KOSHER DELIGHT - YOUR JEWISH ONLINE MAGAZINE!
By Rabbi Yonassan Biggs
NY City Candle
Shabbat ends 5:15
lighting times anywhere in the world you can go to my
website, www.chabadgn.com/Candles and adjust the
location. Chanukah begins December 6th
bless and guard every Jew in the land of Israel and
throughout the world and may the vile acts of terror we
have recently suffered be the last suffering before the
Shalom and Bracha!
Shabbat we read the portion of Vayishlach. Two weeks ago
we read about Yaakov receiving the blessings that would
have otherwise gone to his brother Esav, thereby
arousing Esav’s wrath. At the conclusion of last week’s
portion, Yaakov was returning to the land of Israel from
Charan, accompanied by his family and acquired wealth.
In the beginning of this week’s portion Yaakov sent
messengers to Esav to greet him. The messengers informed
him that Esav was coming with four hundred troops to
Upon hearing this, Yaakov split his
camp and animals into two groups, saying that “If Esav
will attack one camp, the second will be saved.”
Thereafter he prayed to Hashem to save him in the merit
of his forefathers and to remember His promises to
Yaakov to protect him. He then prepared and sent a
colossal gift to his brother. With Hashem’s help, Esav
accepted the present and reconciled with Yaakov.
Seemingly, Yaakov’s preparations demand a deeper
explanation. Why did he first divide his camp and only
thereafter pray? Further, how was he positive that if
one camp were destroyed the other would remain? Esav was
approaching with four hundred men! Rashi explains that
he declared that he (Yaakov) would personally battle for
the second camp. Why could he only protect part of his
camp? Further, did he leave some of his children in one
camp as he joined the second?
Yaakov had been
told by Hashem to return to Israel and that Hashem would
bless him there. He knew that the future of Torah was
dependent upon him and his seed. He had great faith in
Hashem’s blessing. He feared, however, that perhaps his
great wealth and stature had interfered with his
connection to Hashem. When Yaakov divided his camp, he
put all of his wealth and servants in one camp, and his
family in the other. He prayed only for his family. Once
he separated himself from his wealth, he was sure that
the remaining camp would be secure. If he needed to
battle for his family, no one could defeat him.
Sometimes we are faced with difficult choices. Our
advancement in wealth and social status are pitted
against our families or our service of Hashem. We must
learn from Yaakov that wealth is only a tool to serve
Hashem and enhance our family lives. We must own our
money rather than letting our money own us.
Torah concludes the saga of Esav that Yaakov continued
in peace and “complete.” Rashi explains that all that he
had given Esav as a present was replenished. This
teaches us that by placing Hashem and family first,
Hashem guards of our possessions as well.
parted with Esav with the assurance that he would meet
him at mount Seir. Rashi explains that this will be when
Moshiach comes, as we say in the daily prayers
“Redeemers will ascend mount Zion to judge the mount of
Esav and Hashem will rule as King.” May we merit his
Dedicated in esteemed memory of
Sarah Paya Bas Nosson (Pearl) Ashley, a woman who truly
put family and Judaism first.
May Hashem grant
her perfect bliss in Gan Eden, bless her family in every
way and guide them in her footsteps.
A Project of
Chabad of Great Neck
400 East Shore Rd. Great Neck NY
516 654 6000
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