Divrei Hayamim I – Seven: Zelophehad Throwback

Now we have the list of most of the lesser-known sons and tribes of Israel. One of the genealogies that we are given is that of Manasseh, which includes the lineage of Zelophehad, father of my favorite biblical feminists. “And Machir took a wife of Huppim and of Shuppim, and the name of his sister was Maacah, and the name of the second was Zelophehad, and Zelophehad had daughters (Chronicles I 7:15).” This throwback to the story of Zelophehad’s daughters is a welcome reminder of these heroines, but is also causing me to question what exactly the purpose of this particular book of Tanakh is. So far all I’ve had are lists of names, mostly obscure ones, and now we’re essentially having one-verse remakes of dramas and stories from earlier texts. I’m not clear on what this is meant to teach, but can definitely say that I’m not surprised this book isn’t widely studied. If I’m setting up for multiple months of this, it’s going to be a long – and sadly dull – end to this project.

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