Vayishlach | וישלח | “He sent ” – I Send you My Messengers and Carry a Message of Peace.
–In order to build his House, Jacob had to struggle with two major adversaries: Esau and Laban. Sages said: “Without G-d’s help, it would impossible to conquer the evil inclination”
-As being as “kind as a dove” as well as “Wise as a Serpent.”
The Eighth reading from the book of Genesis is named Vayishlach (וישלח), which means “and he sent.” “Then Jacob sent messengers before him to his brother Esau in the land of Seir, the country of Edom” –(Genesis 32:3-4 ). Jacob wants to make Peace with Esau after running away from him and being with Laban for many years.
- Jacob prepares to meet Esau and wrestles with a Man, who changes Jacob’s name to Israel. – Genesis 32:4-33
- Jacob and Esau meet but each going his separate way. – Genesis 33:1-17
- Dinah is raped by Shechem, the son of Hamor the Hivite, who was chief of the country. Jacob’s sons Simeon and Levi take revenge by murdering all the males of Shechem. – Genesis 34:1-31
- Rachel dies giving birth to Benjamin and is buried in Ephrah, which is present-day Bethlehem. – Genesis 35:16-21
- Isaac dies and is buried in Hebron. – Genesis 35:22-3
In this portion Few Points need to be noted:
- Esau is contesting the birthright issue
- Esau is coming to kill Jacob
- Jacob is in fear and prays to G-d for help.
- Jacob comes out with a Gift, a Prayer, and with War.
Jacob now sent messengers ahead of him to his brother Esau in the land of Seir, in the countryside of Edom. – Genesis 32:4
We are told that Jacob sent “messengers” ahead to meet his brother Esau. Some of the sages interpret this as “divine messengers” – that being angels.
Jacob’s instructions for his messengers show him as being as “kind as a dove” as well as “wise as a serpent.”
Yeshua Words: Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves – Matthew 10 : 16
AND JACOB SENT MESSENGERS (lit. angels), ETC. R. Judah discoursed on the text: For he will give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways (Psalms XCI, 11). ‘According to the companions,’ he said, ‘the moment a child is born into the world, the evil prompter straightway attaches himself to him, and thenceforth brings accusations against him, as it says, “sin coucheth at the door” (Genesis IV, 7), the term “sin” being a designation of the evil prompter, who was also called sin by King David in the verse: “and my sin is ever before me” (Psalms LI, 5). He is so called because he makes man every day to sin before his Master, never leaving him from the day of his birth till the end of his life. But the good prompter first comes to man only on the day that he begins to purify himself, to wit, when he reaches the age of thirteen years. From that time the youth finds himself attended by two companions, one on his right and the other on his left, the former being the good prompter, the latter the evil prompter. These are two veritable angels appointed to keep man company continually. Now when a man tries to be virtuous, the evil prompter bows to him, the right gains dominion over the left, and the two together join hands to guard the man in all his ways; hence it is written: “For he will give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways.“‘
R. Eleazar applied this verse to Jacob when G-d assigned to him companies of angels as an escort because he came with the full number of tribes, forming with them a godly company. Hence it says: “And Jacob went on his way, and the angels of G-d met him” (Gen. XXXII, 2). Here, therefore, when he was delivered from the hands of Laban and dissociated himself from him, the Shekinah joined him, and sacred camps came to encircle him, so that [166a] “Jacob said when he saw them, etc.” (Ibid. 3). It was from these angels that he sent a mission to Esau, as it says: “And Jacob sent angels” (mal’akhim).‘ R. Isaac said: ‘Why, in one place in the Psalms does it say “The angel of the Lord encampeth round about them that fear him and delivereth them” (Psalms XXXIV, 8), in the singular, and in another place, “For he will give his angels charge over thee” (Ibid. XCI, II), in the plural? The reason is that the term “angels” is a reference to angels proper, whereas in the verse: “The angel of the Lord encampeth”, the reference is to the Shekinah, as in the verse: “And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush” (Ex. III, 2). Thus “the angel of the Lord encampeth round about those who fear him” to deliver them; and when the Shekinah abides within a man. ever so many holy legions rally round him. David uttered this verse when he escaped from Achish the king of Gath, because the Shekinah encompassed him and delivered him from Achish and his people, and all those who assailed him. It is written in the same connection: “And he feigned himself mad (vayitholel) in their hands” (I Sam. XXI. 14). The term vayitholel here, in place of the more usual vayishtagea’, contains an allusion to the kindred term used formerly by David when he said: “For I was envious of the madmen (holelim)” (Ps. LXXIII, 3). G-d thus said in effect to David: “As thou livest, since thou enviest madmen, thou thyself wilt yet be driven to play the madman”; and so it came to pass when he was brought before Achish and his life was in danger; he then “feigned himself mad (vayitholel) in their hand”, that is, he behaved like one of those madmen (holelim) whom he had once envied; and only then did the Shekinah come to his rescue. How, it may be asked, could this be, seeing that the Shekinah abides only in her own heritage, the Holy Land? The answer is that from there only she bestows blessings, but for purposes of protection she is to be found elsewhere also. So here, when Jacob departed from Laban, all the holy legions surrounded him, so that he was not left by himself.‘
R. Hizkiah asked: ‘If that was so, how came Jacob, as stated later, to be “left alone” (Gen. XXXII, 25)?’ Said R. Judah in reply: ‘Because he exposed himself deliberately to danger, and therefore the angels deserted him. It was to this that he alluded when he said: “I am not worthy of all the mercies and of all the truth which thou hast shown unto thy servant” (Ibid. II).’ R. Isaac said that the reason why they departed was to leave him alone with the chieftain of Esau, who came down to him with divine permission; and they meanwhile went off to chant the hymns for which the hour was then due and to sing the praises of the Holy One, blessed be He, and afterwards they returned to Jacob. “Now I am become two camps”: to wit, the camp of the Shekinah and his own household, so that he was complete on all sides, having his portion both with the white and with the red. R. Eleazar said: ‘The sages have stated that on that night and at that hour the power of Esau was in the ascendant, and therefore Jacob was left alone, or, from another aspect, the sun was left alone, the light of the moon having been obscured. Nevertheless, the guardianship of Providence did not leave him entirely, so that his antagonist prevailed not against him, as it says: “And when he saw that he prevailed not against him … “. He looked to Jacob’s right, and there his gaze met Abraham; he turned to his left, and there he saw Isaac; he looked at Jacob’s body, and he saw that it was a fusion of the two sides, and so he touched the hollow of his thigh, which is a pillar adjoining the body but is outside the body. In this way, then, the angel encompassed Jacob on all sides to deliver him; and when the Shekinah came down to abide with him, there joined him multitudinous hosts and legions; and it was of those angels that he sent a party to Esau.
