Ark of the Covenant - Bible History Online
Bible History Online

Naves Topical Bible Dictionary

zipporah Summary and Overview

Bible Dictionaries at a GlanceBible Dictionaries at a Glance

zipporah in Easton's Bible Dictionary

a female bird. Reuel's daughter, who became the wife of Moses (Ex. 2:21). In consequence of the event recorded in Ex. 4:24-26, she and her two sons, Gershom and Eliezer, when so far on the way with Moses toward Egypt, were sent back by him to her own kinsfolk, the Midianites, with whom they sojourned till Moses afterwards joined them (18:2-6).

zipporah in Smith's Bible Dictionary

daughter of Reuel or Jethro, the priest of Midian, wife of Moses and mother of his two sons Gershom and Eliezer. #Ex 2:21; 4:25; 18:2| comp. Exod 18:6 (B.C. 1530.) The only incident recorded in her life is that of the circumcision of Gershom. #Ex 4:24-28|

zipporah in Schaff's Bible Dictionary

ZIPPO'RAH , a daughter of a Midianite priest, who was married to Moses and bore him two sons. Ex 2:21-22.

zipporah in Fausset's Bible Dictionary

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).