Three’s Company

“You’re tense, that’s all” said Zipporah. “We have all night, and the rest of our lives.”

“You’re so wise and so understanding,” said Moses.

When Moses said this he immediately thought of Hatshepsut, whose wise and understanding mind – quite apart from her effulgent beauty – had so captivated him, her spirit would dwell in him forever. In the darkness of the tent on his and Zipporah’s wedding night, Moses discerned Zipporah transforming into Hatshepsut. His tenseness evaporated as new energy invaded his loins.

“You’re right, dear Zipporah, I was too tense. Now, strange to say, I’m suddenly feeling different. Very different. Let’s try again”.

“Are you sure? You don’t have to, you know”.

“I know I don’t have to. But I want to. And right now.”


Moses had always felt ambivalent about taking Zipporah to wife because she compared so poorly with Hatshepsut in his Hatshepsut-addled mind. Hence what he feared might happen on this wedding night did happen – at least in the early hours of it.

Moses insatiable desire for Hatshepsut had been impelled not only by her mind and intelligence and beauty, but by the delicious illicitness of their affair, which would have led to fatal consequences had Egyptian officialdom found out. Moses would have had his head chopped off. Hatshepsut if not having her head chopped off too, would have been publicly disgraced and consequently shunned for the rest of her life.

Moses’ awareness of all this had given his affair with Hatshepsut a frisson he now realised he would miss in his marriage to Zipporah. This left him with an inner emptiness he determined to fill with energy devoted to preparing himself for the day when God would order him to lead the Hebrew people out of slavery in Egypt to freedom in Canaan.

As part of his preparation, Moses tried to become a more rounded man. Not more rounded in the sense of becoming fat from eating more than normal, but more rounded psychologically and spiritually.  Up to  this point he had known a life only of privilege in the Egyptian royal household. Now, as Jethro’s son-in-law and Zipporah’s husband, he was to embrace a humble life in looking after Jethro’s sheep and doing other farming chores. In this way he was to become just another anonymous Midianite labourer until God called for him.

Thus over the next few years Moses lived tranquilly. By day he looked after the sheep. By evenings he took long solitary walks while thinking deep thoughts. And he took seriously his role as a dutiful if not loving husband to Zipporah, who, soon after Moses took her to wife, bore him a son who he formally named Gershom, but later nicknamed Gersh.


But Hatshepsut never left Moses. She stayed with him in spirit always. She went with him on his solitary evening walks. She crept into his bed at night, invading his dreams and thoughts. Whenever he made love to Zipporah it was Hatshepsut he made love to.

Can we wonder that Zipporah on many occasions throughout the years, would ask Moses, “Why do I always think there are three in our marriage?”

Source: Exodus 2, 21 – 22

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Moses and Zipporah continued to meet at the well almost daily because Zipporah’s father’s sheep had to have water to drink, and this well was the most convenient one.

Moses always looked forward to these meetings, because, even though still thinking about Hatshepsut a lot, he was thinking about Zipporah more and more. Still, he and Zipporah had little opportunity to speak privately during these visits because her six sisters always came as well. The shepherds, the ones who Moses had sent fleeing, were often at the well too. Each time Moses looked at them they looked back and drew their hands across their throats in a cutting motion.

Soon, Moses got another invitation to visit Zipporah’s father, Jethro, and break bread at his home. After the meal the girls went outside to wash plates and utensils, leaving their father and Moses to talk.


“What do you think of Zipporah?” said Jethro.

“She’s………er……..very nice. Very pleasant. I do like her”.

“Enough to take to wife?”

“Er…….I haven’t quite thought about it. I don’t find the idea displeasing.”

“You’d be the perfect son-in law for me, you know. You appear of good character, are mature, are well-spoken, and are refreshingly free of relatives. I’m looking for a good man like you to help run my farm, because my priestly vocation takes up most of my time. I do hope therefore you’ll try to win Zipporah’s heart.”


