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  Discovery Box

Numbers 35:34--36:5

Context
35:34 Therefore do not defile the land that you will inhabit, in which I live, for I the Lord live among the Israelites.”

Women and Land Inheritance

36:1 Then the heads of the family groups 1  of the Gileadites, the descendant of Machir, the descendant of Manasseh, who were from the Josephite families, approached and spoke before Moses 2  and the leaders who were the heads of the Israelite families. 3  36:2 They said, “The Lord commanded my lord to give 4  the land as an inheritance by lot to the Israelites; and my lord was commanded by the Lord to give the inheritance of our brother Zelophehad to his daughters. 36:3 Now if they should be married to one of the men 5  from another Israelite tribe, their inheritance would be taken from the inheritance of our fathers and added to the inheritance of the tribe into which they marry. 6  As a result, it will be taken from the lot of our inheritance. 36:4 And when the Jubilee of the Israelites is to take place, 7  their inheritance will be added to the inheritance of the tribe into which they marry. So their inheritance will be taken away from the inheritance of our ancestral tribe.” 8 

Moses’ Decision

36:5 Then Moses gave a ruling 9  to the Israelites by the word 10  of the Lord: “What the tribe of the Josephites is saying is right.

1 tn The expression is “the heads of the fathers by the family of the Gileadites.”

2 tn The Greek and the Syriac add “and before Eleazar the priest.”

3 tn Heb “heads of the fathers.”

4 tn The infinitive construct “to give” serves here as the complement or object of the verb, answering what the Lord had commanded Moses.

5 tn “Men” is understood; it says “to one from the sons of the tribes of the Israelites for a wife,” or if he has her for a wife.

6 tn Heb “which they will be to them,” meaning, to those who have them, i.e., the marriages.

7 tn The verb הָיָה (hayah) is most often translated “to be,” but it can also mean “to happen, to take place, to come to pass,” etc.

8 tn Heb “the tribe of our fathers.”

9 tn Heb “commanded.”

10 tn Heb “mouth.”



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