vaYishlach

Time Period 5780 (2019).

Week of 10 Kislev (December 8) — Shabbat 16 Kislev (December 14)

Bereishit (Genesis) 32:4—36:43

Haftarah
Obadiah 1:1—21

Ya’akov avinu – Jacob our father – the man of truth, wrestles throughout the night with a mysterious angel. The dust that they kick up is precious in G-d’s eyes, as Ya’akov, by virtue of his dedication to truth, becomes “Israel, because you have commanding power with [an angel of] G-d and with men, and you have prevailed.” Genesis 31:29)

“Shall he treat our sister like a harlot.” (Genesis 34:31) What was the real message in the words exchanged between Shimon and Levi and their father Ya’akov, after they had slaughtered all the men-folk of Shechem? The Targum Yonatan reveals an inner truth and its lessons concerning today’s dilemma over the releasing of terrorists for the freeing of Gilad Shalit.

Ya’akov avinu’s (our forefather Jacob’s) midnight encounter with a mysterious angel: Who was this angel, what was his purpose, and by what name was he known? Ya’akov overcomes the angel, and by doing so gains insight into all these questions. He also acquires for himself a new name, a new identity, and a new role to play in establishing the Divine presence here on this earth.

 

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