So began Moses courtship of Zipporah. Most evenings when the workday was over, Moses called on Zipporah at her father’s house and they went on leisurely walks. Despite seeing Zipporah as wifely material, Moses was very aware that she just didn’t match up to Hatshepsut. Particularly in her mind, for it was Hatshepsut’s intelligent, learned, curious, lively, imaginative and cosmopolitan mind that had so ensnared Moses.

Also, in her ability to sexually excite men, Hatshepsut had no equal. She had told Moses that when just a young girl, she had been appointed as the wife of the god, Amun, for whom she served as a priestess, one of whose duties was to sexually excite Amun in his statue form by masturbating him. This began her apprenticeship in the art of stimulating men – an art she honed to perfection by the time she became an adult.

From all this, plus that Hatshepsut was the most beautiful woman in the known world, you will easily see how enormous had been her power over Moses, let alone over all men who crossed her path………

Hence when Moses walked with Zipporah on those evenings of courtship, and he compared her with Hatshepsut, he had doubts whether he, or his body, would respond to Zipporah in the way a husband should. By marrying Zipporah, Moses would lose Hatshepsut for ever. Although the rational part of him knew he would never be with Hatshepsut again, the irrational part of him had never lost hope.

Moses made every effort to see Zipporah in a positive light. She did have charms and assets, being pleasing enough in face, and having bodily contours calculated to arouse the concupiscence of most red-blooded men. Moses’ concupiscence was indeed aroused each time he gazed upon Zipporah’s body and saw it unclothed in his mind’s eye. Being a farm girl, always surrounded by animals, Zipporah exuded an earthiness and a raw sensuality that also aroused Moses’ concupiscence……..

Came an evening when Moses took Zipporah’s hands in his, dropped to one knee  and asked if he could take her to wife.

“Yes….yes………oh…..yes……..of course” said Zipporah, “I thought you’d never ask.”

– Exodus 2, 20-21
The Woman Who Would Be King

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Playing the Field

“How’s your day been?” said Jethro when his seven daughters came back with the sheep.

“Bad in some ways. Good in another” said Zipporah, the eldest.

“Do tell” said Jethro.

Zipporah told him what had happened at the well, how the shepherds had accosted them, how a stranger had interceded and sent the shepherds packing.

“I hope you invited this brave man to come and break bread with us.” said Jethro.


“Why-ever not? Haven’t I always told you that we, as good Kenites, always ask those who do good to us, to break bread at our home?”

“If you insist, I’ll invite him next time I see him at the well, which I expect will be tomorrow.”

“I insist.”


“We meet at last” said Jethro when Zipporah brought Moses home the next day. “I’m Jethro. You are……..?”


“Zipporah tells me you’re from Egypt. I hope you’re not as arrogant as most Egyptians visiting these parts are. They think they own the place.”

“I’m not your average Egyptian. I’m………well………..different.”

Moses went on to tell of how he was as much Hebrew as Egyptian, and how he got to live in the Egyptian royal household. He thought it best, though, not to say too much about Hatshepsut.

“You look middle-aged” said Jethro. “You surely must have a missus and sons somewhere?”

“Er………not yet.”

“Still ‘playing the field’, then, are you? Sowing the wild oats? Mmmm?”

“You could put it that way, yes.”

“That’s nice to hear. Otherwise I might think you have………how shall I say……..unnatural proclivities?”

“I think I can set your mind at rest, sir. I’m as red-blooded as the most red-blooded Egyptian, or, dare I say it, the most red-blooded Kenite.”

“Even so, old fellow, one can only ‘play the field’ for so long. There comes a time in one’s life when one puts aside the irresponsibilities of youth and assumes the responsibilities of mature manhood. Which is to say, take a good woman to wife and have lots of sons by her.”

