Tuesday, December 5, 2023

Vayeshev - Reading #3

Vayeshev וַיֵּשֶׁב - And He Settled
Genesis 37:1 - 40:23
Reading #3 - Genesis 37:23–36

My Thoughts: 

Doesn’t Hashem always provide a way of escape? Here is Joseph thrown into a water-less pit, left to die. And along comes a caravan of men to rescue him. The brothers see this and seem to be alright with it. In fact, they devise a plan to prove to their father that he is dead (blood on his tunic). The Torah is full of people, just like you and me, that are not perfect by any measure and who make distinctly bad choices. The point is, Joseph is rescued and sold. He lives. Maybe not the life he had, but he is given another chance at life. Hashem is like that. I can think of so many times in my life when He “saved” me from a really bad situation. Sometimes miraculously. If you need “rescuing” right now, lift your eyes up to Him and ask Him to save you!


Today look around you and see if you know of anyone who has “fallen into a pit”. Someone who may be suffering from loneliness, depression or hopelessness. See if you can find a way to “lift” them out of their darkness. Pray for them and ask Hashem how you could be of help. You may be surprised. Your first step may be to simply go and visit them and talk and listen. Hashem will show you what is next. They will be blessed and so will you!

Reading #3 - Genesis 37:23–36

23 When Joseph came to his brothers, they stripped Joseph of his tunic, the tunic of many colors that was on him; 24 and they took him, and threw him into the pit. The pit was empty. There was no water in it.

25 They sat down to eat bread, and they lifted up their eyes and looked, and saw a caravan of Ishmaelites was coming from Gilead, with their camels bearing spices and balm and myrrh, going to carry it down to Egypt. 26 Judah said to his brothers, “What profit is it if we kill our brother and conceal his blood? 27 Come, and let’s sell him to the Ishmaelites, and not let our hand be on him; for he is our brother, our flesh.” His brothers listened to him. 28 Midianites who were merchants passed by, and they drew and lifted up Joseph out of the pit, and sold Joseph to the Ishmaelites for twenty pieces of silver. The merchants brought Joseph into Egypt.

29 Reuben returned to the pit, and saw that Joseph wasn’t in the pit; and he tore his clothes. 30 He returned to his brothers, and said, “The child is no more; and I, where will I go?” 31 They took Joseph’s tunic, and killed a male goat, and dipped the tunic in the blood. 32 They took the tunic of many colors, and they brought it to their father, and said, “We have found this. Examine it, now, and see if it is your son’s tunic or not.”

33 He recognized it, and said, “It is my son’s tunic. An evil animal has devoured him. Joseph is without doubt torn in pieces.” 34 Jacob tore his clothes, and put sackcloth on his waist, and mourned for his son many days. 35 All his sons and all his daughters rose up to comfort him, but he refused to be comforted. He said, “For I will go down to Sheol to my son, mourning.” His father wept for him. 36 The Midianites sold him into Egypt to Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh’s, the captain of the guard.

Monday, December 4, 2023

Vayeshev - Reading #2

Vayeshev וַיֵּשֶׁב - And He Settled

Genesis 37:1 - 40:23

Reading #2 - Genesis 37:12–22

My Thoughts: 

Joseph’s brothers plot to kill him. It appears that the special “privilege” that has been given to Joseph has really upset his brothers, which is a totally normal reaction. But, to be upset and to plan to kill someone are two different reactions. Reuben stands up for Joseph (sort of) and recommends they don’t kill him, just throw him in the pit and someone will discover him. So, he can learn his lesson.

Have you ever wanted to throw someone off a cliff? Maybe not physically, but in your heart you have despised them and hoped they would die? Or maybe even you have said or done hurtful things to this person because of your jealousy of them? I believe this is the “root” of gossip. When we are jealous or offended by someone else, we want to talk about them in a negative way to get back at them. It’s not right, and if you have done or are doing this -- stop. Hashem does not like gossip and considers it a sin. It can keep you from a “right” relationship with Hashem. Amend your ways and seek forgiveness.


I have already given you a challenge in the section above. To stop gossiping. I heard it said once that if you couldn’t say something to someone’s face, then you better not say it at all. If you are talking to someone and they start gossiping, just tell them you would rather not participate in this conversation without the person you are talking about being there. We can learn to stop gossiping and we can gently teach others to do the same.

Reading #2 - Genesis 37:12–22

12 His brothers went to feed their father’s flock in Shechem. 13 Israel said to Joseph, “Aren’t your brothers feeding the flock in Shechem? Come, and I will send you to them.” He said to him, “Here I am.”

