Numbers 36:11
For Mahlah, Tirzah, and Hoglah, and Milcah, and Noah, the daughters of Zelophehad, were married unto their father's brothers' sons:
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(11) Were married unto their father’s brothers’ sons.—Better, unto the sons of their near kinsmen. The word dod generally denotes an uncle on the father’s side, and probably does so in the present case; but in Jeremiah 32:12 it seems to denote a cousin.

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36:5-12 Those who consult the oracles of God, concerning the making of their heavenly inheritance sure, shall not only be directed what to do, but their inquiries shall be graciously accepted. God would not have one tribe enriched at the expense of another. Each tribe was to keep to its own inheritance. The daughters of Zelophehad submitted to this appointment. How could they fail to marry well, when God himself directed them? Let the people of God learn how suitable and proper it is, like the daughters of Israel, to be united only to their own people. Ought not every true believer Israel, to be united only to their own people. Ought not every true believer in Jesus, to be very attentive in the near and tender relations of life, to be united only to such as are united to the Lord? All our intentions and inclinations ought to be subjected to the will of God, when that is made known to us, and especially in contracting marriage. Although the word of God allows affection and preference in this important relation, it does not sanction that foolish, ungovernable, and idolatrous passion, which cares not what may be the end; but in defiance of authority, determines upon self-gratification. All such conduct, however disguised, is against common sense, the interests of society, the happiness of the marriage relation, and, what is still more evil, against the religion of Christ.Unto their father's brothers' sons - Or more generally, "unto the sons of their kinsmen."5-12. Moses commanded the children of Israel according to the word of the Lord—The plea appeared just and reasonable; and, accordingly an enactment was made by which the daughters of Zelophehad, while left to the free choice of their husbands, were restricted to marry not only within their own tribe, but within the family of their father's tribe—that is, one of their cousins. This restriction, however, was imposed only on those who were heiresses. The law was not applicable to daughters in different circumstances (1Ch 23:22)—for they might marry into another tribe; but if they did so, they were liable to forfeit their patrimonial inheritance, which, on the death of their father or brothers, went to the nearest of the family kinsmen. Here was an instance of progressive legislation (see also Ex 18:27) in Israel, the enactments made being suggested by circumstances. But it is deserving of special notice that those additions to, or modifications of, the law were confined to civil affairs; while the slightest change was inadmissible in the laws relating to worship or the maintenance of religion. It is certain whether brothers or sons be taken strictly and properly, or more large, as those words are oft used in Scripture.

For Mahlah, Tirzah, and Hoglah, and Milcah, and Noah,.... The names of the daughters of Zelophehad, and the same as in Numbers 26:33, only the order a little varied, Tirzah and Noah here changing places; there they are according to their birth, here they are according to their marriage, as Aben Ezra thinks; though Jarchi is of opinion, that being thus differently placed shows that they were equal to one another, and one was not preferred to the other:

these were married unto their father's brothers' sons; so that they were first cousins.

For Mahlah, Tirzah, and Hoglah, and Milcah, and Noah, the daughters of Zelophehad, were married unto their father's brothers' sons:
11. In accordance with the law, the five women were married to the sons of their paternal uncles.

Verse 11. - Mahlah, &c. It is a curious instance of the inartificial character of the sacred records that these five names, which have not the least interest in themselves, are repeated thrice in this Book, and once in Joshua (Joshua 17:3). It is evident that the case made a deep impression upon the mind of the nation at the time. Their father's brothers' sons. The Hebrew word דּוד is always translated "father's brother," or "uncle;" and that seems to be its ordinary meaning, although in Jeremiah 32:12 it stands for uncle's son. There is no reason to depart from the customary reading here. No doubt the daughters of Zelophehad acted according to the spirit as well as the letter of the law, and married the nearest male relatives who were open to their choice. The Septuagint Numbers 36:11In Numbers 36:10-12 it is related that, in accordance with these instructions, the five daughters of Zelophehad, whose names are repeated from Numbers 26:33 and Numbers 27:1 (see also Joshua 17:3), married husbands from the families of the Manassites, namely, sons of their cousins (? uncles), and thus their inheritance remained in their father's tribe (על היה, to be and remain upon anything).
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