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Table Talk-Shemot-Conflict-Murder or Adultery Print E-mail

Table-Talk-Shabbat-Parsha-Discussions-Shemot-Shemos“One day, after Moses had grown up, he went out to where his own people were and watched them at their hard labor. He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people. Looking this way and that and seeing no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand. The next day he went out and saw two Hebrews fighting. He asked the wicked one, ‘Why are you hitting your fellow Hebrew?’(2:11-13)” Moshe was addressing the one being hit as a wicked man for intending to hit back (Rashi). Did Moshe expect the second man to allow himself to be hit without hitting back? Why is he considered a wicked person for defending himself?

 

My Rebbi, Rabbi Yochanan Zweig posits that they had decided to use a fist fight to deal with whatever was bothering them. The wicked person is the one who wants to resolve a conflict in a destructive way.

Rabbi Zweig applies this to the students of Rabbi Akiva, who allowed themselves to resolve their conflicts by speaking negatively of each other, what the Talmud means when it says that they did not treat each other with respect but with Lishon Harah - they resolved their conflicts by speaking negatively of each other, their lowest common denominator.

Murder or Adultery:

“He saw an Egyptian beating a Hebrew, one of his own people. Looking this way and that and seeing no one, he killed the Egyptian and hid him in the sand.” The Talmud derives from here that, ‘An idol worshipper hitting a Jew is liable for the death penalty.’ The Rambam says, death through the Hands of Heaven, which is what Rashi means when he says that Moshe killed the Egyptian with the Name of God. However, Rashi also says that the Egyptian was committing adultery with Shlomit bat Divri. How can the Talmud derive that he deserved death for hitting the Jew, perhaps he was executed because of the adultery?


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