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Rabbi's parsha class - veyechi

12/23/2015 10:57:31 AM


Parsha Insights – VaYechi 

     Joseph brought his two sons to Jacob for a blessing. Jacob placed his right hand on the head of Efrayim, the younger brother, instead of Menashe, the first born of Joseph. Joseph protested. “This one is the first born. Put your right hand on his head!”

Question: Why was Joseph so insistent that Menashe be blessed first and strongest?  What lesson can we derive from this?

Answer:  Joseph was teaching us how to survive in exile. First there must be the reaction represented by Menashe.  He received his name because, “G-d has caused me to forget (NaShaNi) all my hardships and all that was in my father's house.”  This expressed Joseph’s pain in being in a place which made him forget his father’s house. Efrayim was named because, “G-d has made me fruitful (hiFrani) in the land of my subjugation.” This expressed how Joseph succeeded in Egypt.

     To survive in exile, a Jew must feel “out of place” to ensure he does not assimilate.  This reaction is represented by Menashe. Then the Jew can realize  the primary purpose of being in exile:  To observe Torah and Mitzvot even there, and illuminate the darkness. This is represented by Efrayim.


One should be very meticulous in responding to Kaddish, since the sanctity of Kaddish is greater than all sanctities. It is better to respond to Kaddish than to Kedusha. The Mitzvah of Kaddish is to hear the beginning of Kaddish and to respond “Amen Yehay Shmay Raba etc”


Mashiach Matters:

Mashiach shall restore the Bet Hamikdash in Jerusalem , that will stand forever, in fulfillment of the Divine prophecy of Ezekiel 37:26-28, “I shall give My Sanctuary in their midst forever.  The nations shall know that I am G-d who sanctifies Israel, when My Sanctuary shall be in the midst of them forever.”

Thu, February 20 2020 25 Shevat 5780