וַיְהִי בַּיָּמִים הָהֵם וַיִּגְדַּל מֹשֶׁה. וְכִי אֵין הַכֹּל גְּדֵלִין, וְהָאָדָם וְהַבְּהֵמָה וְהַחַיָּה וְהָעוֹף כֻּלָּן גְּדֵלִין? אֶלָּא, מְלַמֵּד, שֶׁהָיָה גָּדֵל שֶׁלֹּא כְּדֶרֶךְ הָעוֹלָם. וַיֵּצֵא אֶל אֶחָיו, שְׁתֵּי יְצִיאוֹת יָצָא אוֹתוֹ צַדִּיק וּכְתָבָן הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, הֲרֵי אֶחָד. וַיֵּצֵא בַּיוֹם הַשֵּׁנִי, הֲרֵי שְׁתַּיִם. וַיַּרְא בְּסִבְלֹתָם. מַהוּ וַיַּרְא? שֶׁהָיָה רוֹאֶה וּבוֹכֶה בְּסִבְלוֹתָם, וְאוֹמֵר חֲבָל לִי עֲלֵיכֶם, מִי יִתֵּן מוֹתִי עֲלֵיכֶם. שֶׁאֵין לְךָ קָשֶׁה מִמְּלֶאכֶת הַטִּיט, וְהָיָה נוֹתֵן כְּתֵפָיו וּמְסַיֵּעַ לְכָל אֶחָד וְאֶחָד מֵהֶן. לְכָךְ כְּתִיב וַיַּרְא בְּסִבְלֹתָם. And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown up (Exod. 2:11). Does not everything grow up? Do not men, beasts, animals, and birds all grow up? Why, then, is this said? It teaches us that he matured to an unusual degree. And he went out unto his brethren. This righteous man went out on two occasions, and the Holy One, blessed be He, recorded them. This is one. The verse He went out the second day (ibid. 2:13) indicates that he went out twice. And he looked upon their burdens. What is the meaning of And he looked? He looked at the men as they labored and cried out: “Woe is me, would that I could die for them.” Though there is no labor more arduous than working with clay, he would put his shoulders to the tasks and help each one of them. Hence it is written: And he looked upon their burdens.
וַיַּרְא אִישׁ מִצְרִי מַכֶּה אִישׁ עִבְרִי. מִי הָיָה אִישׁ מִצְרִי? אָבִיו שֶׁל מְגַדֵּף, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וְהָיָה בֶּן אִישׁ מִצְרִי (ויקרא כד, י). מַכֶּה אִישׁ עִבְרִי, בַּעְלָהּ שֶׁל שְׁלוֹמִית בַּת דִּבְרִי. כֵּיצַד? הָיָה אוֹתוֹ נוֹגֵשׂ עָשׂוּי עַל מֵאָה וְעֶשְׂרִים אֲנָשִׁים, וְהָיָה מוֹצִיא אוֹתָן לִמְלַאכְתָּן לִקְרִיאַת הַגֶּבֶר. וּמִתּוֹךְ שֶׁהָיָה רָגִיל לְהוֹצִיאָן, הָיָה נִכְנָס וְיוֹצֵא לְבָתֵּיהֶן. רָאָה לִשְׁלוֹמִית בַּת דִּבְרִי שֶׁהָיְתָה יְפַת תֹּאַר שְׁלֵמָה מִכָּל מוּם, נָתַן עֵינָיו בָּהּ. עָמַד בִּשְׁעַת קְרִיאַת הַגֶּבֶר וְהוֹצִיאוֹ מִבֵּיתוֹ, וְחָזַר אוֹתוֹ מִצְרִי וּבָא עַל אִשְׁתּוֹ, וְהִיא סְבוּרָה שֶׁהוּא בַּעְלָהּ. חָזַר בַּעְלָהּ מָצָא הַמִּצְרִי יוֹצֵא מִבֵּיתוֹ. שָׁאַל אוֹתָהּ וְאָמַר: שֶׁמָּא נָגַע בִּיךְ. אָמְרָה לוֹ: הֵן. וּסְבוּרָה הָיִיתִי שֶׁאַתָּה הוּא. כֵּיוָן שֶׁיָּדַע הַנּוֹגֵשׂ שֶׁהִרְגִּישׁ בַּדָּבָר, חָזַר לַעֲבוֹדַת פֶּרֶךְ, וְהָיָה מַכֶּה אוֹתוֹ. And he saw an Egyptian smiting a Hebrew (Exod. 2:11). Who was this Egyptian? He was the father of the blasphemer, concerning whom it is said: And the son of the Israelitish woman blasphemed the Name (Lev. 24:11).11He was the offspring of the rape of Shelomith, an Israelite woman, by an Egyptian. The Egyptian was beating the Hebrew who was the husband of Shelomith the daughter