Va’yigash-And He Drew near
Vayigash | ויגש | “He approached ” – “–Yehudah Approaches Yosef – A Foreshadowing of REDEMPTION
–Yosef is Torah and Yehudah is prayer. The service of G-d from below to above is prayer, while the service from above to below is Torah. our sages taught: “The righteous in death are called living”. Yosef is still alive!
–Vayigashu… ani Yeshua akhikhem…” “Please come near to me… I am Yeshua your brother…”
The Eleventh reading from the book of Genesis is named Vayigash (ויגש), which means “and he came near.” “Then Judah (came near]) him” (Genesis 44:18). This torah portion begins with the revealing of Yosef’s true identity and his reconciliation with his brothers. finally, it describes the story of the migration of Jacob’s family to Egypt and the rest of the famine years.
- Judah pleads with Yosef to free Benjamin and offers himself as a replacement. – Genesis 44:18-34
- Yosef reveals himself to his brothers and forgives them for selling him into slavery. –Genesis 45:1-15
- Pharaoh invites Joseph’s family to “live off the fat of the land.” – Genesis 45:16-24
- Jacob learns that Joseph is still alive. -Genesis 45:25-46:33
- Pharaoh permits Joseph’s family to settle in Goshen.- Genesis 47:1-12
- Yosef designs a plan for the Egyptians to trade their livestock and land for food. . –Genesis 47:13-27
Judah now approached him and said, “By your leave, my lord, please give your servant a hearing, and do not let your anger flare up at your servant- for you are like Pharaoh”. – Genesis 48:18
Kings were assembled: Rabbi Yehuda began the discussion with the verse, “For the kings were assembled” ( Psalms 48:5 ): These are Judah and Joseph, who were both kings. Rabbi Chiya said, The secret of this verse applies to correction through offering, for when a sacrifice is offered, everyone receives their provision, each according to what he deserves, and then all is joined as one, all faces shine, and one bond prevails NAMELY, ONE UNION. Then, “the kings were assembled” to atone for transgressions and make them pass away. When, “the kings were assembled,” MALE AND FEMALE, and were connected, “they passed together” NAMELY, THEY ATONED FOR THEIR SINS so as to cause all faces to shine and make all of one accord.
Rabbi Yehuda and Rabbi Chiya discourse on the meeting of the Kings, Judah and Joseph, which symbolizes the union of the Supernal World Zeir Anpin and the Lower World of Malchut.
This studies portion opens with Judah’s speech, a turning point for Joseph. Until now Joseph has concealed his true identity from his brothers while putting them through a test of character. Have they changed? Or are they still the same brothers who once robbed him of his freedom, and nearly cost him his life? Judah’s plea, declaring his willingness to give his own life in order to bring Benjamin home to their father, brings the matter to a head. Joseph is deeply moved, and reveals himself with the words: ‘I am Joseph your brother…’ -Genesis 45:4 .
YEHUDAH APPROACHES YOSEPH – A FORESHADOWING OF REDEMPTION
The theme of the redemption is understood by the prophets books, which speaks about the ultimate union of Yosef and Yehudah: Yehudah approached Yosef: The Zohar understands their union as symbolizing the approach of the physical world to spiritual world.
In Chabad it is written that Yosef represents learning while Yehudah represents action. Which is greater? In our world, learning is great (Yosef is still higher than Yehudah) because it allows action. In the future it will be action that will be greater. There is another explanation that Yosef is Torah and Yehudah is prayer. The service of G-d from below to above is prayer, while the service from above to below is Torah.
This unification is a role of Messiah ben Yosef: “the unification of Yesod and Malchut” — This is one of the principal missions of Mashiach ben Yosef: To unify heaven and earth, to unify the two meshichim, which means the tree of Yosef with the tree of Judah during the awakening from below with the joining of Jerusalem above ( Galatians 4 : 26) with Jerusalem below by a rebuilt Jerusalem. Then it will be like a city that is united together –Psalms 122:3.
The relationship Messiah ben Yosef has to the earthly and heavenly realms has to do with his parents and how they are seen as connected to the earthly and heavenly worlds: Mashiach ben Yosef is the miraculous power who will assist every act done when the awakening starts from below, in a natural manner, because he comes from the earth. Mashiach ben David, however, will come from Heaven as revealed by the different aspects of Rachel and Leah, and as known regarding the footsteps of the Mashiach and the revealed end. Mashiach ben Yosef himself is a composite of two aspects: on the one hand, he is Yosef the son of Rachel of the land; on the other hand, he is Yosef son of Jacob from Heaven.
For I ( Word became flesh) have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me- John 6 : 38
What had been perceived as “bad” by Joseph, at the end, it was all “for the good.”
Joseph Words in Genesis 45:5: But now, do not therefore be grieved or angry with yourselves because you sold me here; for G-d sent me before you to preserve life.
As we are told: And we know that all things work together for good to them that love G-d, to them who are the called according to his purpose – Romans 8:28
Talmud, Megilah 25a – Everything is in the hands of heaven except the fear of heaven.
The sages say that when Yehudah approached Yosef , and it is describing the three things: War, Peace and Prayer.
Rabbi Eleazar combined all these views: Judah approached Joseph for all three, saying: If it be war, I approach for war; if it be conciliation, I approach for conciliation; if it be for entreaty, I approach to entreat – Midrash Rabbah
And He Drew Close….Eleazar ben Judah (c.1165-c.1230), author of the Sefer Rokeach, made the fascinating suggestion that these three steps correspond to the three times in the Hebrew Bible where the word Vayigash, “and he drew close,” is used in connection with prayer.
Three approaches, three prayers , but very different from one another. Abraham prays for justice. Judah prays for mercy. Elijah prays for G-d to reveal himself.
