The Bible and Its Story Taught by
One Thousand Picture Lessons, vol. 1. edited by Charles F. Horne and
Julius A. Bewer. 1908.
The daughters of Zelophehad ask for some land in Canaan
Zelophehad was a descendant of
Joseph. He was from the tribe of Joseph’s son, Manasseh. Zelophehad had five
daughters and no sons. The daughters' names were Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah, and Tirzah.
They came to talk to Moses and Eleazar the priest.
 Then came 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: and these are the names of his daughters; Mahlah, Noah, and Hoglah, and Milcah, and Tirzah.
 And they stood before Moses, and before Eleazar the priest, and before the princes and all the congregation, by the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, saying,
The daughters told Moses about their father. Zelophehad died in the desert. But he died before the other Israelites sinned. Zelophehad did not sin. He was not one of the people who refused to go into Canaan.
 Our father died in the wilderness, and he was not in the company of them that gathered themselves together against the LORD in the company of Korah; but died in his own sin, and had no sons.
Zelophehad did not have any sons. Sons carried the father's name. Sons got the family's land. The daughters said that in a few years, no one would remember Zelophehad's name. In Canaan, the other men in Zelophehad's father's family (Zelophehad's nephews) will get land. The daughters asked for part of the land, too.
 Why should the name of our father be done away from among his family, because he hath no son? Give unto us therefore a possession among the brethren of our father.
Moses talked with God about this request. God said yes. The daughters can have some of their father's family's land.
 And Moses brought their cause before the LORD.
 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
 The daughters of Zelophehad speak right: thou shalt surely give them a possession of an inheritance among their father's brethren; and thou shalt cause the inheritance of their father to pass unto them.
The land for the daughters of Zelophehad
The leaders of the tribe of Manasseh came to talk to Moses. They talked about the land that the daughters of Zelophehad would get. They were worried about what would happen to the land when the girls got married.
 And the chief fathers of the families
of the children of Gilead, the son of Machir, the son of Manasseh, of the
families of the sons of Joseph, came near, and spake before Moses, and before
the princes, the chief fathers of the children of Israel:
 And they said, The LORD commanded my lord to give the land for an inheritance by lot to the children of Israel: and my lord was commanded by the LORD to give the inheritance of Zelophehad our brother unto his daughters.
If the girls married men from other tribes, their land would then belong to their husband’s tribe. In the year of jubilee, the land would go back to the husband’s tribe, not the tribe of Manasseh.
 And if they be married to any of the sons of the other tribes of the children of Israel, then shall their inheritance be taken from the inheritance of our fathers, and shall be put to the inheritance of the tribe whereunto they are received: so shall it be taken from the lot of our inheritance.
 And when the jubile of the children of Israel shall be, then shall their inheritance be put unto the inheritance of the tribe whereunto they are received: so shall their inheritance be taken away from the inheritance of the tribe of our fathers.
God told Moses what to
tell the men from the tribe of Manasseh. They were right about this. God said
that the daughters of Zelophehad could only marry men from their own tribe. Then
their land would stay in the tribe of Manasseh.
 And Moses commanded the children of Israel according to the word of the LORD, saying, The tribe of the sons of Joseph hath said well.
 This is the thing which the LORD doth command concerning the daughters of Zelophehad, saying, Let them marry to whom they think best; only to the family of the tribe of their father shall they marry.
 So shall not the inheritance of the children of Israel remove from tribe to tribe: for every one of the children of Israel shall keep himself to the inheritance of the tribe of his fathers.
Daughters who owned land
should marry men from their own tribe only. Then the land inheritance would stay
in the family. The land should not be switched to another tribe.
 And every daughter, that possesseth an inheritance in any tribe of the children of Israel, shall be wife unto one of the family of the tribe of her father, that the children of Israel may enjoy every man the inheritance of his fathers.
 Neither shall the inheritance remove from one tribe to another tribe; but every one of the tribes of the children of Israel shall keep himself to his own inheritance.
Zelophehad’s daughters did what God told them to do. They married their cousins. The land stayed in the tribe of Manasseh.
 Even as the LORD commanded Moses, so did the daughters of Zelophehad:
 For Mahlal, Tirzah, and Hoglah, and Milcah, and Noah, the daughters of Zelophehad, were married unto their father's brothers' sons:
 And they were married into the families of the sons of Manasseh the son of Joseph, and their inheritance remained in the tribe of the family of their father.