:18 Or the Spirit
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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