14 He said to him, “Go now, see whether it is well with your brothers, and well with the flock; and bring me word again.” So he sent him out of the valley of Hebron, and he came to Shechem. 15 A certain man found him, and behold, he was wandering in the field. The man asked him, “What are you looking for?”

16 He said, “I am looking for my brothers. Tell me, please, where they are feeding the flock.”

17 The man said, “They have left here, for I heard them say, ‘Let’s go to Dothan.’”

Joseph went after his brothers, and found them in Dothan. 18 They saw him afar off, and before he came near to them, they conspired against him to kill him. 19 They said to one another, “Behold, this dreamer comes. 20 Come now therefore, and let’s kill him, and cast him into one of the pits, and we will say, ‘An evil animal has devoured him.’ We will see what will become of his dreams.”

21 Reuben heard it, and delivered him out of their hand, and said, “Let’s not take his life.” 22 Reuben said to them, “Shed no blood. Throw him into this pit that is in the wilderness, but lay no hand on him”—that he might deliver him out of their hand, to restore him to his father.

Sunday, December 3, 2023

Vayeshev - Reading #1

Vayeshev וַיֵּשֶׁב - And He Settled

Genesis 37:1 - 40:23

Reading #1 - Genesis 37:1–11

My Thoughts: 

Here is an interesting Bible Study for you. Google Joseph’s coat of many colors. I did so and found that maybe this coat did NOT have many colors but actually could have been white wool. Also, that the Hebrew translation could mean that the coat was long and had long sleeves -- a symbol of someone of “royalty” or importance and one that did not do menial work. No wonder Joseph’s brothers were a little upset about all this! Joseph was definitely his father’s favorite and given special privilege? Anyways, look it up and see what you can find out. 


Do you ever treat one of your children in a more special way then the others? Have you ever said, “You are my favorite child?” Families can mistakenly do that. Maybe with the oldest, or the youngest -- singling them out to be somehow “better” than the other kids. Search your heart and see if this is true. If it is, try to find some special time with your other children (whether young or adult) and make sure they understand that ALL your children are equal and you love them all the same. Maybe point out something very special that you love about this particular one (that you are talking to) and make them feel special. You may even address that if they have heard or thought they heard that you favored another sibling, that it was simply not true and a misunderstanding. This is super important. You want your children to know that they are all loved equally! That they are all special in your eyes. And prove it to them!

Reading #1 - Genesis 37:1–11

37 Jacob lived in the land of his father’s travels, in the land of Canaan. 2 This is the history of the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brothers. He was a boy with the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah, his father’s wives. Joseph brought an evil report of them to their father. 3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age, and he made him a tunic of many colors. 4 His brothers saw that their father loved him more than all his brothers, and they hated him, and couldn’t speak peaceably to him.

5 Joseph dreamed a dream, and he told it to his brothers, and they hated him all the more. 6 He said to them, “Please hear this dream which I have dreamed: 7 for behold, we were binding sheaves in the field, and behold, my sheaf arose and also stood upright; and behold, your sheaves came around, and bowed down to my sheaf.”

8 His brothers asked him, “Will you indeed reign over us? Will you indeed have dominion over us?” They hated him all the more for his dreams and for his words. 9 He dreamed yet another dream, and told it to his brothers, and said, “Behold, I have dreamed yet another dream: and behold, the sun and the moon and eleven stars bowed down to me.” 10 He told it to his father and to his brothers. His father rebuked him, and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Will I and your mother and your brothers indeed come to bow ourselves down to the earth before you?” 11 His brothers envied him, but his father kept this saying in mind.

Vayeshev - Week #9

Vayeshev וַיֵּשֶׁב - And He Settled

Genesis 37:1-40:23

Amos 2:6-3:8

Matthew 1:18-25

1.1 First reading — Genesis 37:1–11

1.2 Second reading — Genesis 37:12–22

1.3 Third reading — Genesis 37:23–36

1.4 Fourth reading — Genesis chapter 38

1.5 Fifth reading — Genesis 39:1–6

1.6 Sixth reading — Genesis 39:7–23

1.7 Seventh reading — Genesis chapter 40

Saturday, December 2, 2023

Vayishlach - Reading #7

Vayishlach, וַיִּשְׁל - And He Sent

Genesis 32:4-36:43

Haftarah: Hosea 11:7-12:12, Obadiah 1:1-21

Apostolic Scripture: Matthew 2:13-23

Shabbat Reading #7 - Genesis 36:20–43

My Thoughts:

Here we have a history of Esau’s descendants, Kings and Chiefs. For some reason this history and particular names are important. In today's world we don’t pay much attention to ancestry or the recording of names and family trees (some people do). I tried to go back just to my grandparents and their parents -- and it took me years to find names and cities of birth. And quite honestly, because my great grandparents were in Poland, I have very little information about them. It has been impossible to get details. But, then we read the Torah and we see great detail given to names in ancestral lines. Maybe we should try to do this also. You can start today and record all the relatives -- by name -- that you know about. 