The first is the moment when Abraham hears of G-d’s intention to destroy Sodom and Gemorah and the cities of the plain. “Abraham approached [vayigash] and said: Will You sweep away the righteous with the wicked? . . . Shall the Judge of all the earth not do justice?” –Genesis 18: 23-25.
The second occurs, Joseph’s silver goblet has been found in Benjamin’s sack. Joseph – whose true identity is still unknown to the brothers – says that Benjamin will now be held as his slave. The others may go free. Judah, having given Jacob his personal guarantee of Benjamin’s safe return, now pleads for his release. “Then Judah drew close [vayigash] to him and said: Please, my lord, let your servant speak a word to my lord” –Genesis 44: 18.
The third appears in the great confrontation at Mount Carmel between the prophet Elijah and the 450 false prophets of Baal. Elijah proposes a test. Let each side prepare a sacrifice and call on the name of their deity. The one that sends fire is the true G-d. The 450 prophets do so. They prepare the sacrifice and ask Baal to send fire. Nothing happens. They cry all day, shouting, gyrating, lacerating themselves and working themselves into a frenzy but no fire comes. Then “Elijah stepped forward [vayigash] and prayed: O Lord, G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Israel, let it be known today that you are G-d in Israel and that I am your servant and have done all these things at your command.” Fire descends, and the people fall to the ground, saying: “The Lord, He is G-d. The Lord, He is G-d” (I Kings 18).
The Sages said: It implies coming near for prayer, as in the verse (I Kings, 18:36), “And it came to pass at the time of the evening offering, that Elijah the prophet approached…”
Said Rabbi Judah: The verb “he approached” (vayigash), implies an approach to battle, as in the verse (II Samuel 10:13), “So Joab and the people that were with him approached unto battle.”
Rabbi Nechemiah said: The verb “he approached” implies a coming near for conciliation, as in the verse (Joshua 14:6), “Then the children of Judah approached Joshua ( Efrayim).”
Redemption and Peace:
Is Yehudah willing to approach Yosef? And Then Yehudah came near unto him(Yosef) … …And said, “O my master, please let your servant speak a word in my master’s hearing, and do not let your displeasure burn against your servant, for you are like Pharaoh. – Genesis 44 :18
Zohar writings: On the verse: “FOR THOU ART EVEN AS PHARAOH”: Rabbi Schneerson quotes the source saying that Judah meant to say that Joseph is as powerful as Pharaoh and that Judah acknowledges his authority. Judah acknowledged the authority of Joseph. Because of this Judah merited the Promise in Ezekiel 37, “MY SERVANT DAVID SHALL BE THEIR PRINCE FOR EVER”. The Rabbi says that in order for Judah to bring on the Messiah, to help the Messiah come, and realize the promise given to his seed (“MY SERVANT DAVID SHALL BE THEIR PRINCE FOR EVER”) Judah must first do as the Patriarch Judah did when he CAME NEAR UNTO Joseph and he acknowledged the authority of Joseph and initially was influenced from Joseph.
Rabbi Yehuda said, Happy are the righteous, whose coming together brings Peace into the world, for they know how to bring union and approach each other to increase peace in the world. For until Joseph and Judah came near each other, there was no peace. Once they came near each other, Peace increased in the world. Joy abounded above and below, when Joseph and Judah approached each other, and all the tribes joined Joseph.
Rabbi Elazar said, “Then Judah came near to him.” Why? He answers, This is how it ought to have been, for he became surety, as it is written, “For your servant became surety for the boy.” The secret is that Judah and Joseph should have approached each other simultaneously, because Joseph is righteous, NAMELY, YESOD OF ZEIR ANPIN and Judah is a king, NAMELY, MALCHUT, THE NUKVA OF ZEIR ANPIN. Therefore, “Then Judah came near to him,” because their coming together produced many benefits for the world, resulted in peace among all the tribes, Peace between themselves BETWEEN JUDAH AND JOSEPH and caused the spirit of Jacob to revive, as it is written, “the spirit of Jacob their father revived” (Beresheet 45:27). Hence, their joining together was needed by all sides, above and below.
In the Midrash, Rabbi Meir says that Vayigash implies peace. The final letters of the first three words are “equal,” but Rabbi Meir says that the word ויגש, to approach, implies Peace.
Look toward the mountains, people of Judah! Here comes a Messenger with good news of Peace – Nahum 1 : 15
“As Yeshua approached Yerushalayim and saw the city, He wept over it and said, ‘If you, even you, had only known on this day what would bring you Peace – but now it is hidden from your eyes’” – Luke 19:41-42
You who bring good news to Tziyon, get yourself up on a high mountain;
you who bring good news to Yerushalayim, cry out at the top of your voice!
Don’t be afraid to shout out loud! Say to the cities of Y’hudah,
“Here is your G-d! – Isaiah 40 : 9
“Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled [alone], for fear of the Jews [Pharisees and the elders], Yeshua came and stood in the midst, and said to them, Peace be with you. – John 20:19
A week later his talmidim were once more in the room, and this time T’oma was with them. Although the doors were locked, Yeshua came, stood among them and said, “Shalom aleikhem!” (Peace be upon you)– John 20 : 26
..Stand up and lift up your heads, because your Redemption is drawing near – Luke 21 : 28
And coming up at that very hour she began to give thanks to Most High and to Speak of him to all who were waiting for the Redemption of Jerusalem
– Luke 2 : 38
We had hoped he was the Messiah who had come to Redeem Israel – Luke 24 : 21
In this Weekly Torah portion, Joseph’s brothers refuse to return to Canaan without Benjamin, whom Joseph has falsely accused of theft. Joseph reveals his true identity and invites his brothers to go back for their father Jacob and move with him and their families to Egypt. When they return, Joseph introduces his father to Pharaoh, and, at Pharaoh’s suggestion, the family settles in Goshen, a particularly fertile region of Egypt.