“I do take your point, sir, about there being a time to take up the responsibilities of mature manhood. But, having been told I have ancestors who lived to be nine-hundred years, I’m still, at just forty years, a mere youth. That said, I’m going to be looking for a good woman to take to wife, and to bear me sons.”

“Now you’re talking” said Jethro.

Source: Exodus 2, 19 – 21

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Pups and Manners

Soon after crossing into the Land of Midian, Moses got a job making bricks on a building site. While not much of a job, it did give Moses the means to find shelter and clean himself up, for he did look a mess. After work each day he liked to sit in the shade near a well close by, and be alone with his thoughts which were mostly about Hatshepsut.

He thought about how she would have reacted to his sudden disappearance. And to the equally sudden disappearance of Senenmut. What if someone had glimpsed from afar his deadly fight with Senenmut? And seen him digging the hole and dumping Senenmut’s body in it? Did that someone talk to someone else about what he had seen? And did that someone else tell someone else? And did that someone else tell yet someone else? And on and on until the story reached Hatshepsut?

Did Hatshepsut then send someone to locate the hole? And to excavate it to see who it was? How did she react when she learned it was Senenmut? While her grief would no doubt have been intense, would it have been less had it been Moses in the hole? Indeed, would she even have been glad had it been Moses in the hole? Because, then, her precious Senenmut might still be alive somewhere, and soon back in her arms?

Moses clenched his fists in impotent fury and seething jealously at this thought. It gave way to despair whenever he was assailed by another thought, that his pain at Hatshepsut’s betrayal might never go away no matter how long he lived.


One evening when sitting near the well, Moses saw seven young women leading a flock of sheep to it so that the sheep might slake their thirst, and the women fill water containers for themselves. When they reached the well a group of shepherds slouched up. They crowded around the young women, put their hands on them, and said things like, “Hiya babe, you’re so beautiful I could die for you” and “Come to me honey and I’ll show you a good time”. The rest of the comments were of the same genre.

Moses strode up to one of the shepherds who seemed to be the leader, thrust two fingers into the shepherd’s nostrils and jerked upwards, forcing the shepherd on to his toes. Moses put his face close and said, “Don’t let me see you here again, there’s a good chap.”

Moses removed his fingers. The shepherd fell to the ground, blood gushing from his torn nostrils.

“Had enough?” said Moses as he bent down and made as if to re-insert his fingers in the shepherd’s nostrils.

“Let’s leave, boys” said the shepherd to his comrades. “We’ll settle things with this punk another time. We’ll fix him so good he won’t know what’s hit him.” They slunk away.

“I and my sisters thank you ever so much sir,” said one of the young women who appeared to be the eldest.

“All in a day’s work,” said Moses. “I just hope I taught those young pups some manners.”

“Are you from these parts?” said the young woman. “You speak sort of funny, so I’m guessing you’re not.”

“I’m up from Egypt” said Moses. “But, enough about me. Allow me to help water your sheep.”

“That’s so good of you sir. I’m Zipporah by the way. You are………?”


“Moses? What a quaint name. Doesn’t sound Egyptian, though”

“How many Egyptians have you known?”

“Oh…er…..not many. But I remember they had names like Amenemhet, Banefre, Djedefhor, Hepzefa and Ihop. Very different from ‘Moses’. It sounds to me almost Kenite, which is what we are.”

“You and your sisters, you live near here do you”?

“Yes, with our father, Jethro. He’s a high priest in our Kenite religion.”

“What about these sheep, then? Are they all for sacrifice in your father’s religious rituals?”

“Oh you are funny, Moses. I like men who are funny. Actually, my father’s a sheep farmer too. We help him with the sheep.”

“Your father sounds most interesting. I hope I can meet him some day.”


Moses was becoming aware of feeling a bodily sensation that men often feel when speaking with comely young women.

“I come to this well every evening. I’ll be here when next you bring your father’s sheep for watering. I’ll look out for you.”

“Yes………that would be…….er…….nice.”


