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by Zvi Akiva Fleisher

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Ch. 28, v. 10: "Va'yeitzei Yaakov miB'eir Shova" - And Yaakov left B'eir Sheva - Rashi points out that the seemingly superfluous statement that he left teaches us that his departure left an imprint upon B'eir Sheva, "its lustre, glory, and beauty departed." This is alluded to mathematically in a most interesting manner. If we take Yaakov=182 out of B'eir Sheva=575, we are left with 393, the numerical value of "ponoh zivoh hodoh v'hadoroh." (Yalkut Lekach Tov)

Ch. 28, v. 10: "Va'yeitzei Yaakov miB'eir Shova" - And Yaakov left B'eir Sheva - In a homiletic manner Rabbeinu Chaim Paltiel interprets these words to mean that Yaakov left the wellspring of Torah (Yeshivas Eiver), which is interpreted in 72 manners.

Ch. 28, v. 11: "Va'yikach mei'avnei hamokome" - And he took from the stones of the place - Chizkuni writes that he took from the stones that were once the altar upon which Yitzchok was offered.

Ch. 28, v. 11: "Bamokome, hamokome, bamokome" - Our verse mentions "the place" 3 times. Perhaps it alludes to the 3 Botei Mikdosh that will stand on this location. (Nirreh li)

Ch. 28, v. 11,12: "Va'yishkav bamokome hahu, Va'yachalome" - And he lied down in that place, And he dreamt - The prophetic dream that Yaakov experienced was partly a result of the holy location. (Rabbeinu Efrayim)

Ch. 28, v. 20: "Ushmorani ba'derech ha'zeh asher onochi holeich" - And He will guard me in this path that I walk - M.R. 70:4 says that Yaakov prayed to Hashem that He protect him from loshon hora. This is well understood when we realize that Yaakov had spent the previous years in the study hall of Shem, where there was no great fear of speaking or hearing loshon hora. Now that he was on his way to Lovon, "ba'derech ha'zeh asher onochi holeich," there was a great fear of his hearing loshon hora. (Holy Chofetz Chaim in Z'chor l'Miriam) This is a Torah basis for praying to be saved from loshon hora. Chofetz Chaim Foundation and others have printed a most moving prayer for this, taken from the end of Sefer Chovas Hashmiroh by the Chofetz Chaim. We also have the thrice-daily prayer of "Elokai n'tzor l'shoni mei'ro."

Ch. 28, v. 20: "Lechem le'echole u'veged lilbosh" - Bread to eat and a garment to wear - Why didn't Yaakov just say "lechem u'veged"? Isn't it obvious that bread is for consumption and clothes for wearing? If one is sick and bed-ridden he will not wear normal outer-clothing, but rather pajamas or a robe. Likewise, he will eat almost nothing. Yaakov was also asking for good health. (Rabbi Shimon Agasi in Imrei Shimon)

Ch. 28, v. 21: "V'hoyoh Hashem li lEilokim" - And Hashem will be to me as Elokim - These words should not be interpreted as being a precondition to Yaakov's acceptance of Hashem as his Master. Far be it from even the lowest ben Yisroel to believe that one of our holy Patriarchs predicated his total trust in Hashem upon any conditions. Rather, it means that Yaakov prayed to Hashem that He be for him as the Ever-present Helper, helping him to realize his goals.

(Rabbi Avrohom ben hoRambam)

Ch. 28, v. 22: "A'seir aasrenu loch" -I will surely tithe it for You - Besides the benefit of fulfilling Hashem's will when we give charity, there is also benefit for the donour, that it will bring him wealth, as the gemara Taanis 9a derives from the words "a'seir t'a'seir" (Dvorim 14:22), - tithe so that you may become wealthy. The gemara goes on to say that we are even permitted to "test" Hashem's fulfillment of His promise as a response to our giving charity. Yaakov told Hashem that his lone intention in tithing was LOCH, only for You, only because You command that we give charity. (Tiferes Y'honoson)

Ch. 29, v. 1: "Va'yiso Yaakov raglov va'yeilech artzoh vnei kedem" - And Yaakov lifted his feet and went to the land of the people of the east - Why mention that he lifted his feet? Also why didn't the verse clearly state that he went to Choron? As stated in Rashi on verse 11, Elifaz was sent to kill Yaakov, but instead settled on taking all his possessions. Yaakov was very afraid that when Elifaz would return to Eisov without his scalp that Eisov would take chase. This is why Yaakov did a "heib feess," lifted his legs to move quickly along towards his destination. He similarly did not want Eisov to know where he was going, and yet didn't want to lie to anyone about his destination. When asked where he was headed, he would respond, "artzoh vnei kedem," without disclosing the exact destination. (Rabbi Yehudoh ben Atar in Minchas Yehudoh)

Ch. 29, v. 6: "Va'yomer lo'hem hasholo'm lo va'yomru sholo'm" - And he said to them is there peace to him and they said peace - Note that they did not respond with the same phrase "sholo'm LO." This is because the verse in Yeshayohu 57:21 says, "Ein sholo'm omar Elokai lorsho'im." (Baal Haturim) Yaakov already had a taste of what was in store.

Ch. 29, v. 17: "Y'fas to'ar vifas ma'reh" - Pretty of form and pretty of appearance - The Ohr Hachaim Hakodosh explains these two points as follows: "Y'fas to'ar" means that each feature is pretty. "Y'fas ma'res" means that the composite picture is pretty.

Ch. 29, v. 18: "Sheva shonim" - Seven years - Why did Lovon immediately agree to Yaakov's offer? Why didn't he attempt to extract even more work out of him? He thought that if he were to press Yaakov for more, he might not give it his fullest effort. (Oznayim laTorah)

Ch. 29, v. 21: "Hovoh es ishti ki molu yomoy v'ovo'oh ei'lehoh" - Give me my wife as my days have been completed so that I may come upon her - Rashi says that Yaakov told Lovon that he was now 84 years old and was in a hurry to establish 12 tribes. Note that the numerical value of the first letters of this phrase from our verse is 84. (Kesef Tzoruf)

Ch. 29, v. 21: "V'ovo'oh ei'lehoh" - So that I may come upon her - The gemara Sotoh 17 says that when there is harmony in the home the Holy Spirit of Hashem, the letters Yud and Hei, reside there. When a son is born the letter Vov is added, and when a daughter is born another letter Hei is added. This completes the Holy 4 letter Name of Hashem. This was Yaakov's intention. "V'avo'oh" is spelled as "v'ovo," plus an additional Vov and Hei. "Ei'lehoh" can be read as "el," TO the letters Yud and Hei. Yaakov told Lovon that he wanted to now marry and reproduce so that he would add the letters Vov and Hei to the Yud and Hei that were already present. (Ben Ish Chai)

Ch. 30, v. 33: "V'onsoh bi tzidkosi b'yom mochor" - And my righteousness will testify for me tomorrow - You can be sure that I was honest and stole nothing from you by virtue of my belief in "yom mochor," that there will be a "tomorrow" when I'll be in front of the celestial court, which will judge my every action. (Rabbi Nochum Weidenfeld baal Chazon Nochum)

Ch. 30, v. 34: "Hein lu y'hi chidvo'recho" - Yes let it be as per your words - Lovon meant to say that he was hopeful that Yaakov's words "gonuv hu iti" of the previous verse would be fulfilled. He clearly stated that he hoped to find cattle in Yaakov's possession that don't belong to him. He was eager to show that Yaakov was also thief. (Chasam Sofer)



See also Oroh V'Simchoh - Meshech Chochmoh on the Weekly Parsha and Chasidic Insights

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