Then Jethro, Moses's father-in-law, took Zipporah, Moses's
When he had heard of the above things, he determined to pay Moses a visit, and congratulate him on that account; and he took his daughter, the wife of Moses, along with him, to deliver her to her husband, to share with him in his cares and troubles; as to partake with him of his honours and dignity, so to bear part with him in his burdens, so far as she was capable of:
after he had sent her back:
upon his call and mission to Egypt, he took his wife and children with him; but upon an affair which occurred in the inn by the way, he sent them back again to his father-in-law, where they had remained ever since, see ( Exodus 4:24 Exodus 4:25 ) . Jarchi says this was done at meeting with Aaron his brother, ( Exodus 4:27 ) , and relates a conversation between them upon it. As that Aaron should say to him, who are these? to which he replied, this is my wife, I married her in Midian, and these are my sons: he further said to him, and where art thou carrying them? he replied, to Egypt; says he, by reason of those who are before there, we are in straits, and thou wilt add unto them; upon which he said to his wife, go back to thy father's house, and she took her sons and went thither. Kimchi F6 observes, that some render the words "after her gifts"; whose sense, according to Aben Ezra, is, after she had sent gifts to her husband; but others more probably interpret it of gifts sent by him to her to engage his father-in-law to let her come to him, as well as to prevail upon her to come; perhaps it may be better rendered, "after her messenger"; that is, either after the messenger sent to her by Moses, to acquaint her and her father of what had been done for him, or after the messenger she sent to him, to let him know that she intended shortly to be with him; though perhaps, after all, nearer to our version and others, it may be rendered, "after her dismissions" F7; the dismission or sending away of her and her sons, as before related; for this is by no means to be interpreted of a divorce of her; after which she was brought again to her husband; for there is no reason to believe that ever anything of that kind had passed, as some have thought F8: the plain case seems to be this, that Moses finding his family would be exposed to danger, or would be too great an incumbrance upon him in the discharge of his great work he had to do in Egypt, sent them back to his father-in-law until a fit opportunity should offer of their coming to him, as now did.
F6 Sepher Shorash. rad. (xlv) "post dona vel donationes ejus"; so some in Vatablus and Drusius.
F7 (hyxwlv rha) "post dimissiones ejus", Pagninus, Montanus, Drusius.
F8 Vid. Selden. Uxor. Hebr. p. 629.