The watering of the sheep now complete, Zipporah and her sisters, with Moses help, herded the sheep together and then set out back for their father’s house. Moses watched until Zipporah vanished over the horizon. Just before she did she turned and waved…….

Source: Exodus 2, 16 – 18

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Making Egypt Great Again

It was fortunate for Moses that – courtesy of his rigorous counter-insurgency training in the Egyptian Army – he was able to “live off the land” while plodding through the aridity of what is today the Sinai Peninsula, to reach sanctuary in the Land of Midian. For food, Moses ate the snakes and lizards he caught. For potable water, he squeezed out cacti, and drank from the occasional well he happened upon.

Moses was therefore in quite good nick when he’d crossed into the Land of Midian. He did, though, look gaunt and haggard – due in no small part to his heartbreak at probably never seeing Hatshepsut again. Moses understood that although she had become Egypt’s de facto Pharaoh, she had courtiers – powerful ones – who had resented Moses unique status in the Royal household. Consequently they were always conjuring up plans to kill him. Hatshepsut was therefore risking overthrow through a Palace coup should she try to get Moses back.

There had also been the balefully growing influence in the Royal circles of Hatshepsut’s co-ruler, the boy Thutmose lll (Baby Thut), who had been only a little baby when his father, Thutmose ll (Thut junior), had died. Just before he breathed his last, Thut junior had decreed that his wife Hatshepsut, although not Baby Thut’s mother, would rule Egypt as Regent for the infant boy. Unfortunately Baby Thut wasn’t an infant for long. He soon grew to become  a truculent slack-jawed teenager who couldn’t wait to become the sole Pharaoh. He had always hated Hatshepsut, who he regarded as a nosey parker, and bossy.

Baby Tut’s assessment of Hatshepsut wasn’t far off the mark, because she always was ambitious, both for herself and for Egypt. Even while growing up she had considered herself the equal of any man. She therefore saw no reason why she shouldn’t become Pharaoh when her father, Thutmose l, died.


From when she and Moses first became lovers, Hatshepsut would from time to time confide to him what she wanted for Egypt and Egyptians.

Moses still remembered that night he and Hatshepsut were lying post-coitally together, their arms and legs entwined, and she had said, “Dearest Moses, with you at my side I want to make Egypt great again. By this, I mean making Egypt a beacon of hope – a shining city on a hill, if you will – for all our neighbours, whether Hebrew, Canaanite, Aramean, Assyrian, Midianite, Nubian, or what have you. I can only do this by becoming Pharaoh when Daddy dies.”

“This is a considerable undertaking” said Moses. “If anyone can do it you can, sweet Hatshepsut”.

“I want us to come to them as friends, not as conquerors” said Hatshepsut, “I want all our neighbours to love us Egyptians, not hate us, as so many now do because they see us only as foes, and for good reason. Daddy has been the cause of this because of his inferiority complex born of having no sense of inner worth. He is so empty inside, he can only assuage it by having Egypt conquer other peoples. This only makes us more enemies, and  weakens us. Having more and more enemies to put down, also uses up  our precious state resources better used to help ordinary Egyptians have more fulfilling and happier lives. I mean, what’s the point of Egypt being the mightiest power in our region, if most of our people are unhappy because they’re poor and oppressed, and feel there’s no way out? Unless we – their rulers – change our ways they’re one day going to come for us.”

“For a woman, you’re remarkably perspicacious” said Moses. “Yours is my view too.”

“I’m glad you think this, darling Moses. This is another sign we’re soul mates. You know, the irony is that the poorer and unhappier ordinary Egyptians become, the more they’ll feel the freedom to rise up against Daddy as the Pharaoh, or me, should I succeed him. Even though we might kill them in their thousands while they swarm through the Palace gates, they won’t be stopped because they’ve nothing left to lose. Yes, for them, freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose.”

