He returned from the fields early this day, driven by what - he wasn unsure. But there breathed within his body an almost overwhelming desire. Zipporah welcomed him with a cool drink of goat's milk. She then lovingly removed his sandals and washed his feet. As she knealt down before him, she looked up and smiled. HIs heart quickened at her smile. Such a beautiful smile he thought. That smile had always captivated him since the day he had met her there by her father's well that day, ten years ago. And now he lived the life of a happy man, a good wife, two beautiful children, a gracious father-in-law whom he loved deeply even as his own father. His thoughts then wandered to his father, then his mother, his Hebrew parents. He knew that he was a Hebrew and he had met his real family one day after asking his sister to take him to them. His sweet sister, Miriam, who had come to be his nurse in the Palace when he was but a babe. She had been a constant companion to him while he grew to manhood. She had been the only known Hebrew granted permission to enter the Palace, permission secured for her by his foster mother, Bitya, Pharoah's daughter. Yes, he knew that he was a Hebrew, and now his thoughts and his heart went out to his parents, his family, his people, as he remembered how they were burdened by the Egyptians as slaves, treated no better than animals by their masters while he himself had lived in luxury in the royal Palace as the prince of Egypt. He remembered now also how he had had to flee from the wrath of Egyptian justice after having killed an Egyptian overseer who was mercilessly beating a fellow Hebrew, and how he had come here to Midian, and had been befriended by Yitro, priest of Midian, who had concealed him from the Egyptians and had offered him his daughter as a wife. Yes he was happy, and yet also sad. Happy to be living a serence life here with his loved ones, and sad that his family and his people still continued to live the everyday cruel life of servitiude as slaves of the Egyptians.

Now looking down at his sweet wife, the desire that he had felt all that day began to grew and swell within him. He did not understand why this day he felt the need to love his Zipporah in the way of a man with a maid more than any otehr day but he knew that he wanted her very badly. Moses had always been a man of few words, and of meek disposition; a man of modesty to whom romantic and loving speech came with great difficulty. Now the words failed him as he reached lovingly to Zipporah's face and carressed her. But she saw his face and knew. She, also a modest woman, blushed at his gaze and he immediately turned his face away, afraid that his heated stare was embarrassing her. But she gently took his hand that still rested upon her cheek and kissed the palm. She rose up and placed his arms aroudn her waist and she held him close against her bossoms. She spoke first when she felt him tremble against her body.

"My lord, my husband, I am indeed fortunate to have such a wonderful man for a husband; a man who after all these years, still finds me desirable, and I a woman no longer young, and one whose body reveals birthing and nursing."

He rose up and held her in his embrace and looked at her. "Forgive me", he said, "but there has come upon me this day, such a strong desire to be with you as a man with a woman. I cannot understand it but I have felt it all day."

She responded to him. "Let me feed the children and put them to bed, and then you and I shall also to bed", and she smiled knowingly as she said the word. He looked at her and her smile made him also smile.

Later, after the children had been put to sleep and Moses and Zipporah had finished their supper, they went to their room, hand in hand, and in the darkness, they undressed each other, and the feel of their mutual carresses caused him to rise as he had not done in such a long while.

The night was warm and the window, which looked out upon the foothills of the mountains of Midian, was open. Zipporah wished to draw the blinds but he stopped her. "No", he said, "Leave the window open."

He saw the quizical look on her face and smiled with lowered eyes. "It is just that - I feel - I do not know why - but I wish the mountains to witness our love tonight."

She nodded silently and led him to their bed. As a young man, growing up in the Palace of Egypt, his teachers had taught him well all the arts of love making that a royal prince was expected to know. Yet now, all of these mechanics escaped him and he loved his wife simply yet passionately; loved her from deep within his heart, loved her honestly. He knew from her moves beneath him, and from her love sounds, that she was being pleasured by himn in a special way this night. As he thrust deep within her, he felt the fire in his loins, in his belly, thefire which ran all through his body and consumed his brain. This was the fire that he had seen that day, an unknown fire that had frightened him and had held him transfixed at the same time as he gazed at it, just as he had gazed at Zipporah earlier upon his return from the sheep pastures. For he, Moses, was a faithful shepherd to his father-in-law, who many a day had watched over and protected his flock, never imagining that one day soon a greater Shepherd would entrust him with a greater flock. And then, early that morning as he was leading the sheep out to pasture, he first noticed it.

