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Numbers 12:1

    Numbers 12:1 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman.

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    And Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because of the Ethiopian woman whom he had married: for he had married an Ethiopian woman.

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Cushite woman whom he had married; for he had married a Cushite woman.

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    Now Miriam and Aaron said evil against Moses, because of the Cushite woman to whom he was married, for he had taken a Cushite woman as his wife.

    Webster's Revision

    And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Cushite woman whom he had married; for he had married a Cushite woman.

    World English Bible

    Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses because of the Cushite woman whom he had married; for he had married a Cushite woman.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    And Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses because of the Cushite woman whom he had married: for he had married a Cushite woman.

    Clarke's Commentary on Numbers 12:1

    Miriam and Aaron spake against Moses - It appears that jealousy of the power and influence of Moses was the real cause of their complaint though his having married an Ethiopian woman-האשה הכשית haishshah haccushith - That Woman, the Cushite, probably meaning Zipporah, who was an Arab born in the land of Midian - was the ostensible cause.

    Barnes' Notes on Numbers 12:1

    Miriam, as a prophetess (compare Exodus 15:20-21) no less than as the sister of Moses and Aaron, took the first rank among the women of Israel; and Aaron may be regarded as the ecclesiastical head of the whole nation. But instead of being grateful for these high dignities they challenged the special vocation of Moses and the exclusive authority which God had assigned to him. Miriam was the instigator, from the fact that her name stands conspicuously first Numbers 12:1, and that the punishment Numbers 12:10 fell on her alone. She probably considered herself as supplanted, and that too by a foreigner. Aaron was misled this time by the urgency of his sister, as once before Exodus 32 by that of the people.

    Numbers 12:1

    The Ethiopian woman whom he had married - (Hebrew, "Cushite," compare Genesis 2:13; Genesis 10:6) It is likely that Zipporah Exodus 2:21 was dead, and that Miriam in consequence expected to have greater influence than ever with Moses. Her disappointment at his second marriage would consequently be very great.

    The marriage of Moses with a woman descended from Ham was not prohibited, so long as she was not of the stock of Canaan (compare Exodus 34:11-16); but it would at any time have been offensive to that intense nationality which characterized the Jews. The Christian fathers note in the successive marriage of Moses with a Midianite and an Ethiopian a foreshadowing of the future extension to the Gentiles of God's covenant and its promises (compare Psalm 45:9 ff; Sol 1:4 ff); and in the complaining of Miriam and Aaron a type of the discontent of the Jews because of such extension: compare Luke 15:29-30.

    Wesley's Notes on Numbers 12:1

    12:1 Miriam - Miriam seems to be first named, because she was the first mover of the sedition; wherefore she is more eminently punished. The Ethiopian - Either, Zipporah, who is here called an Ethiopian, in the Hebrew a Cushite, because she was a Midianite: the word Cush being generally used in scripture, not for Ethiopia properly so called below Egypt, but for Arabia. If she be meant, probably they did not quarrel with him for marrying her, because that was done long since, but for being swayed by her and her relations, by whom they might think he was persuaded to chose seventy rulers, by which co - partnership in government they thought their authority and reputation diminished. And because they durst not accuse God, they charge Moses, his instrument, as the manner of men is. Or, some other woman, whom he married either whilst Zipporah lived, or rather because she was now dead, though that, as many other things, be not recorded. For, as the quarrel seems to be about his marrying a stranger, it is probable it was a fresh occasion about which they contended. And it was lawful for him as well as any other to marry an Ethiopian or Arabian woman, provided she were, a sincere proselyte.