of Dibri. Why was he beating him? This overseer was in charge of one hundred and twenty men, whom he would dispatch to their labors every morning, at the time of the crowing of the cock. Since he was wont to send them to their respective tasks, he would enter their homes. He noticed that Shelomith the daughter of Dibri was perfectly beautiful, without blemish, and he was anxious to possess her. (So one morning,) at the time of the crowing of the cock, after he (the Egyptian) had sent the Hebrew from his home, he had intercourse with the Hebrew’s wife, who thought that it was her husband who was still with her. Her husband returned (from his tasks) and observed the Egyptian leaving the house. He asked her: “Did he perhaps touch you?” “Yes, he did,” she replied, “but I thought it was you.” When the taskmaster learned that the man was angered by what had occurred, he forced him to work harder and would beat him.
רָאָה מֹשֶׁה בְּרוּחַ הַקֹּדֶשׁ מֶה עָשָׂה בְּאִשְׁתּוֹ, וְהֵיאַךְ הָיָה מַכֵּהוּ. אָמַר: לֹא דַּיְּךָ שֶׁאַתָּה עִנִּיתָ אֶת אִשְׁתּוֹ, אֶלָּא אַתָּה מַכֵּהוּ. כָּעַס עַל הַמִּצְרִי, וַיִּפֶן כֹּה וָכֹה רָאָה שֶׁעִנָּה אִשְׁתּוֹ וְהָיָה חוֹזֵר וּמַכֶּה אֶת בַּעְלָהּ. וַיַּרְא כִּי אֵין אִישׁ, שֶׁהוּא חַיָּב מִיתָה, וַיַּךְ אֶת הַמִּצְרִי. בַּמֶּה הִכָּהוּ? יֵשׁ אוֹמְרִים: הַמַּגְרֵפָה שֶׁל טִיט נָטַל וְהוֹצִיא אֶת מֹחוֹ. וְיֵשׁ אוֹמְרִים: הִזְכִּיר עָלָיו אֶת הַשֵּׁם וַהֲרָגוֹ הַלְהָרְגֵנִי אַתָּה אֹמֵר. Moses perceived through the Holy Spirit what the Egyptian had done to the man’s wife and that now he was beating her husband as well, and he said to him: “Is it not enough that you violated his wife, must you then smite him also?” He became enraged at the Egyptian, And he looked this way and that way (Exod. 2:12). Obviously, he was aware that the Egyptian had violated the woman and was now smiting her husband. When he saw that there was no man there, (he knew) that the man was destined to die at his hands: And he smote the Egyptian (ibid., v. 12). With what did he smite him? Some say that he took a trowel full of clay and smashed his skull. Others insist that he invoked the Divine Name and slew him, as it says: Sayest thou to kill me? (ibid., v. 14) (i.e., “Will you kill me with a ‘saying,’ a word?).
וַיִּטְמְנֵהוּ בַּחוֹל, אָמַר לְיִשְׂרָאֵל: אַתֶּם מְשׁוּלִין כַּחוֹל. שֶׁהַחוֹל אָדָם נוֹטְלוֹ מִכָּאן וְנוֹתְנוֹ בְּכָאן וְאֵין קוֹלוֹ נִשְׁמָע, כָּךְ לֹא יֵצֵא דָּבָר זֶה מִפִּיכֶם. לְכָךְ כְּתִיב וַיִּטְמְנֵהוּ בַּחוֹל. And he hid him in the sand (ibid., v. 12). He said to the Israelites: You are likened to sand,12Referring to Thy seed as the sand of the earth (Gen. 32:13). which moves soundlessly from one place to another; so, too, no word of this must depart from your mouths. Therefore it is written: And he hid him in the sand (ibid.).