by Charles H. Spurgeon

The Daughters of Zelophehad: Women's Rights-A Parable
Charles H. Spurgeon
Numbers 27:5

And Moses brought their cause before the Lord.

By the help of God the Holy Spirit, I want to use this incident, which forms a kind of episode in the rehearsal of the history of Israel's forty years' wanderings in the wilderness, for a twofold purpose. First, let me indicate its general teaching; and, secondly, let me take it as a ground of appeal to certain special classes.

Its General Teaching

I would ask your attention and exhibit for your imitation, the faith which these five young women, the daughters of Zelophehad, possessed with regard to the promised inheritance. You must remember that the children of Israel were still in the wilderness. They had not seen the promised land, but God had made a covenant with them that they should possess it. He had declared that He would bring them into a land which flowed with milk and honey and there plant them and that that land should belong to them and to their descendants by a covenant of salt forever. Now these women believed in this heritage. They were not like Esau, who thought so little of the inheritance which was his birthright that he sold it to his brother Jacob for a mess of pottage, but they believed it to be really worth having. They regarded it, though they had never beheld it, as being something exceedingly substantial, and so looking upon it, they were afraid lest they should be left out when the land was divided. Though they had never seen it, yet, being persuaded that it was somewhere and the children of Israel would have it in due time, their anxiety was lest they, having no brothers, should be forgotten in the distribution and so should lose their rights. They were anxious about an inheritance which they had never seen with their eyes, and therein I hold them up to the imitation of this present assembly. There is an inheritance that is far better than the land of Canaan. Oh, that we all believed in it ...

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