“This is brilliant” said Moses, “and it comes out of your brilliant mind. I’ve told you before, darling Hatshepsut, it’s your mind which I love. It excites me as much as your body does. I want to make love to you again, right now. ”

“Yes…….yes…….do” breathed Hatshepsut.

– Exodus 2
Women in Scripture
Bible Archeology
The Woman Who Would Be King
The Perplexing Historical Moses

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Out Of Egypt

Emaciated, parched, dirty, skin bleeding from thorns, robes in tatters, mind delirious, Moses tottered into the land of Midian after fleeing Egypt. Now safely over the border, he sat down on a rock and looked up at the harsh blue sky, where some large birds – they looked like vultures – circled around.

Moses thoughts turned to what had brought him here. He thought about that day when, as a seven year-old, he was taken by the Pharaoh’s daughter, Hatshepsut, to the Royal palace in Heliopolis where she would raise him as her adopted son. Moses’s childhood, although rigorous , had been happy. His early manhood as Hatshepsut’s lover had been blissful. Then all began going downhill………


When did it begin, this downhill? It was, Moses thought, the night God *had visited him* to warn him how perilous it was to become Hatshepsut’s lover. The affair if unchecked would ruin the plans He (God) had for Moses as future saviour of the Hebrew nation. Nonetheless Moses continued as Hatshepsut’s lover. But doubt now infected his mind.

Moses would never forget those midnights, when all were asleep in the Egyptian royal palace, when he and Hatshepsut crept silently into the muggy night outside, and made their way to their special place on the bank of the Nile where they stripped, then plunged into the water to frolic and hold each other, and whisper in each other’s ears their deepest secrets and desire until, aroused to a frenzy, they climbed back on the riverbank and lay down and made love under the stars until dawn, when they arose and crept back to the palace.

Hatshepsut’s sickly husband, Pharaoh Thutmose ll, soon died. Whereupon Hatshepsut became in all but name, Pharaoh of all Egypt, and therefore the most powerful woman in the world. Being still beautiful – arguably the most beautiful woman in the world as well as the most powerful – Hatshepsut’s hold over men was absolute. She could now summon any man she wanted to the Palace and lure him into her bed. This she did. Often.

The knowledge of all this, instead of dampening Moses desire for Hatshepsut, only inflamed it, especially when in bed at night in his own room next to Hatshepsut’s, and he would hear through the wall Hatshepsut’s giggles and groans as she made love with the latest man she had lured.

But, Hatshepsut on other nights when in the  mood, summoned Moses for another midnight swim in the Nile, and they stole away there as if all was unchanged. Hatshepsut always assured Moses that despite the changed circumstances, he would always be the man she loved the most.


There came a time when a man called Senenmut began visiting Hatshepsut more and more……..and……..more. She made him the overseer of her entire household, which included Moses. She also appointed him (Senenmut) chief administrator of the richest lands in Egypt outside those owned by the Royal family.

“What do you see in him, this Senenmut?” said Moses to Hatshepsut one day, “He’s from the lower orders, has no education, and can’t speak with you about the finer things of life like I can. And he’s quite nondescript-looking, unlike me who everyone can’t keep their eyes off of when encountering me at parties and suchlike. What’s got into you, Hatshepsut?”

“Nothing’s got into me” said Hatshepsut, “I should instead ask you what’s got into you, for you’re no longer the Moses you used to be, and were so fun to be around. You appear angry whenever we talk now. I think I know what it is. You’re jealous of Senenmut. You can’t bear it that he has qualities I find attractive, that you don’t have.”

“Jealous? Me? Jealous of Senenmut? That odorous unlettered boor? Well, if you think I’m jealous of him, you don’t know me very well, that’s all I can say.”

“I know you very well, Moses. Better than you know yourself. You can’t resist me, and you hate yourself for this. I need only click my fingers and you come running to me like a jackal pup. I can make you grovel and lick my toes any time I want. There’s nothing I can’t make you do if I so much as hint I’d like you in my bed.”


