Miriam and Aaron speak negatively about Moses for marrying a Kushite woman. Does their issue have to do with her skin color? Miriam’s punishment may hold the key.
Sidnie White Crawford
The Israelite men are commanded to separate from their wives before the revelation at Sinai. The rabbis learn from this that Moses permanently separated from his wife (Num 12), to be available to speak with God at all times. Joseph ibn Kaspi (14th c.), however, claims that this distorts the plain meaning of the text and that celibacy is an affront to Jewish values.