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See Rashi (Shemos 2:12) "וירא כי אין איש" - שאין איש עתיד לצאת ממנו שיתגייר : Before Moshe Killed the Egyptian he looked [into the future] and saw that no person would descend from the Egyptian who would convert to Judaism. Obviously, in order to look into the future, Moshe had to transcend to where the dimension of time does not exist(למעלה מן הזמן). In the plane of למעלה מן הזמן everything of the past, the present, and the future exist simultaneously. This being so, the "future" which Moshe saw also included the act of his killing the Egyptian, (which he eventually did). Thus, it would be obvious that he would see that no person would descend from the [killed] Egyptian who would convert to Judaism, so what was he looking for?

  • Couldn't he be given insight into potential futures as well, wherein no descendant converts? – rosends Apr 26 '18 at 20:33
  • @rosends I'm sorry I'm not well versed on the subject of "above the plane of time" nor on the subject of having the ability to view that, so I cannot answer whether "potential futures" can be seen by someone who has a view of the future. – RibbisRabbiAndMore Apr 26 '18 at 20:46
  • You are making assumptions both about time and about the nature of Moshe Rabbeinu’s investigation. The Torah defines time as either זמן המשוער or זמן בלתי המשוער. The language is about linear time vs. non-linear. Linear time (past-present-future) is what we perceive naturally. The fact that the reference is to a linear component indicates Moshe was not gazing at the level of זמן בלתי המשוער. – Yaacov Deane Apr 26 '18 at 22:13
  • Similarly, the language איש implies a particular type of human being (איש גבר), someone who overcomes their nature, that Moshe was looking for. There are other sources that say Moshe looked both forward and backward to see what might come and also what merits lay in his past. So it is possible to say the expression איש is referring to the Egyptian that Moshe was looking at in the present only. That he would not overcome his nature and convert. – Yaacov Deane Apr 26 '18 at 22:22
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    I would read it as a potential, looking forward to see what would happen if he did not kill the Egyptian. Once he saw that, then he was able to kill the Egyptian. Looking into the future, implies as things are at this moment. At that moment the Egyptian wasa still alive and therefore had potential descendants. – sabbahillel Apr 26 '18 at 22:41

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