War in Spiritual Realm:
It is a fundamental principle of spiritual reality, that when “battles” are fought, there is an engagement in the spiritual realm before the physical fight takes place. The wrestling subject is in reality is a the defeat of Esau in the spiritual realm prior to that in the physical. The result in the physical realm is that when Esau meets Jacob, he does try to kill him, but surprises him by greeting him warmly. The battle had already been decided in the spiritual realm.
The Zohar explains that prior to arriving in Israel, Jacob realized Esau was not his enemy. The enemy was his own dark side. He wrestled with his dark angels, and in that process, he created positive angels that went ahead and paved the path for peace. He continues to confront himself when he bows before Esau. His lesson to us is that when we realize the enemy is always within, and when we are willing to do whatever it takes to defeat our own darkness, we can create positive angels (messengers) that can warm up the coldest of hearts.
And there came war in the heaven; Michael and his messengers did war against the dragon, and the dragon did war, and his messengers,… – Revelation 12 : 7
note: Samael accuses Israel and Michael demands the punishment of Edom.
Midrash Rabbah – Exodus XVIII:5 – To what may Michael and Samael be compared? To an intercessor and an accuser before a tribunal: each speaks in turn, and when each has finished the intercessor sees that he has triumphed, and he begins to praise the judge that he may issue his verdict; and when the accuser wishes to add anything, the intercessor says to him: ‘You remain quiet and let us hear the judge.’ So also do Michael and Samael both stand before the Divine Presence; Satan accuses, while Michael points out Israel’s virtues, and when Satan wishes to speak again, Michael silences him, because, as it says: I will hear what G-d the Lord will speak; for He will speak peace unto His people (Psalms LXXXV, 9).
Midrash Rabbah – Ruth Prologue I – AND IT CAME TO PASS, IN THE DAYS THAT THE JUDGES JUDGED (I, 1). R. Johanan introduced his exposition with the verse Hear, O My people, and I will speak; O Israel, and I will testify against thee (Ps. L, 7). R. Johanan said: Evidence is given only in the hearing [of the defendant]. R. Judan b. R. Simon said: In the past, Israel had a name like all the nations, [for instance] And Sabta, and Raamah, and Sabteca (Gen. X, 7); henceforth they are called solely ‘My people’, thus: ’Hear, O My people, and I will speak’: Whence have ye merited to be called ’ My people’ ? From the time of ‘ and I will speak’, from that which ye uttered before Me at Sinai and said, All that the Lord hath spoken will we do, and hearken (Ex. XXIV, 7). R. Johanan said ’ Hear, O My people ‘, to that [which was said] in the past; ‘and I will speak’ in the future; ‘Hear, O My people’ in this world; ’and I will speak’ in the World to Come, in order that I may have a retort to the princes of the nations of the world, who are destined to act as their prosecutors before Me, and say ‘Lord of the Universe, they have served idols and we have served idols; they have been guilty of immorality and we have been guilty of immorality; they have shed blood and we have shed blood. Why do they go into the Garden of Eden while we descend to Gehenna? ‘ In that moment the defender of Israel keeps silence. That is the meaning of the verse And at that time shall Michael stand up (Dan. XII, 1). Do they then as a rule sit in Heaven? Did not R. Hanina say, there is no sitting in Heaven, as it is written I came near unto one of ka’amaya (ib. VII, 16), the meaning of this word ‘ ka’amaya ‘ being that stood by, as it is written, Above him stood the seraphim (Isa. VI, 2), and it s also written And all the host of heaven standing on His right hand and on His left (II Chron. XVIII, 18)? And yet the verse says ‘shall [Michael] stand up’!.What then is the meaning here of ’stand up’? ‘Stand silent,’ as it is said, And shall I wait because they speak not, because they stand still, and answer no more? (Job XXXII, 16). And the Holy One, blessed be He, says to him: ‘ Dost thou stand silent and hast no defence to offer for My people? By thy life, I will speak righteousness and save My people! ‘ With what righteousness? R. Eleazar and R. Johanan:-one says: The righteousness which ye wrought for My word in that ye accepted My Torah, for had ye not accepted My Torah, I should have caused the world to revert to void and desolation. For R. Huna said in the name of R. Aha: When the earth and all the inhabitants thereof are dissolved (Ps. LXXV, 4) means that the world would long have gone into dissolution had not Israel stood before Mount Sinai. Who then set the world firmly upon its foundation? I myself establish the pillars of it (ib.). By the merit of ‘I’: I have established its pillars for ever. The other Rabbi says: By the righteousness which ye wrought unto yourselves in that ye accepted my Torah; for were it not for this, I should have caused thee to disappear from the nations.
G-d shall fight for you, and you shall hold your peace – Exodus 14:14
So take up every piece of war equipment G-d provides; so that when the evil day comes, you will be able to resist; and when the battle is won, you will still be standing. Therefore, stand! Have the belt of truth buckled around your waist, put on righteousness for a breastplate, and wear on your feet the readiness that comes from the Good News of shalom. Always carry the shield of trust, with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the Evil One. And take the helmet of deliverance;along with the sword given by the Spirit, that is, the Word of G-d; as you pray at all times, with all kinds of prayers and requests, in the Spirit, vigilantly and persistently, for all G-d’s people. – Ephesians 6:13-18
In order to build his House, Jacob had to struggle with two major adversaries: Esau and Laban. Esau embodies the threat to the Holy House from the forces of excess and evil in the material world. The focus is on Jacob’s encounter with Laban, whose threat to the Holy House is from the forces of excess in the spiritual worlds. Thus while Esau is portrayed as a HUNTER-WARRIOR, Laban is portrayed as a PRIEST –(Rashi on Gen. 24:21, Genesis 31:30 ).
FOUR HUNDRED MEN:
Then the messengers returned to Jacob, saying, “We came to your brother Esau, and he also is coming to meet you, and four hundred men are with him.” -Genesis 32:6
Why did Esau have 400 men accompanying him andWhat does this number indicate?
However Esau was not impressed by the words of his brother, and he decided to attack him by using his forces of impurity (Zohar III:163b) and the power of 400 years of exile. With their help, Esau thought to conquer Jacob. This is what the angels reported to Jacob: “We came to your brother, to Esau. Moreover, he is heading toward you, and four hundred men are with him” – Genesis 32:7.
The meaning of Jacob’s words in light of the fact that Esau came with 400 men to attack him: The number 400 symbolizes exile, as it is written: “And He said to Abraham, ‘Know with certainty that your offspring shall be aliens in a land not their own – and they will serve them, and they will oppress them – 400 years ” . Adonai said to Avram, “Know this for certain: your descendants will be foreigners in a land that is not theirs. They will be slaves and held in oppression there four hundred years. –Genesis 15:13 .
The Sages have said, “The one who studies Torah is considered as if he presented a sacrifice” (Menachot 110a), which means that studying the laws relating to a certain Torah commandment is considered as if one had actually carried out that commandment. Therefore Jacob, who studied all the laws of the Torah, made Esau understand that this study would surely save him from his attacks. “Take words with you and return to the L-RD” (Hosea 14:3), which Rash explains as meaning: “Please accept the words that we recite as a replacement for the sacrifices that we should have offered to You.”