Yosef’s Death :
It’s written: “An evil animal consumed him” (Genesis 37:33) and also: “and Yakov mourned for his son many days” –Genesis 37:34.
This hints at Messiah’s ben Yosef’s death in his Battle against the evil Inclination. An ‘evil animal’ is the Seir (meaning goat, or demon, also being the mount of Edom, and the aspect of Esav when he was born). The ‘evil animal’ is also the snake that tempted Eve, who is Amalek and Samael. In the secret of: “They will look upon me because of the one whom they pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child” (Zech 12:10; cf. Sukka 52a).
The Mission of Messiah ben Yosef is to fight and defeat the Evil Inclination – even though he dies during his mission, as it’s written: “an evil animal devoured him” (Genesis 37:33).
OD YOSEF CHAI – Yosef is still ALIVE:
But does Messiah ben Yosef really die? For it’s written: “Od Yosef Hai” – ‘Yosef is still alive’ (Genesis 45:28). As the entire redemption depends on his role, Messiah ben Yosef lives. Even when he dies, he lives, thus our sages taught: “The righteous in death are called living” (Berakhot 18b).
Of this is written also: “He made his grave with the wicked… If his soul offers itself as an asham [guilt offering] he will see seed and prolong his days” -Isaiah 53:10.
……and the Living one. I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore. Amen. I have the keys of Death and of Sheol.’ -Revelation 1:18
“R. Johanan said: Three keys the Holy One blessed be He has retained in His own hands and not entrusted to the hand of any messenger, namely, the Key of Rain, the Key of Childbirth, and the Key of the Revival of the Dead.” -Talmud, Ta’anit 2a
After twenty two years of concealment, Yosef reveals himself to his brothers, “Joseph said to his brothers, Come near to me, please. They came near. He said, I am Joseph, your brother, whom you sold into Egypt. Now don’t be grieved, nor angry with yourselves, that you sold me here, for G-d sent me before you to preserve life.” -Genesis 45:4-5
“They (the brothers) went up out of Egypt, and came into the land of Canaan, to Yaakov their father. They told him, saying, ‘Joseph is still alive, and he is ruler over all the land of Egypt!’His heart fainted, for he did not believe them.” -Genesis 45:25-26
“They told him all the words of Yosef, which he had said to them. When he saw the wagons which Yosef had sent to carry him, the spirit of Yaakov, their father, revived. Israel said, ‘It is enough. Joseph my son is still alive…’ -Genesis 45:27-28
In the above passage, and incredible transformation takes place. Yaakov becomes Israel! “…the spirit of Yaakov, their father, revived (וַתְּחִי רוּחַ יַעֲקֹב). Israel said, “It is enough, Yosef my son is still alive.”
When Israel believes that the Mashiach ben Yosef is alive, the ‘spirit revives’, the Resurrection of the Dead will occur. There is a famous Jewish song about King David that says:
דוד מלך ישראל, חי, חי וקיים – David Melech, Melech Yisrael, David Melech, Melech Yisrael, Melech Yisrael, chai v’kayam! (David, King of Israel, lives and endures!)
The book Kol HaTor connects this to to the phrase Od Yosef Chai, Yosef is still alive,
“The two meshichim cooperate and help one another: Mashiach ben Yosef, as revealed in the words “Yosef still lives”; and Mashiach ben David, as revealed in the words “David, King of Israel is alive and exists.” They are alive and exist in every generation, carry out their missions, and affect one another with their powers and special attributes. Thus they need one another. Without the abundance of their strength, their might, and their endowments, Israel could not exist for even one moment, God forbid. However, they–their powers, images, and endowments–are hidden as long as our many sins cause Israel and the Shechina to remain in exile. We must know that these two great powers can operate and their strength can affect, even totally affect events, only when no one disturbs or separates them.” -Kol HaTor 2.1, translated by R’ Yechiel bar Lev and K. Skaist, pg. 27
However, from our point of view and perspective, we should try to bring with our deeds the complete Redemption, so that Messiah ben Yosef would not die at the hands of Armilus (the spiritual force that is the leader of the Erev Rav– mixed multitude – who try to separate Israel from Messiah’s redemption). This is the secret in the Amidah’s prayer: “speedily establish the throne of your servant David” The Arizal says that the “throne of David” refers to Messiah ben Yosef (cf. Shaar haKavanot 37a).
“Yosef is still alive. Alive still is Yosef. The son of David is alive and exists. A righteous person lives by his faith. The the tree of Yosef and the tree of Judah will become one in the hand of the L-rd…” -Kol HaTor 5, translated by R’ Yechiel bar Lev and K. Skaist, pg. 118
The basic approach of the Gaon is encapsulated in the principle “Yosef is still alive, ” meaning that the Mashiach ben Yosef is still alive and will live, because, as it is written, every aspect of the beginning of the Redemption is dependent on him…”
-Kol HaTor 1.6, translated by R’ Yechiel bar Lev and K. Skaist, pg. 5
The True besorah: Mashiach ben Yosef is alive! Od Yeshua chai! Yeshua is still alive. As the angel said, Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Yeshua, who has been crucified. He is not here, for he has risen…” -Matthew 28:5-6
If Israel deeds were worthy Ben Yosef shouldn’t physically die, as it’s written: “Today, if you hear my voice”. Meaning, if you hear my voice today as a nation, Messiah ben David would come today (since all prophecies are dependant on Israel’s behaviour) (cf. Shemot Rabbah 25:16). As our sages taught: “If Israel is worthy he will come with the clouds of heaven” and “if Israelis not worthy, Messiah will come riding a donkey” (Sanh 98b). It is thus taught in a tradition: “He who sees a donkey in his dream should expect salvation because it says, ‘Behold your King comes to you triumphant, victorious, humble and riding a donkey’” (Berakhot 56b;cf. Zech 9:9).