Today you can start making a family tree. Start with those you know. And start researching. Go to ancestry.com and sign up. It is worth every penny. And usually you can get a lot done in a month’s time. It is so important to do this for your children and your grandchildren. Our ancestors have interesting and some life-changing stories. It’s time you recorded them!

Reading #7 - Genesis 36:20–43

36:20 These are the sons of Seir the Horite, the inhabitants of the land: Lotan, Shobal, Zibeon, Anah, 21 Dishon, Ezer, and Dishan. These are the chiefs who came of the Horites, the children of Seir in the land of Edom. 22 The children of Lotan were Hori and Heman. Lotan’s sister was Timna. 23 These are the children of Shobal: Alvan, Manahath, Ebal, Shepho, and Onam. 24 These are the children of Zibeon: Aiah and Anah. This is Anah who found the hot springs in the wilderness, as he fed the donkeys of Zibeon his father. 25 These are the children of Anah: Dishon and Oholibamah, the daughter of Anah. 26 These are the children of Dishon: Hemdan, Eshban, Ithran, and Cheran. 27 These are the children of Ezer: Bilhan, Zaavan, and Akan. 28 These are the children of Dishan: Uz and Aran. 29 These are the chiefs who came of the Horites: chief Lotan, chief Shobal, chief Zibeon, chief Anah, 30 chief Dishon, chief Ezer, and chief Dishan. These are the chiefs who came of the Horites, according to their chiefs in the land of Seir.

31 These are the kings who reigned in the land of Edom, before any king reigned over the children of Israel. 32 Bela, the son of Beor, reigned in Edom. The name of his city was Dinhabah. 33 Bela died, and Jobab, the son of Zerah of Bozrah, reigned in his place. 34 Jobab died, and Husham of the land of the Temanites reigned in his place. 35 Husham died, and Hadad, the son of Bedad, who struck Midian in the field of Moab, reigned in his place. The name of his city was Avith. 36 Hadad died, and Samlah of Masrekah reigned in his place. 37 Samlah died, and Shaul of Rehoboth by the river, reigned in his place. 38 Shaul died, and Baal Hanan the son of Achbor reigned in his place. 39 Baal Hanan the son of Achbor died, and Hadar reigned in his place. The name of his city was Pau. His wife’s name was Mehetabel, the daughter of Matred, the daughter of Mezahab.

40 These are the names of the chiefs who came from Esau, according to their families, after their places, and by their names: chief Timna, chief Alvah, chief Jetheth, 41 chief Oholibamah, chief Elah, chief Pinon, 42 chief Kenaz, chief Teman, chief Mibzar, 43 chief Magdiel, and chief Iram. These are the chiefs of Edom, according to their habitations in the land of their possession. This is Esau, the father of the Edomites.


My Thoughts: 

In Obadiah 1:15 we read a fearful admonition, “For the day of Hashem is near all the nations! As you have done, it will be done to you. Your deeds will return upon your own head.” Nations and the people within them believe that they can cheat, kill and steal -- without repercussion. Simply not true. A nation may get away with sin for a while, but not for long. Every deceitful nation has been brought down throughout the centuries. Now the country I live in -- the United States of America -- is also in trouble. For almost 50 years we have legalized abortion and over 60 million babies have had their lives terminated in the womb. The womb is supposed to be the safest place in the world, now it is truly unsafe. There will be (and has been) a severe consequence from Hashem for what we have done. We have blood in our land and that is one of seven things that Hashem detests (Proverbs 6:16-19). Only sincere, heartfelt prayer and repentance will save us. Let’s begin this process today.


Take a minute to reflect on what you have done to others that you most certainly would NOT like to be done to you. Write them down. Repent and make amends. If you are unable to make amends directly to the people you have hurt, then go to Hashem and do it through Him. Otherwise, be fearful for your “deeds will return upon your own head.” And that would be just awful. Let’s avoid that if we can.

Haftarah: Hosea 11:7-12:12, Obadiah 1:1-21

11:7 My people are determined to turn from Me.

    Though they call to the Most High,

    He certainly won’t exalt them.

8 “How can I give you up, Ephraim?

    How can I hand you over, Israel?

    How can I make you like Admah?

    How can I make you like Zeboiim?

My heart is turned within Me,

    My compassion is aroused.

9 I will not execute the fierceness of My anger.

    I will not return to destroy Ephraim:

    for I am Elohim, and not man; the Holy One among you;

    and I will not come in wrath.