The years went by. Moses jealousy of Hatshepsut and Senenmut grew……and grew. One day, when Moses anger was more than he could bear, he saw Senenmut inspecting a large barn on land that he (Senenmut) administered.

“Oy you” shouted Moses, “I want a word with you”

“If you want a word with me, you’ll have to address me more civilly than ‘oy you,'” said Senenmut. “I’ll remind you I’m now senior to you in Hatshepsut’s household, and have supplanted you in her affections. You’re going to have to know your place”

“Let’s settle this right now” said Moses, “man to man, no holds barred.”


Senenmut closed in, and they began to wrestle. The fight seemed to Moses to go on for an eternity, for Senenmut was the strongest man he’d ever wrestled. There were moments when Moses had Senenmut in an unbreakable grip, only to have Senenmut break free and put an unbreakable grip on Moses……….

Just when Moses felt he had no more to give, he somehow got his fingers around Senenmut’s throat and squeezed……and squeezed. Senenmut gurgled, became slack, and fell…….dead.


There being no-one else around, Moses, by means of a spade he found in the barn, dug a hole, dumped Senenmut in it undetected, then filled the hole. Realising he now had no choice but to leave Egypt forever, and forthwith, Moses began moving fast towards  Egypt’s eastern border…………

– Exodus 2
Women in Scripture
Bible Archeology
– The Perplexing Historical Moses

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Blue Water-Lilies

That night a voice in the darkness awakened Moses.

“Moses” said the voice, “this is God, so don’t be afraid. I haven’t spoken with you directly before, but now I feel I must because your life has taken a turn that could destroy my plans for you to lead the Hebrew nation from slavery in Egypt to freedom in Canaan. I know your mother Jochebed told you about this before Hatshepsut took you to live with her in the Pharaoh’s palace.”

“My Lord God, I can’t believe it’s really You. Yes, yes, I think I do vaguely remember what Jochebed told me. But……..but…….it seems so……so…….long ago.”

“While it may be for you, it’s not for Me. So I’ll remind you that you are where you are because I brought it about, although indirectly. I pulled the twines, so to speak. However, I intended Hatshepsut to play the part of a mother to you, not a lover. I obviously erred in choosing too beautiful a woman to be your surrogate mother instead of a woman more homely. It’s too late, though, for Me to change this. ”

“Hatshepsut has a power over me I can do nothing about, My Lord” said Moses. “I’m like dough in her hands. I can’t explain it.”

“As your Creator, and Creator of all the world and everything in it, I can explain it,” said God. “What has happened between you and Hatshepsut has to do with hormones and brain chemistry. She has the same affect on your brain’s neurons and chemistry as would your eating a consciousness-altering plant, like, say, a blue water-lily, that you see so many of floating on the Nile. She acts on you in the way your eating a blue water-lily would. You have somewhat the same affect on Hatshepsut, only she has more conscious control because she’s a woman, and therefore is stronger than you as a man. Women are the superior sex, but they conceal this from you men so they can control you better. It’s very important that you know this.”

“I do see the sense in what you say, my Lord God, for I’ve sort of felt this too. So I’m glad you’re confirming what I’ve felt.”

“This perspicacity of yours is why I chose you as leader of my Chosen People. I’m therefore not going to object if what’s going on between you and Hatshepsut continues for a while, for I think you have the self-awareness not to let her destroy you. As your Creator, I know there’s a part of you that can float outside yourself and observe yourself as if you’re someone else. You’re going to have to use this gift, else Hatshepsut will destroy you. She’s ambitious. She wants to be the leader of Egypt some day, but her being a woman makes this especially difficult. She’ll need you at her side, perhaps even as Egypt’s co-ruler. Should she manipulate you into this, you wouldn’t be able to be the leader of my Chosen People.

“I won’t let you down, My Lord.”

“We’ll see.”

– Exodus 2
Women in Scripture
Bible Archeology
– The Perplexing Historical Moses

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