Yaakov and Esav – Secret of Redemption
The Teachings of Hassidut speaks about the meeting between Yaaqov and Esav is about the correcting the worlds and the secret of redemption.
This is the purpose of the meeting; opposing Yaakov and Esav as stated: “And the brothers were facing each other” (Exodus 37:9) –this is – when doing the Will of the Creator (cf. Baba Bathra 99a). And who are these brothers? The sentence: “the brothers were facing each other” in Gematria equals 558 which in Hebrew is the sum of the words: Esav + Yakov.
The Eight kings of Edom – who emerged from Esav (Genesis 36:31) represent the volatile forces of Chaos (the 7 emotive Sefirot in the ‘World of Chaos’ plus the eighth one; Daat, that corresponds to the door to the world of Correction – Esav in ‘the tree of the Sefirot’ belongs to Isaac’s column [Amud haGevurah] and it represents ‘Unrectified Strength [Gevurah].
LABAN: “I have sojourned with Laban.”
And he commanded them, saying, “Speak thus to my lord Esau, ‘Thus your servant Jacob says: “I have dwelt with Laban and stayed there until now. I have oxen, donkeys, flocks, and male and female servants; and I have sent to tell my lord, that I may find favor in your sight.”‘” -Genesis 32:4-5
On the other hand, Yaakov said to his brother: “with Lavan I have stayed” (I’ m Lavan Garti) (Genesis 32:5 ). The Word: ‘Garti’ (I have stayed) has the same value, and in deed the same letters with the word: Taryag = 613.
Alluding to the 613 commands of the Torah (cf. Rashi). Yaakov was entrusted with the 613 commandments of the Torah; from Yaakov came the people of Israel, and to Israel was given the Torah through which the world is rectified (the World of Correction).
I sojourned with Laban and I dominated everything [bakol mikol kol]. I studied Torah and observed all its laws. Instead of falling, I elevated myself to the point that I merited having angels serve me (Bereshith Rabba 75:4), and G-d’s word was revealed to me.
Rabbi Aba said, It is written that Jacob was “a plain man, dwelling in tents” (Beresheet 25:27). He was called “a plain man,” because his abode was in two supernal temples, Binah and Malchut, the secret of the tent of Rachel and the tent of Leah. He reconciles both sides, which meant that hebalanced and perfected the Right and Reft Columns. Do not conclude from the verse, “I have sojourned with Laban,” that he was contaminated by the divination of Laban. But in light of Rabbi Yehuda’s observation that one seeks out one’s own kind, according to the question of Rabbi Yitzchak, the explanation for, “I have sojourned with Laban,” is that he was wholeheartedly thankful for the grace and truth shown him by the Holy One, blessed be He. For everybody knows that although no one can be saved from Laban’s accusations, the Holy One, blessed be He, rescued me from his hands when Laban wanted to destroy me. This is what he meant by the verse, “I have sojourned with Laban.” Furthermore, he said all this so that Esau would not envy him his blessings, but rather think that they were not fulfilled in him. Thus, Esau would not harbor any hate for him as Rabbi Yosi explained. Of this, the scripture says, “for the ways of Hashem are right” (Hoshea 14:10), and, “You shall be perfect with Hashem your Elohim” (Devarim 18:13).
Zohar writings: Come and behold, it is written of Bilaam, “And Elohim came to Bilaam at night” (Bemidbar 22:20). Of Laban, the verse says, “And Elohim came to Laban the Arammian in a dream by night, and said to him, Take heed that you speak not to Jacob…” (Beresheet 31:24). This shows us that Laban was as great as Bilaam. He asks, Why is it written, “that you speak not,” rather than ‘that you harm not?’ He answers, Laban did not chase Jacob with an army of men to wage war against him, for the power of Jacob and his sons is greater than that of Laban. But he chased him to kill him with his mouth and destroy everything, as it is written, “An Arammian wanted to destroy my father.” This is why it says, “that you speak not,” and not, ‘that you harm not’. It is also written, “It is in the power of my hand to do.” How did he know he had the power? From that which “Elohim of your father spoke to me last night”
This is the testimony that the Holy One, blessed be He, commanded to pronounce, as it is written, “And you shall speak and say before Hashem your Elohim, an Arammian wanted to destroy my father.” “And you shall speak” is similar to the verses, “You shall not bear false witness” –Shemot 20:13.
This is the meaning of what Bilaam, Laban’s grandson, said, “Surely there is no enchantment in Jacob, nor divination in Yisrael” – Numbers 23:23.
Laban used enchantment against Jacob, but neither succeeded. This is the meaning of the verse, “Surely there is no enchantment in Jacob, nor divination in Yisrael.” The words, “there is no enchantment in Jacob,” refer to the days of Laban, and “divination in Yisrael” refers to the latter days of Bilaam.
Nevertheless, I have a few things against you: you have some people who hold to the teaching of Bil‘am, who taught Balak to set a trap for the people of Isra’el, so that they would eat food that had been sacrificed to idols and commit sexual sin.-Revelation 2:14
Laban used ten kinds of divination and enchantments from the illumination of the lower crowns, but could not prevail against Jacob. In connection with this, it is written, “and you have changed my wages ten times” (Beresheet 31:41).
The ten kinds of sorcery and divination of the lower crowns of the Klipot. Laban employed all of these against him. These ten kinds are, “a diviner, that uses divinations, a soothsayer, or an enchanter, or a witch, or a charmer, or a medium, or a wizard, or a necromancer” -Devarim 18:10-11.
Yaaqov sent messengers to Esav, informing him of his return. Esav came to meet Yaaqov, along with 400 men. Yaacov divided his people into two camps, so that should Eisav attack, at least one camp would survive. And During the night Yaaqov wrestled with an angel, who could not defeat him, so he touched Yaaqov on the thigh, dislocating his hip. At dawn, the angel blessed Yaaqov, and changed his name to Israel. Yaaqov met with Esav in reconciliation. Esav went to Seir.
“A man wrestled with him” :
Jacob wrestled with the angel through the night. He would not let the angel go. Jacob said to the angel, “I will not let you go unless you bless me” -Genesis 32:26
Hosea refers to this incident this way: He took his brother by the heel in the womb, and in his strength he struggled with G-d. Yes, he struggled with the Angel and prevailed; he wept, and sought favor from Him. He found Him in Bethel, and there He spoke to us – that is, HaShem G-d of hosts. HaShem is His memorable name. –Hosea 12:3-5
So this angel, Samael, comes to Yaakov as the driver of his ‘Evil Inclination’, for it’s written: “Yaakov was left alone, and there wrestled a man with him” (Genesis 32:24). Our sages say that “the Evil Inclination is called a Man” (Sukka 52b). The three metaphorical terms by which the “Evil Inclination” is called gradually by the way it grows are: “traveller” (heleikh), “Guest” (oreyakh) and “Man” (Ish) (cf. II S 12:4), which together in Gematria equal “Evil Inclination” (Yetzer haRa).