But is Israel worthy to speed the coming of Messiah ben David? Not in the past – remember two Temples were destroyed – therefore Ben Yosef was needed, for it’s written: “All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned everyone to his own way, and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all” (Isaiah 53:6-7); and this verse is concerning Messiah (cf. Sanh 98b; David Kimkhi).
But does Messiah ben Yosef really die? Certainly not. For it’s written: “Od Yosef Hai” – ‘Yosef is still alive’ (Genesis 45:28). As the entire redemption depends on his role, Messiah ben Yosef lives. Even when he dies, he lives, thus our sages taught: “The righteous, even after death are called alive” (Berakhot 18b).
Rabbi Yeshayah Horovitz wrote: “Messiah Ben Yosef will not come for his own sake, but he will come for the sake of Messiah ben David. For he will offer up his life and pour out his life to death (Isaiah 53:12) and his blood will atone for the people with HaShem. In this manner it will be afterward that the kingdom of the house of David shall preside forever among the people of Israel” (Shnei Luhot haBrit pg. 299b).
YOSEF IS NOT RECOGNIZED:
If Israel does not accept and does not recognize Messiah, he will embody Ben Yosef, but will not be ‘Ben David’. For it’s written: “Yosef recognizes his brothers, but they don’t recognize him” (Genesis 42:8).
They said: “Will you actually reign over us?” -Genesis 37:8.
“In his generation and in every generation, Messiah ben Yosef recognizes his brothers, but they don’t recognize him. This is a deed from Satan, who hides the attributes of Messiah ben Yosef… had Israel recognized Yosef… they would have been completely redeemed” (Vilna Gaon; Kol haTor 2:39).
Yosef is not accepted by his brothers, as hinted in the phrase: “Ben Akher” (a heretic son) (Genesis 30:24). Now notice how the name “Yosef” is hinted into the text when the Torah says: “And they hated him even more” –Genesis 37:5.
It was in the world, and the world was made through it, and the world did not recognize it. -John 1:10
Kol HaTor says, “Yosef recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him — This is one of the traits of Yosef not only in his own generation, but in every generation, i.e., that Mashiach ben Yosef recognizes his brothers, but they do not recognize him. This is the work of Satan, who hides the characteristics of Mashiach ben Yosef so that the footsteps of the Mashiach are not recognized and are even belittled because of our many sins. (See below 103). Otherwise, our troubles would already have ended. Were Israel to recognize Yosef, that is, the footsteps of ben Yosef the Mashiach which is the ingathering of the exiles etc., then we would already have been redeemed with a complete redemption.”
Kol HaTor 2:39, translated by R’ Yechiel Bar Lev and K. Skaist, pg. 37
Kol HaTor notes: even the scholars will be struck with blindness, “How strong is the force of the Sitra Achra that he managed to hide from the eyes of our holy forefathers the danger of the klipot layers: from the eyes of our forefather Abraham, the klipaof Ismael; from the eyes of our forefather Isaac, the klipa of Esau; and from the eyes of our forefather Jacob, the klipa of the terafim. During the footsteps of the Mashiach, the Sitra Achra becomes even stronger, in order to strike Biblical scholars with blindness.”
Kol HaTor 5, translated by R’ Yechiel bar Lev and K. Skaist, pg. 122
Kol Hator listing 156 aspects of Messiah ben Joseph: Yosef recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him — This is one of the traits of Yosef not only in his own generation, but in every generation, i.e., that Mashiach ben Yosef recognizes his brothers, but they do not recognize him. This is the work of Satan, who hides the characteristics of Mashiach ben Yosef so that the footsteps of the Mashiach are not recognized and are even belittled because of our many sins. Otherwise, our troubles would already have ended. Were Israel to recognize Yosef, that is, the footsteps of ben Yosef the Mashiach which is the ingathering of the exiles etc., then we would already have been redeemed with a complete redemption. (Kol Hator, Chapter 2, Aspect #39)
It came to its own, and its own did not receive it. -John 1:11
Rabbi Samson explicitly identifies Korakh with Yeshu in his commentary on Rabbi Menahem’s work. Among other things he notices that the expression “the man” (ha’Ish) which is used to refer Korakh (Numbers 16:22) equals 316 in Gematria, which is the Gematria of “Yeshu”. Yeshu is in this sense seen as “the Messiah of the gentiles”. And even though at face value their depiction of Yeshua could not be more negative, the truth is that it conceals lots of supernal and positive mysteries. But Yeshua’s concealment and process of being unrecognized is part of the role he fulfils as Messiah ben Yosef (cf. Kol haTor 2:39), as it is written: “Yosef recognized his brothers, but they did not recognize him” -(Genesis 42:8).
There is a tradition in a text called the Secrets of R’ Shimon bar Yochai, that Mashiach will be concealed and rejected, “The Messiah of the lineage of Ephraim shall die there, and Israel shall mourn for him. After this the Holy One blessed be He will reveal to them the Messiah of the lineage of David, but Israel will wish to stone him, and they will say to him: ‘You speak a lie, for the Messiah has already been slain, and there is no other Messiah destined to arise.’ They will scorn him, as Scripture says: ‘despised and abandoned (by) men’ (Isaiah 53:3). He shall withdraw and be hidden from them, as Scripture continues: ‘like one hiding faces from us’ . But in Israel’s great distress, they will turn and cry out from (their) hunger and thirst, and the Holy One, blessed be He, will be revealed to them in His glory, as Scripture promises: ‘together all flesh will see’ (Isaiah 40:5). And the King Messiah will sprout up there, as Scripture says: ‘and behold with the clouds of heaven etc.’ (Daniel 7:13), and it is written after it ‘and authority was given to him’ (Daniel 7:14). He shall blow (his breath) at that wicked Armilos and kill him, as Scripture forecasts: ‘he will slay the wicked one with the breath of his lips’ (Isaiah 11:4).”
