Gen. 29 – Unearth Torah Gold

 

  • Dear Ones. how do we enjoy a deep rich study experience? How do we recognize the trail signs as we pass through The Holy Scriptures?

We can grow our Torah knowledge of Hebrew, customs, traditions, and chronology within The Holy Scriptures. We can enjoy more honey as we study through The Holy Scriptures.

 

Genesis 29.10 – 11

And it came to pass when Jacob saw Rachel, the daughter of Laban his mother’s brother, and the sheep of Laban his mother’s brother, that Jacob went near, and rolled the stone from the well’s mouth, and watered the flock of Laban, his mother’s brother. And Jacob kissed Rachel, and lifted his voice, and wept. 

Why did Jacob weep? Answer: Jacob didn’t have any gifts to give his future wife Rachel, her father, Laban, or other members of Rachel’s family. Jacob had NOTHING but his staff and the clothes on his back. How is it that Jacob had nothing to give? We will see. Some interpret ‘Jacob wept’ to mean, Jacob could foresee Rachel would not be buried with him in the cave of Machpelah, so he cried.

 

Genesis 32.11 [Twenty years down the road, when Jacob flees Laban, he says,] ‘I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies, and of all the truth, which you have shown to your servant; for with my staff I passed over this Jordan, and now I have become two bands.’

Why did Jacob have only His staff and clothes? After all, Jacob received his father’s blessing and his brother’s double portion of Isaac’s wealth.

 

Genesis 26.35 – 36

[Isaac] said, ‘Your brother came with cunning, and has taken away your blessing.’ 36 [Esau] said, Is not he rightly named Jacob? He has supplanted me these two times; [Jacob] took away my birthright; and, behold, now [Jacob] has taken away my blessing. And he said, Have you not reserved a blessing for me?

 

Let’s consider the blessing of the firstborn. Jacob received a double portion of Isaac’s wealth. How were the portions determined? Isaac had two sons Jacob and Esau. Isaac divided his wealth into three portions. Jacob received two portions, i.e., 2/3rds Of Isaac’s wealth. Esau received one portion. i.e., 1/3 of Isaac’s wealth. Our father, Israel, gave the honor of the double portion to Joseph. Israel had twelve sons. He divided his wealth by thirteen. Israel gave Joseph’s sons each 1/13th of his wealth. Israel said to Joseph, ‘your two sons, Ephraim and Manasseh, who were born to you in the land of Egypt before I came to you to Egypt, are mine; as Reuben and Simeon, they shall be mine.’ [Also see Genesis 49]

 

When Isaac sent Jacob away to live with Laban and to marry one of his daughters, The Torah does not say anything about Jacob traveling with all his servants, cattle, gold. Yet, Jacob took all his wealth and left for Padan-Aram to Laban, son of Bethuel the Aramean, the brother of Rebekah Jacob’s and Esau’s mother. That is why Esau was so angry and filled with hate towards Jacob. That is why Esau wanted to murder Jacob. Esau saw the vast wealth of Isaac departing with Jacob.

 

What happened to all of Jacobs’s wealth? What happened to Jacob’s double portion? When Jacob fled his father, Isaac’s home, Eliphaz, the son of Esau, went after Jacob and overtook him. Eliphaz was ordered by his evil father to murder his Uncle Jacob. How could he do such a horrible act? Eliphaz was raised by his grandfather, Isaac, in the precepts of Righteousness, Purity, Holiness, Truth, and Spirituality. He was taught The Words of The Torah. Eliphaz did not want to disobey his father’s order to kill his Uncle Jacob even though he realized it was a horrible evil order. Eliphaz recognized this responsibility to his father, while at some time, he accepted his duty to be righteous! He was conflicted! How could he do both? When he overtook his Uncle, he explained his predicament. His Uncle Jacob was a Torah Scholar. He helped him sort things out.

 

So many of us are in predicaments. We have strong allegiances. We feel emotional obligations to others as well as our responsibility to Observe The Torah. That is where Eliphaz was. So what did he do? He consulted with a Tzaddik, i.e., a Righteous man. He consulted with Jacob regarding his predicament. Jacob’s counsel to his nephew was to take everything that he owned. Because a poor man is considered dead, Eliphaz heeded his Uncle Jacob’s counsel and took everything, but the clothes Jacob was wearing and his staff. Eliphaz did not know the value of his Uncle’s staff. Rabbi Yisrael Isser Zvi Hertz, e.g., The Sapirstein Edition Rashi Bereisheit / Genesis {Brooklyn, New York: Mesorah Publications, Ltd. First Edition 10th impression 2007}, p 320

 

Genesis 29.

And it came to pass, when Laban heard the tidings of Jacob his sister’s son, that he ran to meet him, and embraced him, and kissed him, and brought him to his house. And he told Laban all these things.

When Laban heard the tidings of Jacob, his sister’s son, what did he think? What did he do? Rashi says He ran to greet him. Laban thought Jacob brought gifts. He thought Eliezer, the servant brought ten camels loaded with presents. I wonder what gifts Abraham’s grandson, Jacob, has brought? When he saw nothing, He embraced him intending to feel for a purse filled with gold coins. Nothing was attached to Jacob’s body, so Laban kissed Jacob to determine if his mouth was full of pearls. Then Jacob told Laban he had nothing. See Genesis 29.13. Rabbi Avrohom Davis, The Mesudah Chumash A New Linear Translation Bereishis (Hoboken New Jersey, KTVA Publishing House, Inc., 1991) p 325

 

Dear Ones, as noted in Genesis 29, there is a great deal of rich knowledge provided to those who are acquainted with Hebrew, customs, traditions, and chronology within The Holy Scriptures. These are excellent tools to have and use.

 

Blessings and Peace,

 

Dr. Akiva Gamliel Belk

Author

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