Jacob, his four wives and twelve children
"So there were 12 sons of Jacob. The sons by Leʹah were Jacob’s
firstborn Reuʹben, then Simʹe·on, Leʹvi, Judah, Isʹsa·char, and Zebʹu·lun. The sons by Rachel were Joseph and Benjamin. And the sons by Bilʹhah, Rachel’s servant, were Dan and Naphʹta·li. And the sons by Zilʹpah, Leʹah’s
servant, were Gad and Ashʹer. These are Jacob’s sons, who were born to him in Padʹdan-aʹram" (Genesis 35: 22b-26).
Initially Jacob wanted to marry only with Rachel, nevertheless
by a ploy of his father (of Rachel), Laban made sure that he married to Leah (the firstborn daughter). And then, he gave to Jacob, Rachel (the second daughter). So Jacob, despite himself, found himself with two wives, Leah and Rachel (Genesis 29: 21-19). Rachel
had a servant, Bilhah, whom she gave as an additional wife to her husband, so that she might give birth for her, to give to Jacob, children because she was provisionally barren (at the beginning of the marriage) (Genesis 30: 1-8). Leah, Rachel's sister, did
the same with her servant, Zilpah, she gave her to Jacob, to give him more children, in her name (Genesis 30: 9-13).
Jacob's first wife: Leah.
Her children: Ruben (firstborn, stripped of his birthright), Simeon, Levi (did not inherit a "lot", but he did his ministry in the temple), Judah, Issachar, Zabulon.
Jacob's second wife: Rachel.
Her children: Joseph (inheritance of the birthright, lost by his older brother, Ruben, and thereby obtains a double territorial share for his two
sons (Ephraim (firstborn) and Manasseh. Together they represented the tribe of "Joseph" (Ezekiel 47:13)). Benjamin second son of Rachel).
Jacob's third wife: Bilha (Rachel's servant
who would have children in the name Rachel).
Her children: Dan and Nephtali.
Jacob's fourth wife: Zilpa (Leah's
servant who would have children in the name of Leah).
Her children: Gad and Asher.
The two tribes who represented
the royalty in Israel
To understand the logic of the territorial distribution of the map above, mentioned in Ezekiel's prophecy, which will serve as a model for the worldwide
distribution of territories to the future resurrected ones, it is convenient to exam the written history of Israel, in the Bible. For this it will begin with the territorial strip of the prince (or chieftain), who is in the center of the map of Israel, with
the temple in the middle. To the north of this strip, is the tribe of Judah (son of Leah) and in the south of Benjamin (son of Rachel). Why are these two tribes next to the prince's strip of land? There are two complementary biblical explanations. First, there
are two tribes who represented the kingship of Israel. Second, during the division of the kingdom of Israel, these two tribes were allied and constituted the kingdom of Judah.
basis of these two information, this juxtaposition seems to indicate the kinship relationship of these two tribes with that of the prince who will be an earthly representative of the heavenly kingship of the 144,000 (Revelation 5:10 and Psalms 45:16). The
resurrected ones who have a proven relationship with the prince (chieftain), will inherit the lots that will be next to the prince's strip.
Nevertheless, regarding the prince's sons, it is written in the prophecy that the chieftain (the prince) will have to give them a lot in the alloted place of his own territory: "The chieftain should not take any of the inheritance of the people by forcing
them off their property. He should give his sons an inheritance from his own property, so that no one among my people may be driven from his property" (Ezekiel 46:18). It is the prince (or chieftain) who will administer the distribution of the lots of the
"land", for the resurrected ones who will be under his administration.
The family of the resurrected ones and the foreigners
For this, we must rely on the family or genealogical relationship of the resurrected ones. The genealogical process will be (according Ezekiel’s prophecy): The closer to the family of the family of the prince (chieftain), will
be to the closer territorial (to the prince's strip). On the contrary, the distant genealogical relationship will be, maybe nonexistent, the remote away the territorial strip will be (see Ezekiel 47:22: the "foreigners" could refer to the resurrected ones
who will have a distant genealogical relationship with the whole family of the "country" of "Israel" (as prototype). To verify the accuracy of this interpretation, we must compare the picture above, with the children of Jacob's four wives.