Nistarot ben Shimon bar Yochai, translated by John C. Reeves 
Rabbi Pinchas Winston, in a current (December, 2001) Torah commentary, offers the following insight concerning the role of the suffering Messiah and his effect on heavenly tikkun. This idea will come into play when we analyze events occuring in the heavenly realms: In hindsight, it is clear that Yosef ended up in jail as a stepping stone to become second-in-command of Egypt. Certainly, there are other more pleasant ways to promote a person in life. However, Divine Providence chose this route for Yosef for reasons that may be known only to Heaven. On the other hand, the fact that Yosef was able to succeed and remain spiritually unscathed even in the lowest part of the lowly Egypt, was a tremendous comment about Yosef’s spiritual stature. Furthermore, he did not lose his ability to reveal the unknown even while he was there, evident by his ability to correctly interpret the dreams of Paroah’s servants who “happened” to be in prison at the same time he was there. This, perhaps, is the basis of Yosef’s ability to play such an important role in the Final Redemption of the Jewish people, when they seem to be at their spiritual lowest. If the first Moshiach to come – Moshiach ben Yosef – is a spiritual heir to his illustrious ancestor, then a major part of his success will be his ability to reveal the hidden ONLY FOR THE SAKE OF HEAVEN, (many can do it for their own gain and glory), to act as a pure and successful channel for the Light of G-d.
… That is Moshiach ben Yosef, someone from whom the unadulterated truth will flow like a stream of clear, refreshing, life-giving water. He will be a person so pure, so devoted to the will of G-d, that the Light of G-d will be drawn to him like metal filings to a magnet, and all that he does will be successful. His truth will be like fire that will burn up the straw – the lie – of Eisav. If so, why must he die in the process of bringing redemption (Succah 53a), only to be revived again by Moshiach ben Dovid, the final Moshiach?
“On the third day, Abraham lifted up his eyes and saw the Place afar off” –Genesis 22:4.
“He saw the Place” refers to the vision of Yakov when he received the vision of the Ladder, as it’s written: “he took of the stones of that Place” (Genesis 28:11).
Resurrection is discernible on the third day (Tekhiah nikhar baYom haShlishi).
Therefore Yonah went out of the belly of Sheol at the third day (cf. Yonah 1:17, 2:2).
Come, and let us return unto the LORD: for he hath torn, and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up. After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight. – Hosea 6:1-4
Then [Yeshua] opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, and he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day [te trite hemera]” -Luke 24:46.
“From afar off” refers to a distant time. He saw Yakov and his spiritual level ‘from afar off’– in a far future; which also means not clearly; blurry as through a glass [aspaklaria – speculum] (cf. Zohar).
It doesn’t say: I will come back, but we will come back. Abraham said: “we will bow down… and come back to you” –Genesis 22:5.
“Rav Yehuda said, ‘When the knife reached his throat, his soul ascended and Isaac died. When God made his voice heard from between the Keruvim saying, Do not raise a hand to the boy, his soul returned to his body; Isaac arose and stood on his feet. Isaac knew that this is how the dead would be resurrected in the future, and he said, Blessed are You who resurrects the dead” -(Pirkei d’Rabbi Eliezer, Ch. 30 (4).
Abraham reasoned that G-d could even raise the dead, and so in a manner of speaking he did receive Isaac back from death. -Hebrews 11:19
Mashiach ben Yosef is resurrected by Mashiach ben David. The two become one at the resurrection: Here Isaac is in the aspect of Messiah ben Yosef, as it’s written: “he was led as a lamb to the slaughter” –Isaiah 53:7.
The force of the Soul of a Righteous Messiah in the likeness of Yosef, who is rejected by his brothers, but becomes the paradigm of Righteousness and the bridge of Redemption. For it’s stated about Yosef: “he became the shepherd, the stone of Israel” (Genesis 49:24), and then we read: “the stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone” (Psalms 118:22) (cf. Zohar bamidbar).
Messiah ben Yosef is in the aspect of “a fountain of Salvation”: Howard Schwartz in his incredible compilation of Jewish midrash and aggadah, notes, “Lubavitch theologians searched the existing messianic traditions that the Rebbe…was the Messiah. Here they encountered two apparently contradictory traditions. One holds that the Messiah is a divine figure, who makes his home in a heavenly palace. The other tradition holds that the Messiah will be the Tzaddik ha-Dor, the greatest sage of his generation – a human being. . . the earthly human Messiah was identified as Messiah ben Joseph, who was said to pave the way for the heavenly Messiah, known as Messiah ben David. However, this myth held that Messiah ben Joseph would lose his life in the process. Before the death of the Rebbe, Jacob Immanuel Schochet, a prominent Lubavitch scholar, often lectured on the subject of the Messiah…in these lectures, Schochet presented a new messianic theory, combining the myths of Messiah ben Joseph and Messiah ben David into a single myth. Here, rather than having one Messiah prepare the way for the other, the figure of the Messiah was simultaneously human and divine. This was made possible by the descent of the soul of the heavenly Messiah into the body of the human one. Thus, in the Lubavitch view, the heavenly Messiah himself will not descend, but merely his soul, which will fuse with the soul of the human Messiah…”
-Tree of Souls, Howard Schwartz, Oxford University Press, pg. 486-487
‘As a Lamb’ (kaShe) = 325. 325 is the Gematria of “haNaar” (the Lad, or the young boy) name used by Abraham to refer Isaac in his binding; also the name used in Maasei Merkava to refer Enoch and MemTet (cf. Sefer Heikhalot 3:2); therefore, this name is an aspect of Messiah ben Yosef.