It becomes a personal (inner) struggle with Esav’s guardian angel, who is Samael, who leads Yaakov’s “Evil Inclination”. But Yaakov understands that even the Satan does G-d’s will. Yaakov said to Esav: ‘I have seen your face, as one who sees the face of G-d’ (Genesis 33:10). Everything is under G-d’s control, for it was G-d who started the conversation with Satan about Yov ( Job1:8), and it was G-d who gave him permission to tempt Yov by all means ( Job 1:12). So Yaakov saw the face of G-d in Esav and his angel. That’s the secret of “Peniel” (face of the Mighty) -(Genesis 32:30).
Yaakov was able to prevail over the Evil Inclination and bring a correction. For it’s written that “a man wrestled with him”; this is Samael = the Evil Inclination. But later it is said: “I will not let you go until you bless me” – and this is G-d’s manifestation through this angel; therefore, by Prayer, Yaakov released the Holiness of what seemed to be evil, and turned it into good; ie. once the angel’s mission was accomplished, the angel was seen as G-d’s manifestation; Penuel – the face of the Mighty (cf. Targum Neofiti) – who is Uriel (G-d’s Light) – as the morning was rising and the night leaving. In Hebrew the word “face” also means “Presence”. Yaakov saw God in the Divine Presence (the Shekhina). So Yzakov’s struggle became a conversation with the Prince of the Presence (Shar haPanim)- as it’s written: “the Angel of His face saved them” (Isaiah 63:9).
Therefore this angel is called both: Samael (the guardian angel of Esav), and Israel (cf. Pirkei D’Rabbi Eliezer 37).
This is the secret of: “You have striven with Elohim (Divine beings) and with men, and have prevailed” (Genesis 32:29). Because of Samael it is said: “he [the man] saw that he could not overpower him [Yaakov]” ( Genesis 32:26), and of Uriel it is said: “the sun rose as he passed over Penuel” ( Genesis 32:32).
The Angel that fought that night with Yaakov when he was preparing himself to meet Esav is said to be Esav’s guardian angel (Zohar I:66a, 146a, 170a; Tanhuma Vayishlakh 8, Bereshit Rabbah 77:3) – some will deduce it from the verse: “he took his brother by the heel and… prevailed over the angel” (Hosea 12:4) – this is Samael, who is Satan and the Inclination to evil (Baba Bathra 16a), who dominates night (cf. Zohar 1:170b).
…until the breaking of the day…” is the time when his power goes away and disappears, as will occur in the future. For the exile resembles the night; namely, it is dark, a time when the dust rules over Israel, and the people are thrown to the earth until light appears and daylight shines. Then Israel will have power and will be given the Kingdom, for they will be high saints, as it is written, “And the kingdom and dominion, and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven, shall be given to the people of the holy ones of the most High, whose kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and all dominions shall serve and obey Him” –Daniel 7:27.
Heavenly Israel and Earthly Israel:
The angel blessed Jacob by changing his name to Israel. When Jacob returns to Bethel, the LORD tells him, “‘Your name is Jacob; you shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel shall be your name.’ Thus He called him Israel” -Genesis 35:10
Zohar Breishit 144B :Translated and annotated by Rahmiel-Hayyim Drizin from the Zohar selection in Hok L’Yisrael : “And he said” [‘Your name shall no more be called Jacob, but Israel] has the same meaning as “and He said, If you will diligently hearken to the voice of the L-rd your G-d”. (Exodus. 15:26) Here too “And he said” means [the Shechinah said]: “Your name shall be called no more Jacob, but Israel.” Then Jacob was crowned by his level by which he will include all the forefathers [for Jacob stood for tiferet, which is the middle line that includes chesed and also harmonizes the chesed of Abraham with the gevura of Isaac; and after Sam-kel (the angel of Esau) saw that Jacob was crowned with this supernal level] it is written, “And he blessed him there”. (Genesis 32:30) It means that he acknowledged all the blessings with which his father blessed him.
Isaiah speaks of one “called from the womb” whose mouth is like a “sharp sword.” This person can be described as a heavenly Tzaddik/Righteous one ( i.e Yeshua Our Messiah) and was “hidden in the shadow of G-d’s hand” and in His “quiver.” This person is also called “Israel,” in whom G-d will be glorified, yet this person is also the one who returns Jacob (the nation of Israel) to G-d, as well as bringing salvation to the gentiles. This “Israel” is the Supernal Israel, which again is associated with the sephirah of Tipheret ( beauty ).
He said, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Isra’el.” -Matthew 15:24
Malbim Declared:…….. on the words “I will gather them that are far from the appointed season”…….They are from B’nai Yisrael but they were raped ( forced) for their faith.. until now they carried the shame although they were from Israel even after they converted to the foreign worship… now I will take their shame that they have carried.
Then said the Jews among themselves, Whither will he go, that we shall not find him? will he go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles? – John 7 : 35
And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of G-d that were scattered abroad. – John 11:52
Therefore, brothers whom G-d has set apart, who share in the call from heaven, think carefully about Yeshua, whom we acknowledge publicly as G-d’s emissary and as cohen gadol. ( i.e heavenly work in above Mishkyan…. ) – Hebrews 3: 1
Supernal Israel / Heavenly Israel:
“All the life of this world that they inherit is derived from the World-to-come, because that is life both above and below, and the place where the “treasured wine” commences, and from which life and holiness issue. And Israel use wine on account of the wine of another Israel, for the supernal Israel derives life therefrom, and therefore they bless the Holy One with wine. Hence, when the idolater, who is unclean and defiles anyone who associates with him, touches the wine of Israel it becomes unclean and is forbidden; all the more the wine which he himself makes. All the practices of Israel are on the supernal pattern, and especially their offering of wine, which holds a very high rank, like the “treasured wine”. Hence Israel drink the wine of Israel which has been made in holiness, as is fitting, just as the Israel above drinks of that holy wine, and they do not drink wine which has been made in defilement and from the side of defilement, for the spirit of uncleanness rests on it, and if one drinks it his spirit is defiled and he is not of the side of Israel and has no share in the World-to-come, which is the “treasured wine.” -Zohar, Vayikra 40a
The man in charge tasted the water; it had now turned into wine! He did not know where it had come from, but the servants who had drawn the water knew. So he called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone else serves the good wine first and the poorer wine after people have drunk freely. But you have kept the good wine until now!” -John 2:9-10
Soncino Zohar, Shemoth, Section 2, Page 79b – R. Jesse was deeply impressed by these words and said: ‘Now I see that this is indeed so. And I have also heard it on another occasion from the mouth of the Master. But what is the meaning of the words, “And what is his son’s name?” ‘ R. Simeon replied: ‘The inner meaning of this I myself have taught my son, R. Eleazar.’ ‘I pray thee, tell it to me, for I did ask thee concerning it in a dream, but when I awoke I had forgotten thine answer.’ ‘And now, when I tell thee, wilt thou remember it?’ ‘I surely will,’ replied R. Jesse, ‘I always remember what my Mastor tells me.’ Said R. Simeon: ‘The words must be understood in the light of the expression, “My first-born son Israel” (Ex. IV, 22), and “Israel, in whom I am glorified” (Isa. XLIX, 3). “Israel” here refers to the supernal world, and it is this which is called “son”. Whereupon R. Jesse replied: ‘With all due respect to the Master, this is a secret which I already know.’ But yet again he forgot it. He was much perturbed. But when he went into his house and lay down to sleep, he saw in his dream an haggadic book, wherein it was written: “Wisdom (Hokmah) and glory (Tifereth) in His sanctuary.” When he awoke, he straightway went to R. Simeon, kissed his hand, and said: ‘This night I saw in my dream an haggadic book wherein were written the words: “Wisdom and glory in His sanctuary”, “Wisdom” above, “Glory” below, and “in His sanctuary” at the side. This I saw in a dream, and I found it on my lips when I awoke.’ Said R. Simeon to him: ‘Until this time thou wast too young to join the company of the “reapers of the field”, but now everything has been shown unto thee! Thus the meaning is: Wisdom (Hokmah) is His Name and Glory (Tifereth) the name of His son.’
