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Daughter of Reuel, priest of Midian; wife of Moses; mother of Gershom and Eliezer (Exodus 2:21; Exodus 4:25; Exodus 18:2; Exodus 18:6). (See MOSES .) The Cushite wife mentioned in Numbers 12 as the object of Miriam's jealousy can hardly have been Zipporah who was then long before married to Moses, but probably a second wife taken after Zipporah's death. Josephus (Ant. 2:10, Section 2.) makes him marry at Meroe one Ethiopian princess. Zipporah as a Midianitess had delayed the circumcision of her son; her perversity well nigh brought divine vengeance on Moses. With reluctance and anger she circumcised him, exclaiming, "A bloody husband art thou to me because of the circumcision," which binds thee to me afresh.
        Zipporah recovered her husband's life at the cost of her child's blood. This event at the inn seemingly induced Moses to send her back to her father as one unable to brave the trials of God's people. Jethro brought her back to Moses in Rephidim during the first year's sojourn in the wilderness, the last time she is mentioned. Miriam's jealousy was in the second year. Zipporah's marriage must have been between the first and the second years. Habakkuk (Habakkuk 3:7) connects Midian and Cushan, so that some think Zipporah is meant by the Cushite wife; but probabilities are on the other side. Only Canaanite wives were forbidden (Exodus 34:11-16). Moses' marriage to a Midianitess and a Cushite successively typifies the extension of God's covenant to the Gentiles (Psalm 45:9, etc.; Song of Solomon 1:4, etc.); Miriam's and Aaron's murmuring answers to that of the Jews at the comprehension of the Gentiles (Luke 15:29-30).

Bibliography Information
Fausset, Andrew Robert M.A., D.D., "Definition for 'zipporah' Fausset's Bible Dictionary". - Fausset's; 1878.

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