Moses' wife and sons are omitted from the genealogy, whereas Aaron's wife, sons and grandson are all included. What is the significance of this?

Related but different question on the genealogy here - Why is the genealogy of Moses placed in the middle of his life story?

  • Hi whiskey92, welcome. If that comes in handy for you, Moses's sister (Miriam - Numbers 26:59) doesn't appear in it either Jan 2, 2021 at 10:02

1 Answer 1


Moses had sent his wife, Zipporah, back to her father Jethro. in the land of Midian, after the incident involving circumcision at the inn, Exodus 4:24-26.

When Jethro comes to see Moses, Exodus 18:1-27, he brings Zipporah with him and her sons, by Moses.

At the time the genealogy in Exodus 6 is written, therefore, Moses has no wife or sons with him. Whether he disclosed their existence to his Hebrew brethren ; whether they are not included because they were not, presently, among the general congregation ; whether they are discounted because there is some doubt they will ever return, is not stated.

They are not included, I would suggest, because at that time, their absence made them irrelevant to the expected progress of Israel and the future of the generations.

Since there is no further mention of them in scripture, we can only speculate as to what happened to them. There is no further evidence, in scripture, that I am aware of, upon which to form a valid conjecture.

  • Thanks so much @Nigel J. Appreciate the answer. Just some clarifications, please: 1. Is it too speculative to see this as somehow linked to the dissension in Numbers 12? (especially if one holds the view that the wife in question was Zipporah) link 2. Would you have a view on the significance of the emphasis on Aaron & his line instead of on Moses in the genealogy? Thanks in advance!
    – whiskey92
    Jan 3, 2021 at 5:34
  • 2
    @whiskey92 It is certainly the case that Moses is representative of something. He represents something that will pass away - the first covenant. Whereas Aaron represents Christ the High Priest and he (Christ) shall ever endure. So I do see an unsurprising lack of following Moses' genealogy, yes indeed.
    – Nigel J
    Jan 3, 2021 at 5:38

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