‘How many thousands, how many myriads, of celestial cohorts surround the Holy One and follow in His train! Princes of supernal countenances are there, and beings full of eyes; lords of the sharp weapons, lords of the piercing cry, lords of the heralding trumpet, lords of mercy, lords of judgment; and above them the Lord has appointed the Matrona to minister before Him in the Palace. She for her own bodyguard has armed hosts of sixty different degrees. Holding their swords, they stand around Her. They come and go, entering and departing again on the errands of their Master. Each with his six wings outspread they circle the world in swift and silent flight. Before each of them coals of fire burn. Their garments are woven of flames from a bright and burning fire. A sharp flaming sword also is at the shoulder of each to guard Her. Concerning these swords it is written: “The flaming sword which turned every way to keep the way of the tree of life” (Genesis 3:23). Now, what is “the way of the Tree of Life”? This is the great Matrona who is the way to the great and mighty Tree of Life. Concerning this it is written: “Behold the bed which is Solomon’s; the three score valiant men are about it, of the valiant of Israel” (Song of Solomon 3:7), namely, the Supernal Israel. “They all hold swords” (Ibid. 8), and when the Matrona moves they all move with her, as it is written: “and the angel of God, which went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them” (Exodus 14:19). Is, then, the Shekinah called “the angel of the Lord”? Assuredly! -Zohar, Shemoth 50b,52a
And as many as order their lives by this rule, shalom upon them and mercy, and upon the Isra’el of G-d -Galatians 6:16
Esav and Samael :
And he kissed him -Genesis 33:4 : The dots in the Hebrew text over the word: “Kissed him” – “Yishakehu”, imply a slightly different pronunciation with a different meaning: “Yishakhehu” – “he bit him” (cf. Zohar I:171b). As in the bite of a snake.
Samael is the Angel who rode the Serpent who tempted Eve. Samael is the Snake; the Satan. Samael is constantly at war and enmity with the woman’s seed (Genesis 3:15). Esav is the father of Amalek (Genesis 36:12), of whom it is said: “HaShem is at war with Amalek from generation to generation” (Exodus 17:16). Amalek is the archenemy of Israel, and represents the seed of the Snake at war with the seed of the woman.
“In the future, when G-d uproots the Kingdom of Edom, he will lower Samael first. It is thus written (Isaiah 24:21): ‘G-d will punish the host of the heights of high’” (cf. Bahir 200). Because “HaShem will punish the host of the high heaven on high, and the kings of the earth upon the earth” (Isaiah 24:21) (cf. Saare Orah 2:9 p. 99).
Until I come to my lord, to Seir – Genesis 33:14.
‘Until I come to my lord, to Seir’. In other words: I shall suffer your exile and subjugation until my time to rule over the mount of Esav is come. As it is written: “And liberators shall ascend upon Mount Tzion to judge the mountain of Esav; and the kingdom shall be Hashem’s” –Ovadiah 1:21.
Esav made his home in mount Seir – Genesis 36:8; Joshua 24:4.
Yaakov tells Esav he will meet him in Mount Seir. But “there is no record that our father Yaakov went to Seir to see his brother. Rather, Yaakov will visit Esav in the future” (cf. Yerusalmi Avodah Zara 40:3), in the Days of the Messiah, “to judge the Mount of Esav” (which is Seir – שעיר, ie. the demon; cf. Ovadiah 1:21), and when the reconciliation between Israel and Edom will be complete (cf. Rashi; Dvarim Rabbah 234:4).
“Let my lord pass on ahead of his servant” ie. Let him rule first this world. – “while I proceed slowly” – meaning: I reserve myself for the End of Days; when I’ll join you to rule over mount Seir (cf. Zohar I:172a).
The Pig (Esav) will return to Israel : Esav (Edom = Rome) is compared to a Pig in Jewish literature (cf. Vayikra Rabbah 13:5; Kohelet Rabbah 1:9) . The Pig is the paradigm of what is not clean. As it’s taught: “as a ring of gold in a swine’s snout, so is a fair woman that turns aside from discretion” (Prov 11:22). The pig has a portion of goodness and a portion of uncleanness, as it’s written: “for it splits its hoof [like kosher animals] but does not chew the cud [like unclean animals]” (Leviticus 11:4-7).
In the book of “New Testament” : we find a legion of demons enter in a legion of swine (being “legion” a word to refer Roman soldiers) : Yeshua asked him, “What is your name?” “Legion,” he said, because many demons had entered him. They begged Yeshua not to order them to go off into the Bottomless Pit. Now there was a herd of many pigs, feeding on the hill; and the demons begged him to let them go into these. So he gave them permission. –-Luke 8:30-32
The Midrash says: “Why is [the Pig’s] name Hazir? Because the Blessed Holy One will cause it to Return (l’haKhaziro) to Israel”. Why is called Hazir? Because in the future it will return (lakhzir) (cf. Yehudah Hayon, Otzarot haYamim I:12).
“Don’t give to dogs what is holy, and don’t throw your pearls to the pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, then turn and attack you. -Matthew 7:6
Talmud: Babylonian Talmud, Ket. 111a – R. Levi said: “G-d made Israel swear that they should not reveal the [Messianic] end, and should not reveal the secrets of [of the Torah] to the idolators.“
“Let’s journey, and let’s go and I’ll go before you” -Genesis 33:12
So he said first: Let’s journey, let’s go – this is, together. And then: I will go – this is, ‘you must follow me’. This impulsive behaviour of Esav keeps a secret. Let’s go together to conquer mount Seir and to bring the Messianic era.
“Two are better than one” (Ecless 4:9), in Gematria equals: “Seir”.
But he hurried and said: ‘I’ll go first’. To what Yaakov answered: You go first… “I’ll go slowly at the pace of the cattle (melakha) which is before me and the children”.
