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Bible Commentaries
Numbers 36

Trapp's Complete CommentaryTrapp's Commentary

Verse 1

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 spake before Moses. — Who was their common oracle to inquire of in all doubtful cases. Like as at Rome, C. Scipio Nasica, whom the senate, by way of honour, called Optimus, had a house in the high street assigned him at the public charge, Quo faeilius consuli posset, that any man might go to him for counsel. And surely, as the Roman general never miscarried so long as he followed the advice of Polybius, his historian; so neither did or could this people do amiss, if ruled by Moses, who was the mouth of God. Numbers 36:5

Verse 6

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.

To whom they think best. — See Genesis 24:57-58 , See Trapp on " Genesis 24:57 " See Trapp on " Genesis 24:58 "

Verse 7

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.

Shall keep himself to the inheritance. — This was an excellent law to cut off quarrels, strifes, and law suits, and to frustrate those qui latrocinia intra moenia exercent, as Columella said of the lawyers of his time.

Verse 11

For Mahlah, Tirzah, and Hoglah, and Milcah, and Noah, the daughters of Zelophehad, were married unto their father’s brothers’ sons:

For Mahlah, Tirzah, and Hoglah, … — The name of these virgins, as one interpreter Mr Ainsworth. elsewhere observeth, seem to be not without mystery. For Zelophehad, by interpretation, signifieth the shadow of fear or of dread: his first daughter, Mahlah, infirmity; the second, Noah, wandering; the third, Hoglah, turning about for joy, or dancing; the fourth, Milcah, a queen; the fifth, Tirzah, well-pleasing, or acceptable. By these names we may observe the degrees of our reviving by grace in Christ; for we all are born, as of the shadow of fear, being brought forth in sin, and "for fear of death were all our lifetime subject to bondage." Hebrews 2:15 This begetteth infirmity, or sickness, grief of heart for our estate. After which, wandering abroad for help and comfort, we find it in Christ, by whom our "sorrow is turned into joy." He communicates to us of his royalty, making us "kings and priests unto God his Father"; and we shall be presented unto him glorious, "and without blemish." Ephesians 5:27 So the Church is beautiful as Tirzah. Song of Solomon 6:4

Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Numbers 36". Trapp's Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jtc/numbers-36.html. 1865-1868.
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