“In your seed all the nations of the earth will be blessed, because you have listened to my voice” –Genesis 22:18.
THE REUNIFICATION OF EPHRAIM AND JUDAH:
“Then Joseph could not restrain himself before all them that stood by him …” (Beresheet 45:1). Rabbi Chiya opened the discussion with the verse, “He has distributed freely, he has given to the poor; his righteousness endures for ever; his horn shall be exalted with honor” (Tehilim 112:9).
And that he [Yahweh] might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory, even us, whom he hath called, not of the Judahites only, but also of the Gentiles ( i.e dispersed ones of Israel). As he saith also in Osee[Hosea], I will call them my people, which were not my people…. – Romans 9:23-25
All The Twelve Tribes cannot be saved unless they are brought back into the unity (Echad). “Israel will not be redeemed until the House of Judah and the House of Israel will be united.”
To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time…….. -Hebrews 9 : 28
The Midrash of Bereshit Rabbah regarding “And he Wept aloud” (Gen 45:2) . Yosef didn’t Make peace with his brothers only through crying, also the Most High doesn’t redeem Israel only through crying .. As it is written: “ They shall come with weeping, and with supplications and i will lead them – Jeremiah 31 :9
The above verse was said regarding the ten tribes as Yosef revealed ( (He shall undo his Egyptian dress) himself to his brothers through Crying hinting that in the future the ten tribes will reveal under the divine mandate of Mashiach ben Yosef as we love to call Yeshua our Mashiach.
- His first tears –(Genesis 42:24)
- His second tears -(Genesis 43:30)
- The third tears -(Genesis 45:1-2)
- His fourth tears -(Genesis 45:14-15)
- His fifth tears -(Genesis 46:29)
- His sixth tears -(Genesis. 50:1)
- The seventh and last weeping -(Genesis. 50:17)
As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it -Luke 19:41
Yeshua wept. – John 11:35
During his life on earth, Jesus prayed to G-d, who could save him from death. He prayed and pleaded with loud crying and tears, and he was heard because of his devotion to G-d. – Hebrews 5 : 7
Joseph (Lost tribes of Israel) and Judah are destined to RE-UNITE : The TWO Nations Back together into ONE nation / ONE people With ONE Shepherd.
Haftarat Vayigash – ‘And he came near’ (Ezekiel 37:15-28)
The sages chose the haftarah portion from Ezekiel 37:15-28 because of the reconciliation of Judah and Joseph. The Ezekiel passage speaks of the reconciliation of the two kingdoms of Judah and Israel. Ephraim was Joseph’s son, and Jacob’s adopted son. The reunification of tribes Judah and Ephraim is to speak of the reunification of all twelve tribes – Israel, one people, one nation under one King .
Ezekiel Thirty Seven starts with the vision of the Valley of Dry Bones: Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They indeed say, ‘Our bones are dry, our hope is lost, and we ourselves are cut off!’ Therefore prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says HaShem AD-NAI: “Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am HaShem, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up from your graves. I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I, HaShem, have spoken it and performed it,” says HaShem.’” -Ezekiel 37:11-14
Again the word of HaShem came to me, saying, “As for you, son of man, take a stick for yourself and write on it: ‘For Judah and for the children of Israel, his companions.’ Then take another stick and write on it, ‘For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel, his companions.’ Then join them one to another for yourself into one stick, and they will become one in your hand. And when the children of your people speak to you, saying, ‘Will you not show us what you mean by these?’ – say to them, ‘Thus says HaShem AD-NAI: “Surely I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel, his companions; and I will join them with it, with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they will be one in My hand.”‘ And the sticks on which you write will be in your hand before their eyes. Then say to them, ‘Thus says HaShem AD-NAI: “Surely I will take the children of Israel from among the nations, wherever they have gone, and will gather them from every side and bring them into their own land; and I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one King shall be King over them all; they shall no longer be two nations, nor shall they ever be divided into two kingdoms again.” -Ezekiel 37:15-22
And look how they live: They shall not defile themselves anymore with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions; but I will deliver them from all their dwelling places in which they have sinned, and will cleanse them. Then they shall be My people, and I will be their G-d. “David My servant shall be King over them, and they shall all have One Shepherd; they shall also walk in My judgments and observe My statutes, and do them. Then they shall dwell in the land that I have given to Jacob My servant, where your fathers dwelt; and they shall dwell there, they, their children, and their children’s children, forever; and My servant David shall be their Prince forever. -Ezekiel 37:23-25
One nation, under One King, serving the One G-d, in perfect obedience to His Torah. Forever: The New Covenant of Jeremiah 31 – the one with Israel and Judah – the same two kingdoms joined into one Kingdom with “David” as their King. Indeed, Gentiles are grafted into this Kingdom, but it is nonetheless a Covenant made with Israel and Judah.
My Servant Mashiach [Messiah], a descendant of David, will reign over them and they will have one shepherd. –Ezekiel 37:24 Gutnick Edition Chumash
“Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them, and it shall be an everlasting covenant with them; I will establish them and multiply them, and I will set My sanctuary in their midst forevermore. My tabernacle also shall be with them; indeed I will be their G-d, and they shall be My people. The nations also will know that I, HaShem, sanctify Israel, when My sanctuary is in their midst forevermore.” -Ezekiel 37:26-28
Yeshua announce to His brothers that He is Messiah. ( “Vayigashu… ani Yeshua akhikhem…” ) [Come near to me, I am Yeshua, your brother].