What is Melakha? Literally: Work. “The Work which is in front of me”. And the “children”, who in a mystery are the Keruvim that keep the Torah. Rabbi Abbahu interprets the etymology of Keruvim as coming from the word: ke-ravya (like a child) (cf. Sukkah 5b).
We must go together to conquer mount Seir ( i. e which means destroy Samael and bring the Messianic era), but I, Esav conquer it first. For certainly the “New Testament” brings all the gentile nations to know G-d and to obey the Ethical principles of G-d’s Word (Mitzvot shel Bnei Noah; cf. Yakov Emden – Seder Olam Rabbah vezuta). However, as Esav is alone in this task, meaning, Yaakov didn’t join him, Messiah ben Yosef dies, as it’s written that they will mourn for the pierced one – who is Messiah ben Yosef (cf. Sukka 52a; Zech 12:10).
Yaakov , is to follow and judge the mount of Esav by making peace with Esav and bringing the portion that is left in the puzzle: Torah, the proper vessels in which the Light is to be kept. For certainly the “New Covenant” is made with Israel, with Judah (Jeremiah 31:31) and fulfilled in the Messianic era, when the knowledge of G-d will cover the whole Earth (Jeremiah 31:34; Is 11:9). So this brings the King Messiah.
As it’s written: “Behold how good and pleasant for brothers [ie. Esav and Yakov], to dwell together in Unity” -(Psalms 133:1).
UNIVERSAL TORAH: VAYISHLACH – By Rabbi Avraham Greenbaum
Torah reading: Gen. 32.4-36.43. Haftara: Obadiah 1.1-21 (Optional substitution: Hosea 11.7-12.12).
THE ENCOUNTER WITH ESAU:
At the end of the previous parshah, VAYEITZEI, we saw Jacob at MOUNT Gil’ad in his final encounter with Laban, who represents the evil husk in its spiritual manifestation, fake CHESSED-kindness. At Mount Gil’ad, Jacob made a “treaty” with Laban demarcating the boundaries which they and their descendants were to observe: these are the boundaries that neither good nor evil may overstep in the unfolding drama of human history. In prevailing over Laban, Jacob demonstrated that he had made a complete acquisition of Abraham’s quality of CHESSED. As discussed in connection with previous parshahs, it was Abraham who went to the MOUNTAIN, and thus Jacob’s “treaty” with Laban was struck at MOUNT Gil’ad.
In the present parshah, VAYISHLACH, we see Jacob struggling with the evil husk in its material manifestation, the “fallen” GEVUROS, worldly power and strength, as embodied in Esau, man of the FIELD. Thus at the beginning of the parshah, Jacob, who is about to enter the Promised Land, sends emissaries ahead to his brother Esau in the land of Seir, the FIELD of Edom (Gen. 32:4).
Esau was called the “man of the field” (Gen. 25:27), having received the trait of GEVURAH, power and strength, from Isaac, who, as the embodiment of holy GEVURAH, self-discipline, “went out to the field” (Gen. 24:63). However, the aspect of GEVURAH which Esau received from Isaac was the excess, unholy aspect: Esau’s “field” was the wild outdoors. Thus later on, the Torah writes: “And if IN THE FIELD the man finds the engaged girl and the man takes hold of her and lies with her, that man that lay with her shall die, he alone… for as a man rises up against his neighbor and murders him, so is this matter” (Deut. 22:25). This FIELD of rape and murder is the field of idolatrous slaughter: “the sacrifices that they slaughter on the face of the FIELD… their sacrifices to the GOAT-demons (SE’IRIM) that they lust after them…” (Leviticus 17:5-7). According to the Rabbis, on the day when Esau came in “from the field” (Gen. 25:29) and sold his birth-right to Jacob, Esau was “tired” from the three cardinal sins of idolatry, sexual immorality and murder.
In order for Jacob to complete his acquisition of the birth-right and enter and acquire the Promised Land, he had to demonstrate that together with the CHESSED he had inherited from his grandfather Abraham, he had also made a complete acquisition of the trait of holy GEVURAH embodied in his father Isaac. Jacob demonstrated this in his struggle with Esau, where he prevailed through applying his consummate wisdom and humility. Thus we find in our parshah that Jacob also made a treaty of boundaries and separation with Esau. This boundary will prevail “… until I will come to my lord to Seir” (Gen. 33:14) — “And when will he go? In the days of Mashiach, as it says, And the saviors will go up on Mount Zion to judge the house of Esau” (Ovadiah 1:21, in our haftara, see Rashi on Gen. 33:14). A substantial portion of our parshah is devoted to Esau, including the concluding section, which traces all the generations of Esau, including Amalek (Gen. 36:12) the historical counterfeit of Israel, and Rome (Gen. 36:43, “Magdiel”, see Rashi ad loc.).
Jacob was first characterized as “a dweller of tents” (Gen. 25:27) — the “tent” of Abraham (CHESSED) and the “tent” of Isaac (GEVURAH). “Planting” tents in a field turns the FIELD into a place of residence. Jacob’s mission was to join and synthesize the holy traits of his fathers and teachers, CHESSED and GEVURAH, in order to build TIFERES, truth, beauty and balance. This is the HOUSE, the House of Jacob — the HOUSE, family and people of Israel, and also the archetypal, model physical HOUSE that is to serve to guide all mankind to return to G-d, the “House of Prayer for all the Nations”, the “HOME” of G-d: the HOLY TEMPLE. In the course of our parshah, we see Jacob busy building houses. He travels to Succos, “TABERNACLES” — temporary homes. There Jacob built himself a HOUSE while making booths for his livestock.
Jacob then came “COMPLETE” to SheCheM (Gen. 33:18). The Hebrew word for “complete” is ShaLeM — made up of the letters Shin, signifying fire, GEVUROS, Mem signifying water, CHASADIM, and the transcendent center-column Lamed, that shoots upwards exactly like the Vav on top of the Kaf from which the Lamed is formed. SheKheM signifies SHAFEL, the lowly material world, KOCHAVIM, the stars and constellations that direct what happens here, and the MALACHIM, the angels or the spiritual forces which “drive” the stars and planets (Likutey Moharan I:9). In Shechem, Jacob “acquired the lot of the FIELD in which he PLANTED HIS TENT…” (Gen. 33:17-19). Finally, at the climax of our parshah, “And Jacob said to his HOUSE and to all that were with him, remove the strange gods that are in you and purify yourselves and change your garments. And let us arise and go up to the HOUSE of G-d…” (Gen. 35:2-3). And then the House of Jacob was complete: “And the sons of Jacob were twelve” (Gen. 35:22).
Jacob could only succeed in building this HOUSE, the House of Israel and its center HOUSE, the Holy Temple, after having won a complete victory over Esau, representing ASIYAH, the world of material action, with its many traps and dangers. When the Temple stands, order prevails, and atonement is brought to Israel and the world through sending the SEIR-goat of atonement away to die in the wilderness (Lev. 16:21-22).
