According to the vast internet, Cushites (later called Ethiopians) were a group of dark-skinned people that are originally indigenous from North Africa.

Midianites in the Bible are also dark-skinned tribe in which originated in Northwest Arabian Peninsula. Also according to the Bible, Moses travelled far from Egypt and stranded near the land of the Midianites. (Personally, I find researching these things impressive because at first I didn’t know that Egypt was part of the Northern Africa. I LEARNED that the MORE you know about Geography, the BETTER you will understand the history of the Bible.)

In short, the Arabian Peninsula is at the center of a huge region of desert stretching from North Africa to Central Asia, called the Great Arid Zone. So Cushites and Midianites are basically in one part of the world a few miles apart but most probably are not the same people.

Here is an illustration of where is where in the world, to whoever didn’t know the map good just like me.

There is one passage in the Bible about Miriam and Aaron opposing Moses of being married to a Cushite.

Miriam and Aaron Oppose Moses
Miriam and Aaron began to talk against Moses because of his Cushite wife, for he had married a Cushite.

Numbers 12:1

See story of Miriam and Aaron Opposing Moses here.

There are two possibilities about this passage:

  • the first one is that the Cushite woman they were referring to was Zipporah herself because of her dark complexion
  • the other possibility was that Moses had a second wife.

The Bible stated in Exodus that Moses took his wife (singular meaning he had only one wife) and sons.

Exodus 4:20
So Moses took his wife and sons, put them on a donkey and started back to Egypt. And he took the staff of God in his hand.

Zipporah was not mentioned after the Exodus. So she might be the Cushite woman the siblings were talking about.

But in the book of Numbers, the siblings of Moses murmured about his wife being a Cushite. Might be referring to a second wife.

According to the “Geography” and “History” lesson we had in the first paragraphs, the relationship between Cushites and Midianites is not that visible. Although they are close in case of Geographical placements, their link with each other is hard to pinpoint.

Also, in this case, Moses and Zipporah were married for forty years. Why would Miriam and Aaron complained about his wife now?

What do you think?

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The Bravery of Deborah

Wed Mar 31 , 2021
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