It is the time when our Master, Yeshua the Messiah ( i.e VOICE OF MOST HIGH ), will reign over all the house of Israel and Judah as King and it will be the fulfillment of the promises of the New Covenant.
May it be soon, and in our days.
UNIVERSAL TORAH: VAYIGASH -By Rabbi Avraham Greenbaum
Torah Reading: VAYIGASH Gen. 44:18-47:27; Haftara: Ezekiel 37:15-2.
“AND JUDAH STEPPED FORWARD.”
The key to the dramatic encounter between Judah and Joseph with which our parshah of VAYIGASH begins is to be found in the Haftara our sages attached to this parshah: Ezekiel’s vision of the joining of the two sticks. One stick the prophet was to inscribe with the names of Judah and the Children of Israel his friends — the kingdom of Torah Law and spirituality under David. The other stick he was to inscribe “to Joseph Tree of Ephraim and all the House of Israel his friends” — secular, assimilated Israelite might: economic, political, military, involvement in the material world. The prophet was to join the two sticks and make them one, signifying that they will become —
“One nation in the earth in the mountains of Israel, and one king will be over all of them as King, and they will no longer be two nations and they will no longer be split into two kingdoms. And my servant David will be king over them and one shepherd will be for them all [King Mashiach]. And they will go in My laws and guard My statutes and do them. And they will dwell in the land that I have given to My servant Jacob in which your fathers dwelled, and they and their children and children’s children will dwell upon it forever, and David My servant will be Prince to them forever. And I will cut for them a Covenant of Peace, an eternal Covenant will be for them. And I will give them and multiply them and I will put My Holy Temple within them forever. And My Dwelling will be upon them and I will be G-d for them, and they will be My People. And the Nations will know that I am HaShem who sanctifies Israel that My Sanctuary should be among them forever ” (Ezekiel 37:28).
The encounter in our parshah between Judah and Joseph is the paradigm of this necessary joining between the two aspects of Israelite being in the world, spiritual and material. For its own existence, the Torah “kingdom” depends upon the successful material presence of Israel in the world, be it in the Land of Israel or in “Goshen”. (“Goshen” would include all historical and present-day centers of Jewish sojourn in exile and dispersal east or west.) For “if there is no flour [bread to eat], there is no Torah”. Likewise, material Israel cannot survive without true Torah leadership — Melech HaMashiach. Jacob saw this, which is why “he sent Judah ahead of him to Joseph to rule before him to Goshen” (Gen. 46:28). It is the Torah leader who must rule over Israel, and Torah leadership must direct Israeli worldly power to the nation’s prophetic mission of being worthy of building the Temple in the Land of Israel from which the Law will go forth to all the Nations.
* * *
THE POWER OF WORDS
Judah’s heart-rending appeal to Joseph (standing there before him as a hard-hearted Egyptian tyrant) is the prototype of the Tzaddik (which may be any one of us) facing MIDAS HADIN (the aspect of G-d’s harsh judgment) and using prayer to turn it into RACHAMIM (compassion). Judah appealed to Joseph’s heart and to a fundamental sense of FAIRNESS that exists everywhere in the world including among the Gentiles (see “Rabbi Nachman’s Wisdom” #78 for a profoundly insightful discussion of this subject.) At some point there is a universal loathing for blatant unfairness
This is because even the Seventy Nations are at root vitalized by a spark of G-dliness deriving from KETER, the “Crown” of G-d’s will, which gives life and sustenance to the side of evil, as represented in Egypt. For the duration of history, this vitalizing root is contained in the Seven “Crowns”, the seven Commandments of the Son’s of Noah, which come to rectify the Seventy Nations as exemplified in Egypt (Ham) under the rule of Joseph (Shem).
Judah’s appeal to Joseph is a heart-to-heart appeal, man to man. Judah is willing to sacrifice his entire life and submit himself to slavery in order to save his younger brother Benjamin. Judah is the true AREV (“guarantor”) for his brother – the ultimate in loving your fellow as yourself.
From the way we appeal to the heart of a fellow human, we are to learn how we should to appeal to G-d in prayer. This must be “face to face”, as to a friend, even all seems clothed in MIDAS HADIN, the power of strict judgment. From Judah’s appeal to Joseph we are to learn how in prayer we are to plead and offer to sacrifice our very selves in servitude to G-d, in order to turn G-d’s DIN, strict judgment, into RAHAMIM, mercy.
Judah’s eloquent appeal to Joseph’s sense of fairness can serve as an exemplar to all of us in the art of prayer and entreaty, particularly in times of stress and danger. Eloquence in prayer is a good trait for all of us to cultivate — it comes by speaking from heart to heart. We need to be bold and speak out our complaints and requests to G-d from our hearts.
* * *
“NOT YOU SENT ME HERE BUT G-D”
After revealing himself to his brothers, Joseph provides them with a peace-making way of re-perceiving the past, even where negative, as part of a divinely-prepared plan — in this case to draw the Children of Israel down into Egypt. “Not you sent me here but G-d” (Gen. 45:8) — “for sustenance G-d sent me before you” (ibid. v. 5).
In all circumstances, understanding that all the various humans who surround us are in reality agents of G-d, Who is behind and within all phenomena, is one of the main keys to understanding our personal situation in the world.
As expressed by the great early-20th century Polish Breslover Chassid, Rabbi Yitzhak Breiter (in his “Seven Pillars of Faith”):
“Other people are also free agents, yet everything they do is ultimately controlled by God. If someone insults you or in some way harms you, know that this has been sent by God as a way to cleanse your soul. If things go against you, be patient. When you accept everything as God’s will, this causes the veil of concealment to be removed, thus manifesting God’s control over all creation..