A GIFT, A PRAYER… AND/OR WAR
Esau came against Jacob with the implacable envy and enmity of the serpent towards Adam, for “he will stamp on you on the head and you will bite him at the heel (AKEV)” (Gen. 3:15). Even when Esau kissed, he really came to bite (see Baal HaTurim on “and he kissed him” Gen. 33:4 — “in gematria, ‘and he came to bite him’”). Jacob, YaAKOV, was so named because he “gripped the heel (AKEV)” of Esau (Gen. 25:26). This was how Jacob reclaimed Adam’s greatness, the REISHIS, “head” or “birth-right”, thereby stamping on and crushing the serpent’s head.
Esau came with 400 men, the legions of death. 400 corresponds to the Hebrew letter Tav, last letter of the Aleph Beis, the ultimate in multiplicity. 400 signifies a complete array of numbers — 10 x 10 — on all four sides: number, measurement and limitation everywhere. This multiplicity stands counter to G-d’s unity, represented by Jacob and his twelve sons (the twelve constellations and twelve hours, time and space), arranged in order in a square (= perfect balance) around the House, the Sanctuary, the BAYIS (from BereishYS), which ends in the letter TAV. The House of Jacob comes to overcome death, MAVES, which also ends with the letter TAV. For “her feet go down to death” (Proverbs 5:5) — plurality, the worship of many gods.
Esau’s GEVURAH was BRAWN, the power of physical force. (“I have abundance” Gen. 33:9). But Jacob overcame Esau’s brawn through BRAIN, ROSH, (“kopf”), the wisdom gained from Jacob’s synthesis: this is the TIFERES-DAAS center-column, the faculty of “putting things together” (CHOCHMAH and BINAH, CHESSED and GEVURAH). This is achieved through GIVE AND TAKE. Thus Jacob is the ultimate in humility: “I am too SMALL for all Your kindnesses” (Gen. 32:11). “Say they belong to YOUR SERVANT Jacob, a gift sent to MY LORD Esau” (ibid. v. 19). “And he PROSTRATED to the ground seven times until he approached his brother…” (33:3).
For Jacob is Ya-AKOV, the one who grasps the heel, and “the HEEL (AKEV) of humility is FEAR OF G-D” (Proverbs 22:4) — “how AWESOME is this Place” (Gen. 28:17). The fear of G-d is the “beginning” of wisdom, the REISHIS, the birth-right (the Hebrew letters of the word REISHIS include the letters of the word YA-RE, “he is in awe”). For “the BEGINNING of wisdom, CHOCHMAH, is FEAR OF G-D” (Psalms 111:10) and “what wisdom made her crown, humility made the sandle on her heel (AKEV)” (Midrash).
Jacob knows that this world is but the heel of an entire system of worlds, and this is what gives him his mastery over this world. He is able to use this world to serve G-d by configuring and ordering the world properly. Jacob understands that there has to be give and take with Esau. He understands that Esau has chosen This World. Jacob thus “bribes” Esau with the “goat for Azazel”, the gift of material wealth, which Jacob, as the source of all blessings, has the power to draw down and channel to the world.
The abundant gifts of livestock that Jacob sends to Esau contain a message. Rashi on Gen. 32:15 brings a midrash showing how the varying ratio of males to females among the different kinds of live-stock alludes to the appropriate ONAH or time of conjugal union for people in different walks of life (see Rashi there). In other words, the same Jacob who sent messages to Isaac in the “lentil soup” is now teaching the sexually wild Esau a lesson in how to tame and direct animal lust for the sake of good breeding. In this way, Jacob’s material “gift” to Esau brings order and rectification to the world of ASIYAH.
Jacob offers peace and gifts (CHESED), but he is prepared for war to the very end (GEVURAH). Yet in his humility, Jacob knows that all the gifts and all the might of ASIYAH will not prevail against Esau without the help of G-d. “He prepared himself for three things: for a gift, for PRAYER and for war” (Rashi on Gen. 32:9). Prayer is at the center, in between CHESSED (gifts) and GEVURAH (war). “And Jacob said: G-d of my father Abraham and G-d of my father Isaac….” (Gen. 32:10).
Jacob struggled with Esau’s root — his SAR (“guardian angel”) — and it was his success against the angel that enabled him to prevail over Esau himself. Jacob’s success was WIN/WIN, for even Esau gained what he really wanted: the material glory of this world. While Esau takes the material wealth, Jacob struggles to find the inner “face”, the roots and inner meaning of the wealth and glory of this world. Thus Jacob calls the place of his struggle with the angel PENI-EL, “for I saw G-d FACE TO FACE” (Gen. 32:31). Yet in order for the world to continue to exist after we uncover the inner face, there has to be give and take. Jacob gets injured “in the leg” — HOD. In this world, KULO OMER KAVOD, “everything cries out glory”. In the very outcry of worldly glory, G-d’s glory becomes concealed! As a result, Jacob’s children — “the legs” — “do not eat from the slipped tendon” (GID HANASHEH). The Children of Israel are unable to eat all the material blessings of this world because of the blemished glory. In this world the glory is taken by Esau, for if Jacob’s glory, the glory of Israel, were fully revealed, there would be no free will.
THE SIN OF THE MEN OF SHECHEM
The integrity of the House — the family — of Jacob depends upon family PURITY, observance of the laws of sexual decency and restraint. “Shall our sister be treated like a prostitute?” (Gen. 34:31). Moral purity is the very foundation of the Covenant of Abraham, which is sealed in the flesh of the male Children of Israel on the organ of procreation, indicating the need to restrain animal lust and elevate it in the service of G-d in order to breed righteous children to “guard the way of HaShem” (Gen. 18:19).
The rape of Dinah was a violation of this integrity by Shechem the son of Hamor (= donkey, physical animality) the Chivi (Chivia in Aramaic is “serpent” see Targum on Gen. 3:1). Shechem is the opposite of Joseph “the Tzaddik”, the archetype of sexual discipline, who restrains himself with Potiphar’s wife and eventually receives SheKheM (the three worlds, the lowly world, that of the stars and that of the angels, as discussed above) as well as — according to the midrash — marrying Dinah’s daughter = Osnath.
Dinah’s urge to go out and about “to see the daughters of the land” (a trait unbefitting the daughter of Jacob) exposed her to danger in a world that was still untamed. Abraham and Isaac had both faced trials because of the fallen morality of the Egyptians and the Philistines. Now Jacob’s own daughter is raped by Shechem the Hittite, descendant of the accursed Canaan, son of Ham.
According to Torah law, Dinah, as a PENUYAH, “unmarried”, was not forbidden to Shechem. What was forbidden was the manner in which he “saw her… and he TOOK her and lay with her”: Shechem kidnapped Dinah. His crime was the violation of the Noachide Law against stealing, which prohibits the unlawful taking not only of goods but of people. The crime of the men of Shechem who were sitting “in the gate of their city” (Gen. 34:20) — i.e. they were the judges of the city — was that they watched this violation of Noachide law and did nothing.
