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Bible Dictionaries
Birthright

Smith's Bible Dictionary

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Birthright. The advantages accruing to the eldest son. These were not definitely fixed in patriarchal times. Great respect was paid to him in the household, and, as the family widened into a tribe, this grew into a sustained authority, undefined save by custom, in all matters of common interest. Thus the "princes" of the congregation had probably rights of primogeniture. Numbers 7:2; Numbers 21:18; Numbers 25:14. Gradually, the rights of the eldest son came to be more definite:

(1) The functions of the priesthood in the family with the paternal blessing.

(2) A "double portion" of the paternal property was allotted by the Mosaic law. Deuteronomy 21:16-17.

(3) The eldest son succeeded to the official authority of the father.

The first-born of the king was his successor by law. 2 Chronicles 21:3. In all these, Jesus was the first-born of the father.

Bibliography Information
Smith, William, Dr. Entry for 'Birthright'. Smith's Bible Dictionary. https://www.studylight.org/​dictionaries/​eng/​sbd/​b/birthright.html. 1901.
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