zi por e (or) zip ere
"Sparrow or Swallow"
Zipporah is most remembered for saving the life of her husband Moses during an attack by God on Moses. Moses was returning to Egypt from the desert to confront Pharaoh and lead the children of Israel out of Egypt and he was attacked by God. The reason for the attack is not very clear. Zipporah, it seems, surmised that the attack had something to do with the Abrahamic covenant. She seems to have concluded that the covenant had been violated in some manner. She immediately proceeded to circumcise her son. When she completed the circumcision the attack on her husband ceased. (Exodus 4:19-28)
Moses, on his way to deliver Israel from bondage had forgotten the very foundational sign of the covenant between Jehovah God and the people of Israel, namely circumcision. Without circumcision an Israelite was cut off from the covenant and from God. God used a Midianite to remind Moses of God's Word and to save the life of the great liberator of His people.
At some point Zipporah and the boys were sent back to her father's house in Midian. Then at some point after Moses had led the people of Israel out of Egypt, she and the boys rejoined Moses. We don't know why they were sent home. Some surmise that Moses was concerned for their safety in the event something went wrong with the confrontation with Pharaoh or with the exodus.
It is interesting to note that she must have been gone for quite some time. Many scholars speculate that while she was gone Moses married an Ethiopian women. They think this is the women that both Aaron and Miriam "spoke against" and despised in Numbers 12:1.
2010 A-Z Challenge: Z is for Zacchaeus
2011 A-Z Challenge: Z is for Zipporah