How is it that Moshe, the greatest man who ever lived, married a Midyanite woman, the daughter of Yisro?
You must understand, number one, a very great principle, that Hakodosh Boruch Hu is most interested in a person’s character. רחמנא לבא בעי – Hashem wants the heart. And Yisro was a most remarkable man with a remarkable heart. He was a man who made a break with his past. Yisro was a priest of idolatry and he was enthusiastic about it too. שפיטם עגלים לעבודה זרה – He used to fatten the calves for the idol. When he had a mitzvah of offering a calf, he refused to bring it right away; instead he spent time fattening it so that it should be a mitzvah min hamuvchar. He was an enthusiastic idolater.
And when this man finally discovered the truth he became an enemy of idolatry. He became enthusiastic about fighting idolatry. And because of that, he was ostracized by his people. He was in danger. Nobody would even help him. And the Medrash tells us that because of that his daughters had to go out and tend his sheep. And they were persecuted until Moshe came and he rescued the daughters from the persecutors. So we see that Yisro was a man who was suffering for his principles.
Now when a man demonstrates greatness of soul, we don’t care what nation he’s from. And therefore, Tziporah was certainly a fit wife for this great man, Moshe Rabbeinu. Because he too was able to ignore his environment. He was born in a palace and he had all privileges and yet he forsook it to go out to help his downtrodden brothers. And so there’s no question that this was a perfect match and there’s nothing to criticize in the shidduch of Moshe Rabbeinu.
Now why did it turn out just like this? It could be hashgacha; Hashem wanted to teach this great lesson that the nations of the world can attain greatness if they’re willing to overstep the boundary between them and us.
And that’s what happened to great people in every generation. Rus became great because she forsook her nation and joined ours. And if you look further, you find Shmaya v’Avtalyon, the great teachers of our people, also came from converts. And you look further, you find even Rabbi Akiva is descended from converts. Rabbi Akiva is the main teacher of our people in the period of the Tanaim, from the times of the Beis Hamikdosh until the milchemes Beitar; all that we have came through his mouth. And he was the son of converts. You see Unkelus HaGer. He made Targum Unkelus. And his work is in the Chumash. It’s even printed in the Chumash above Rashi Hakodosh. Right next to the Torah itself.
And therefore, that’s a great principle that the doors are open for the chosen souls of the nations of the world. And therefore when you look at this inspiring story that Tzipora, a giyoress, was married to Moshe Rabbeinu, that’s a tremendous lesson for the world. The door to greatness is open for everyone.
TAPE # 449