In the words of Rambam (Maimonides) Laws of Kings 9:14: “In what way are they (the Children of Noah) commanded with regard to the rule of law? They are obliged to establish judges and magistrates in every region to judge cases relating to the other six commandments, and to warn the population. And any of the Children of Noah who violates one of these seven commandments is to be killed by the sword. AND FOR THIS REASON THE RULERS OF SHECHEM WERE LIABLE TO EXECUTION, for Shechem STOLE and they saw and they knew and they did not bring him to justice…”
The zeal of Levy and Shimon in perpetrating justice did not escape Jacob’s censure, both in our parshah (Gen. 34:30) and in his blessings to his sons before his death (Gen. 49:5, “Shimon and Levi are brothers, weapons of might are their swords… Accursed is their anger… I will divide them among Jacob and scatter them among Israel…”) Zeal is necessary yet dangerous. It is controlled when the zealots are divided and scattered. Levi was “scattered” by having to go around to all the farms to collect the Levitical tithes. This honorable scattering was the reward for the zeal showed by the tribe later on, at the time of the sin of the golden calf. However, Shimon’s zeal was not so pure, and led to excess, as when the Zimri, Prince of the tribe of Shimon, took Kozbi the Midianite and challenged Moses. (Zimri was killed by Pinchas, son of Aaron from the tribe of Levi, exemplar of Holy Zeal). To rectify the challenge to Moses by the Prince of the House of Shimon, members of the tribe of Shimon were “scattered” by having to become scribes and teachers of Moses’ Torah (see Rashi on Gen. 49:7).
LET US GO UP TO THE HOUSE OF G-D
The significance of the section of the parshah describing Jacob’s “pilgrimage” with his family to Beth El, the HOUSE of G-d, has been discussed above. At Beth El, Jacob’s acquisition of the birthright and the Promised Land was sealed, and he attained his name of greatness — Israel — from the mouth of G-d.
The House of Jacob was completed by the birth of Benjamin, who was the only one of Jacob’s twelve sons to be born in the Land of Israel and who founded the tribe that was to contribute the first king of Israel, Saul, who was “head and shoulders above all the men of Israel” in his outstanding modesty and righteousness. Shamai, the Mishnaic Tanna and Av Beis Din (“father of the court”) in the time of Hillel the Elder, was a descendant of King Saul, while Hillel, who was the Nasi or Prince (and as such, the highest in rank) was a descendant of King David. Thus the MACHLOKES (controversy) throughout the SHAS (6 orders of Mishneh), between BEIS SHAMAI and BEIS HILLEL is bound up with the struggle between Judah (son of Leah) and Benjamin (son of Rachel). This struggle is resolved through the process of clarifying the halachah, which practically always follows the opinion of Beis Hillel.
Conflict and its resolution is the theme of all the remaining parshiyos in the book of Genesis from next week (VAYESHEV) until the end of Genesis (VAYECHI). This is the story of the rectification of the world, which comes about through Mashiach son of David (who is from the tribe of Judah, son of Leah) and Mashiach son of Joseph (son of Rachel). In order to clear the way for the story of rectification, namely the story of Joseph and his brothers (in which the bond between Judah and Benjamin plays a central part), the Torah concludes our parshah of VAYISHLACH with an account of the generations of Esau. The theme of sexual immorality recurs in this account, for several of Esau’s children and grandchildren were MAMZERIM (bastards — see Rashi on Gen. 36:2 and 36:12 etc.)
This account ends with the account of the Seven Kings who ruled over Edom — and died — before there was a king in Israel. It is well known that these Seven Kings allude to the seven “fallen” Sefiros of the World of TOHU (devastation), while the last-mentioned king — the eighth, of whom it does not say “and he died” — is Hadar = Abraham, father of the World of Rectification.
This throws light on the meaning of Rashi’s first comment on next week’s parshah (on Gen. 37:1): “After the Torah writes for you the dwellings of Esau and his generations in brief, since they were not sufficiently important to tell in detail… the Torah now comes to the dwellings of Jacob and his generations at length and all the cycles (GILGULIM) of causes, for they are important before G-d… It can be compared to a jewel that fell in the sand. A person feels through and sieves all the sand until he finds the jewel. And when he finds the jewel, he throws away the pebbles and takes the jewel.”
Shabbat Shalom! – Rabbi Avraham Yehushua Greenbaum
Haftarat Vayishlach – And he sent – Obadiah 1:1-21
Obadiah’s prophecy is all about the descendants of Esau [i.e. Edom], and the wrath of Messiah that will come upon them in the last days.
Our reading from the haftarah this week is the entire book of Obadiah.
The vision of Obadiah: Thus says the HaShem G-d concerning Edom…
For violence against your brother Jacob, shame shall cover you, and you shall be cut off forever. In the day that you stood on the other side – in the day that strangers carried captive his forces, when foreigners entered his gates and cast lots for Jerusalem – even you were as one of them. But you should not have gazed on the day of your brother in the day of his captivity; nor should you have rejoiced over the children of Judah in the day of their destruction; nor should you have spoken proudly in the day of distress. You should not have entered the gate of My people in the day of their calamity. Indeed, you should not have gazed on their affliction in the day of their calamity, nor laid hands on their substance in the day of their calamity. -Obadiah 1:10-13
For the day of HaShem upon all the nations is near; as you have done, it shall be done to you; your reprisal shall return upon your own head. -Obadiah 1:15
But on Mount Zion there shall be deliverance, and there shall be holiness; the house of Jacob shall possess their possessions. The house of Jacob shall be a fire, and the house of Joseph a flame; but the house of Esau shall be stubble; they shall kindle them and devour them, and no survivor shall remain of the house of Esau,” for HaShem has spoken. -Obadiah 1:17-18
Isaiah describes it like this: Who is this who comes from Edom, with dyed garments from Bozrah, this One who is glorious in His apparel, traveling in the greatness of His strength? – “I who speak in righteousness, mighty to save.” Why is Your apparel red, and Your garments like one who treads in the winepress? “I have trodden the winepress alone, and from the peoples no one was with Me. For I have trodden them in My anger, and trampled them in My fury; their blood is sprinkled upon My garments, and I have stained all My robes. For the day of vengeance is in My heart, and the year of My redeemed has come.” -Isaiah 63:1-4
The book of Revelation describes it with similar language: Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war. His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself. He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of G-d. And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses. Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty G-d. And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND L-RD OF lords. -Revelation 19:11-16
The Gutnick Chumash, a Chassidic version of the Torah and haftarah translates Obadiah 1:21 this way: And then when Mashiach [Messiah] and his ministers, the saviors of Mount Tzion [Jerusalem], will ascend the Mount of Se’ir to judge the children of Esau for all their wrongdoings to Israel, then everyone will willingly accept G-d’s sovereignty, and G-d will be King – all nations will recognize His sole authority. -Obadiah 1:21
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