Numbers 27

Zelophehad's daughters

1 Then the daughters of Zelophehad, the son of Hepher, came to speak to Moses. Hepher was the son of Gilead, the son of Makir, the son of Manasseh, the son of Joseph. So Zelophehad belonged to the tribe of Manasseh. His daughters were called Mahlah, Noah, Hoglah, Milcah and Tirzah. 2 Moses, Eleazar the priest and all the leaders of the people were standing at the front of the Tent of Meeting. Zelophehad's daughters said to them, 3 ‘Our father died in the desert. But he was not in Korah's group of men who came together to speak against the Lord. He died in the desert because of his own sin, and he did not have any sons. 4 We are his daughters, so please give us some land along with our father's male relatives. Then people will not forget our father's family name.’

5 Moses asked the Lord about this. 6 The Lord said to Moses, 7 ‘What the daughters of Zelophehad said is right. You must give to them some of the land that their father's family will receive. Give to them the land that their father would have received.

8 Tell the Israelites this: “Sometimes a man only has daughters. When he dies, his daughters must receive what belongs to their family. 9 If he does not have any sons or daughters, you must give his family's land to his brothers. 10 If he does not have any brothers, you must give his land to his father's brothers. 11 Sometimes the man's father may have no brothers. If that happens, you must give his land to another person in his family. This is a rule for all the people. The Lord gave this command to Moses.” ’

Joshua is the new leader

12 The Lord said to Moses, ‘Go up to the top of the Abiram mountains. From there, look at the land that I am giving to the Israelites. 13 After that, you will die, just as your brother Aaron also died. 14 In the Zin desert, when the people turned against me, you did not obey my command. That happened when you hit the rock to get water at Meribah Kadesh. You did not show the people that I was holy, so now you will not go into the land of Canaan.’

15 Moses said to the Lord, 16 ‘You are the Lord, the God of the spirits of all people. Please choose another man to be leader over all the people. 17 He will lead them when they go out to fight, and he will bring them back safely. Then the Lord's people will not be like sheep who have no shepherd.’

18 The Lord replied to Moses, ‘Choose Joshua, the son of Nun. My Spirit is in him to help him lead well. Put your hand on him to take your place as leader. 19 He must stand in front of Eleazar the priest and in front of all the Israelites. Let all the people see that he is the new leader that I have chosen. 20 Tell the people that they must obey him, because he now has your authority. 21 Eleazar the priest will use the Urim to find out from me what Joshua should do. Then Joshua can tell the people when to go out to fight, and he can lead them safely back again. He will tell all the Israelite people what they must do.’

22 Moses did as the Lord told him. He brought Joshua to stand in front of Eleazar the priest and all the people. 23 He put his hands on Joshua to show that he would be the new leader. Moses gave his authority to Joshua, as the Lord had told him to do.