Up in the foothills of the mountains of Midian, a fire. Strange. From this distance it looked as though one of the trees had caught fire and his first thought was to run for help to put out the flames before the fire might spread. But his gaze was drawn to the flame, transfixed, and he could not move. He looked and looked and saw that althouogh the flame was constant, it did not spread, but remained rooted in that one small tree. He was amazed. A tree that burned and was not consumed. He feared to approach and he would not leave his sheep unattended. SO all he could do that day was to stare at the mysteriously burning tree from time to time, and each time he looked the tree unfailingly continued to burn unabated yet the flame did not grow. Now in his marriage love bed, that same flame burned within him as he loved his wife with ever growing intensity until the moment when she screamed out his name in tuminescent pleasure, and he also felt his body burst into flame at that instant, and he held ihs wife very tightly so that there was barely any space between them.

After that they were silent together. Helay there stroking and carressing her late into the night until she fell asleep in his embrace. Then softly, so as not to wake her, he arose from the bed and went to the window to watch the mountains that had watched their loving. Clearly he could see it against the dark night, futher away and smaller yet unmistakable - that tree that continued to burn, and as far as he knew, no one else had been aware of it even though it was visable to all who cared to look. That fire that had burned witin him all day and had made hm want to love his wife.

He could not have known but this was the last time that he would be lover to his wife. For on the morrow hewould become a new individual, called to a mission that he could not fathom had anyone told him of it tis moment. And that mission would consume him as a pillar of fire, and there would be no space in his life after that for any other flame- for Someone greater than all would become his new lifelong passion, and all human passions would recede before this new  passion and love. It would be an all consuming love for freedom and for connection with the Infinite, and for connection with the past and future of his people, a love and a passion that would brook no competition from any other love and passion.

He looked one time over at his sleeping wife and felt a loving sadness that he could not name, and it was strange - for after this night of loving, he would have supposed that his heart would be filled with joy. Yet he sensed the loss of something, - gone forever, a part of himself slipping away - making room for a new part yet to come. He turned his gaze away from the sleeping Zipporah and out into the night, to the fire that burned on the mountain.

He whispered into the late night air, "Tomorrow, I shall turn aside and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt."

To: King Solomon
Subject: Zipporah
Date: Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Dear Shlo
I have just been reading your writings on your website, mostly the page on biblical couples.

Check out this thread on the MSN Dove List on Zipporah.

The name of the thread is Bridegroom of Blood; it is pretty far back in the log of the Dove so I will post a note to you at the end to bring it up to the front of the list digest.

Sh'ma Yisrael Adonai Elohaynu Adonai Echad
Love - Kelly

To: "The Dove and the Serpent" []
Subject: Daily digest for The Dove and the Serpent
Date: Fri, October 1 2004

The Bridegroom of Blood
Zipporah as the Goddess - Rescuer of Moses

For mystery, mayhem, and sheer baffling weirdness, nothing else in the Bible quite compares with the story of Zipporah and the "Bridegroom of Blood" in Exodus 4:24-26.

"And it came to pass on the way at the lodging-place, that the Lord met him, and sought to kill him. Then Zipporah took a flint, and cut off the foreskin on her son, and cast it at his feet; and she said: "Surely a bridgroom of blood are thou to me." So He left them alone. Then she said: "A bridegroom of blood in regard of the circumcisions."

Whoever saw her would acknowledge her beauty. She is called Zipporah, meaning "look" and "see" how beautiful! She is called "the Cushite" (Numbers 12:1) because just as the Cushite woman is distinguished from other women by the color of her skin, so too was Zipporah distinguished from other women by her beauty (Sifre Beha’alotcha 99). When the elders were appointed, all of Israel lit candles and rejoiced for them. Miriam saw the candles burning and asked Zipporah, "What are these candles for?" Zipporah told her. "Fortunate are the wives who see their husbands rise to high position," said Miriam. "Woe is to them," said Zipporah, "for henceforth their husbands will separate from them" (Yalkut Shimoni, Beha’alotcha 738). Another matriarchal beauty, this time of Cushite origin, joins the ranks of Israel. Zipporah, Jethro’s daughter, meets her beloved Moses at the prototypical well, this time in the land of Midian. The Exodus narrative does not belabor the romance. Zipporah is given by her father to Moses, and bea rs a son called Gershom, an _expression of his father’s anxiety that he was "a stranger in a strange land" (Exodus 2:21-22).

From: ChrisCadmon1

This is what the note on Exodus 4:25 says in the Jewish Study Bible of The Jewish Publication Society:

Here circumcision seems to have apotropaic (magically protective) power, and by touching her son's foreskin to Moses' "legs" (genitals?), Zipporah saved him. The saving power of the bloody foreskin may foreshadow the protective role of the blood on the Israelites' doorposts on the eve of the Exodus (Exodus 12:7, 13, 22-23). The Hebrew word for bridegroom means "protect" in Akkadian and Arabic, and "circumcise" in Arabic.


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