Thus, one could consider that the names of the tribes whose children born directly from Rachel (later) and Leah are related in the "first degree", while the names of the tribes of the sons of the two servants who gave
birth in the name of their mistress, were related to the "second degree". Regarding the children of these two women (Bilha and Zilpah) (Dan and Nephtali for Bilha and Gad and Asher for Zilpah), the corresponding lots are in the remotest territorial strips,
both north and south of the prince's lot. The observation is that the two brothers of the same mother (Zilpa), Gad and Asher, have separate lots, one in the far north (Asher) and the other in the far south (Gad). In addition, the lots of Dan and Nephtali,
two brothers of the same mother (Bilha), have a strip still separated by the Asher band. This seems to confirm that these lots will be given to the resurrected "foreigners" (in the far north or in the far south), according to Ezekiel 47:22, as genealogical
remotest relationship with de chieftain or the whole "Israel" (as propotype), in the "nation" they will be resurrected. Nevertheless, the fact that they are gathered together in the same tribe (in the same strip), means that these resuscitated people will
be gathered with their family, even if they will be very small.
North and then south
into account the order of birth of the twelve sons of Jacob, we can understand how the chieftain (prince) will administer the distributions of lots of land of the nation for which he will be responsible:
For his kinship (other than his sons), he will first assign lots in the "Judah" strip, north because Judah was born before Benjamin (see the map).
Still regarding his kinship,
when the lots (in the whole strip) have been completely distributed in the north, he will award lots, this time in the southern part, the "Benjamin's strip" (who was born after Judah).
logical process (first north-last south) of attribution is repeated twice: With regard to the strips of land, "Reuben" (firstborn of Leah), "Ephraim and Manasseh" (Son of Joseph, firstborn of Rachel), their respective lot , is in the north (like Judah, who
was born before Benjamin). This seems to indicate that the "firstborn" of the resurrection, having a proven family relationship with the prince's nation, will inherit first from the northern part of the prince's strip, starting from the "Judah" strip (at North).
As for the "foreigners", the logic of distribution seems different: The first resuscitated whose kinship with the nation "Israel" will be very distant, or not proven, the prince will assign them
lots from both ends border of the country : from the far-north end of the nation, to the far-south end of the nation. Why ? Dan was the firstborn of Bilha, whose strip is at the northern limit of the nation (in the map). While Gad was Zilpa's firstborn, whose
strip is at the southern edge of the nation. This distribution of the allotted places between the resurrected ones with a known kinship and the resurrected ones whose kinship is not determined (foreigners), is logical. Why ?
The prince (or chieftain) is not supposed to know the number of the resurrected ones of his own nation, especially, between these two categories, with known ancestry and distant ancestry (maybe unknown). Therefore,
it will be in his best interest to maximize the buffer zone between these two categories, in order to better organize the distributions among these two great categories, as the resurrected people are coming in his "lot" as "nation" or "country" (Ezekiel 47:21).
Looking at the map, we understand that the prince will give lots first in the northern part (regarding from his own strip), in the direction of north for the people with kinship known. And for
the "foreigners", people with unknown kinship (or far kinship), (also in the northern part) from the far-north to the south. Then, when all the lots, in the northern part will be allotted (to the two groups of the first resurrected), the prince will begin
to give the lots in southern part in the same process (regarding from his strip): from "Benjamin's strip", direction towards the south. Why ? In examining the map, Simeon was born before Issachar, who himself was born before Zabulon (for the group of kinship
known), and the last group of unknown kinship, in the far-southern part of the country.
They will be fixed by God who will determine the size of the country, and the size of the tribes (Ezekiel 47 and 48). Nevertheless, it is the prince who will concretely apply the border modalities: "The chieftain should
not take any of the inheritance of the people by forcing them off their property. He should give his sons an inheritance from his own property, so that no one among my people may be driven from his property" (Ezekiel 46:18). If, in this biblical text, it is
not directly written that it is the prince (chieftain) who will administer the distribution of lots (or alloted places) to the resurrected people, the fact that he could unjustly dispossess someone of his property, demonstrates that he will have this authority
given by God. However, it is directly written in Ezekiel 45: 8: "This land will become his possession in Israel. My chieftains will no longer mistreat my people, and they will give the land to the house of Israel according to their tribes" (Ezekiel 45: 8).
According to the narrative of Ezekiel 47:13-48:35, also referring to the picture above to better understand, the general border requirements will be simple. The north-south boundaries separating
the tribes will be linear and equitably divided : "You will inherit it and receive equal shares. I swore to give this land to your forefathers, and now it is assigned to you as an inheritance" (Ezekiel 47:14). The east-west borders will be natural, seas or
oceans, rivers or inland seas. The lakes can be an integral part of a tribal lot. And of course the borderline with other nations (east-west or north-south).