“..,.Everything we experience is actually a communication from God. This includes our inner thoughts and feelings. Even negative thoughts and feelings – heaviness, lack of enthusiasm, depression and the like – are from God. Everything you hear, see, or experience in life, whether from people you know or from complete strangers, is a call to you from God. Even unclear or contradictory messages are sent with a purpose: to give us choice and free will in order to test us. The way to sort out which messages we should follow and which we should ignore is by evaluating everything in the light of Torah teaching Pillars #4 and #6).
FORCED BY THE MOUTH OF THE WORD
“Forced by the WORD OF THE MOUTH of G-d — “ANOOS AL PI-HADIBUR” — is a phrase from the Haggadah explaining why Jacob and his sons went into exile. Historically, exile was forced on the Jews as a kind of “rape” of the Shechinah, the Jewish Soul, by the material world, making it necessary to go out to “slavery” in the “Egypt” of the Seventy Nations for sheer survival. Again and again in Jewish history, economic needs (“famine”) caused Jews to migrate.
G-d’s plan in sending Joseph down to Egypt to prepare for the subsequent Israelite slavery and ultimate redemption may be seen unfolding repeatedly in the later history of Jewish exiles. For example, the Jews who spread wide in Poland and what was once its empire, the very centers of Ashkenazic Jewry, (Ukraine, Belorussia, Lithuania, Galitzia, etc.) were originally enticed there in the 11th Century and thereafter from Germany by Polish kings (Pharaohs) who wanted to enrich themselves with industrious Jewish managers (Joseph). The Jews of Germany had themselves been enticed there in better days from France, the original “Ashkenaz”.
For centuries the Jews of the “Four Lands” of the Polish empire were practically an independent Torah kingdom within the kingdom, even after the dispersal of another Torah kingdom, the Jewry of “Sepharad” — Spain, remnants of whom reached Israel. For Polish Jewry, the tide changed from the times of the Chmielnitzki Massacres of 1648-9 and thereafter, when Jewish worldly influence and actual Torah practice among the Jews of Russia,Poland and its former empire declined to the point of near extinction under communism. Meanwhile the Jewry of Europe was rapidly assimilating. For generations from the 1800’s onwards, Jews were looking westwards, especially to America. The culminating points were the Pogroms, the Russian Revolution and the Holocaust, which annihilated European Jewry spiritually and physically. After the Second World War most of Sephardic and Oriental Jewry migrated to Israel or to the west. Thus the main world Jewish centers shifted to Israel and America, both of which contain an uneasy balance of “Judah” and “Joseph” Jews — Torah observant and secular.
Israel was built up by the returnees to the Land from the East and from the West and is today the key to ultimate Jewish survival and victory — Israel is LAND: it is THE Land. The holocaust appears to have been the “price” for the birth of the State of Israel, which today is confronted by an existential struggle for survival, under attack, directly or in disguise, by all of the Seventy Nations.
The key to Jewish survival today is the bond between “Israel” under the leadership of Judah — Torah, Melech HaMashiach — and “Joseph”, “Ephraim”, the main body of Jewry in Israel and throughout the world.
CONNECTION TO THE LAND
The concluding section of our parshah of VAYIGASH, recounts how in the years of famine in Egypt, Joseph “purchased” the Egyptians’ land, their livestock and their very bodies for Pharaoh (Genesis 13-27).
One point found in the commentators is of special note in UNIVERSAL TORAH, which focuses on aspects of Torah that apply to all humanity. It is that Joseph worked assiduously for the benefit of Pharaoh and did not seek to use his position as Viceroy for personal enrichment. He could have sent sacks of silver back to store for himself in Canaan, but he did not. He worked diligently for his employer and was an exemplar of service.
The “purchase” by Joseph of the land and the very bodies of the Egyptians for an annual tax of 20% — one fifth of all income — institutes fundamental principles of the modern state. Military power is controlled by the “king” or government, who is expected to protect the population and alleviate “famine”, providing everything necessary for general wellbeing (“health of the economy”).
One of the features of modern history has been great migrations of people of all nations from country to country and continent to continent. This has tended to separate the population from connection to the land in the form of land-ownership, while urbanization has separated over 50 per cent of the world’s population from direct connection with nature.
The only people on earth who have a continuous historical link with one and the same country going back thousands of years is the People of Israel and the Jews. Israel is the only country on earth that belongs to the Jews.
The Twenty Percent Tax Joseph instituted for Egypt alludes to the 20% of net income that a person should ideally separate for Tzedakah (just as Jacob said, ASOR (10%) A-ASRENAH (10%) “I will surely tithe” — Genesis 28:22, Maaser Rishon (“the first tithe”) and Maaser Sheni (“the second tithe”).
“And Zion will be redeemed through justice and her returnees through charity” (Isaiah 1:27)
Shabbat Shalom! – by Rabbi Avraham Yehoshua Greenbaum
We will see that the children of Israel return to Most High and Torah of Mashiach, And will hug in the Holy Land, and by obeying and listening the “VOICE of Most Ancient Holy One of Israel”, will bring offerings in a righteous way on the holy mountain and also bring the Ark of the covenant with pure heart in the right place ( i.e In Har HaBayit, on the foundation Stone) .
We will Welcome the son of David on Mount Zion, Jerusalem.
[ Ha Khadosh Baruch Hu – Baruch HaBa B’Shem Adonai ] – Gaddi, President, BetYisrael International.
Gaddi – President
A Servant of Most Ancient Holy one of Israel and Disciple of Yeshua HaMashiach
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