Where Every Jew is Family

The First Woman…


Well, actually, the first 5 women.  In last week and this week’s parsha, we learn about the daughters of Tzelofchad.  Their story was very unique.  You see, their father was killed and had no male progeny.  Instead, he had 5 daughters (just like my in-laws :-P).  They argued to Moses that since they have no brothers, the inheritance should go to them.  Moses says, “Good point, I’ll ask G-d.”  G-d confirm their argument, but they should marry within their own tribe to secure their inheritance.

There are a couple of things I would like to point out.

First and foremost is that there are many times we are in a situation that is somewhat irregular and we are unsure of how to proceed.  We may feel that it should be a certain way even though it seems unorthodox (pardon the expression).  When we face this kind of scenario, it’s important that we don’t just rely on our own understanding of the situation.  They went to Moses and asked if they were correct.

Second, they didn’t do so out of greed, but out of necessity and love for the land. The inheritance they were vying for was that of property in the land of Israel.  They wanted to ensure that they would be allotted a place in the land.  And when they did ask, they did so respectfully.  I see so many people that, when they feel they are getting the “short end of the stick” or that the “system is rigged” they flip out (maybe burn a flag or two :-P).  But it’s important to realize that systems of law and order are not just haphazardly thrown together.  A lot of thought and reason goes into them.  We might feel that something like this has never happened and isn’t possible for the system to handle.  But if we approach the situation calmly and with dignity, we’re much more likely to get the result we seek.

That’s what, I feel, is so powerful about the story of Tzelofchad’s daughters.  The didn’t seek to burn the place down but use the system itself to achieve what they felt was just.  And it worked.

Have a great week!
~Rabbi Yossi

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