10 They will walk after Hashem,

    who will roar like a lion;

    for he will roar, and the children will come trembling from the west.

11 They will come trembling like a bird out of Egypt,

    and like a dove out of the land of Assyria;

and I will settle them in their houses,” says Hashem.

12 Ephraim surrounds me with falsehood,

    and the house of Israel with deceit.

    Judah still strays from Elohim,

    and is unfaithful to the Holy One.

12:1 Ephraim feeds on wind,

    and chases the east wind.

    He continually multiplies lies and desolation.

    They make a covenant with Assyria,

    and oil is carried into Egypt.

2 Hashem also has a controversy with Judah,

    and will punish Jacob according to his ways;

    according to his deeds he will repay him.

3 In the womb he took his brother by the heel;

    and in his manhood he contended with Elohim.

4 Indeed, he struggled with the angel, and prevailed;

    he wept, and made supplication to him.

    He found him at Bethel, and there he spoke with us,

5     even Hashem, the Elohim of Armies;

    Hashem is His name of renown!

6 Therefore turn to your Elohim.

    Keep kindness and justice,

    and wait continually for your Elohim.

7 A merchant has dishonest scales in his hand.

    He loves to defraud.

8 Ephraim said, “Surely I have become rich,

    I have found myself wealth.

    In all my wealth they won’t find in me any iniquity that is sin.”

9 “But I am Hashem your Elohim from the land of Egypt.

    I will yet again make you dwell in tents,

    as in the days of the solemn feast.

10 I have also spoken to the prophets,

    and I have multiplied visions;

    and by the ministry of the prophets I have used parables.

11 If Gilead is wicked,

    surely they are worthless.

In Gilgal they sacrifice bulls.

    Indeed, their altars are like heaps in the furrows of the field.

12 Jacob fled into the country of Aram,

    and Israel served to get a wife,

    and for a wife he tended flocks and herds.

Obadiah 1:1-21

1:1 The vision of Obadiah. This is what Hashem Elohim says about Edom. We have heard news from Hashem, and an ambassador is sent among the nations, saying, “Arise, and let’s rise up against her in battle. 2 Behold, I have made you small among the nations. You are greatly despised. 3 The pride of your heart has deceived you, you who dwell in the clefts of the rock, whose habitation is high, who says in his heart, ‘Who will bring me down to the ground?’ 4 Though you mount on high as the eagle, and though your nest is set among the stars, I will bring you down from there,” says Yahweh. 5 “If thieves came to you, if robbers by night—oh, what disaster awaits you—wouldn’t they only steal until they had enough? If grape pickers came to you, wouldn’t they leave some gleaning grapes? 6 How Esau will be ransacked! How his hidden treasures are sought out! 7 All the men of your alliance have brought you on your way, even to the border. The men who were at peace with you have deceived you, and prevailed against you. Friends who eat your bread lay a snare under you. There is no understanding in him.”

8 “Won’t I in that day”, says Hashem, “destroy the wise men out of Edom, and understanding out of the mountain of Esau? 9 Your mighty men, Teman, will be dismayed, to the end that everyone may be cut off from the mountain of Esau by slaughter. 10 For the violence done to your brother Jacob, shame will cover you, and you will be cut off forever. 11 In the day that you stood on the other side, in the day that strangers carried away his substance, and foreigners entered into his gates, and cast lots for Jerusalem, even you were like one of them. 12 But don’t look down on your brother in the day of his disaster, and don’t rejoice over the children of Judah in the day of their destruction. Don’t speak proudly in the day of distress. 13 Don’t enter into the gate of my people in the day of their calamity. Don’t look down on their affliction in the day of their calamity, neither seize their wealth on the day of their calamity. 14 Don’t stand in the crossroads to cut off those of his who escape. Don’t deliver up those of his who remain in the day of distress. 15 For the day of Hashem is near all the nations! As you have done, it will be done to you. Your deeds will return upon your own head. 16 For as you have drunk on my holy mountain, so will all the nations drink continually. Yes, they will drink, swallow down, and will be as though they had not been. 17 But in Mount Zion, there will be those who escape, and it will be holy. The house of Jacob will possess their possessions. 18 The house of Jacob will be a fire, the house of Joseph a flame, and the house of Esau for stubble. They will burn among them, and devour them. There will not be any remaining to the house of Esau.” Indeed, Hashem has spoken.

19 Those of the South will possess the mountain of Esau, and those of the lowland, the Philistines. They will possess the field of Ephraim, and the field of Samaria. Benjamin will possess Gilead. 20 The captives of this army of the children of Israel, who are among the Canaanites, will possess even to Zarephath; and the captives of Jerusalem, who are in Sepharad, will possess the cities of the Negev. 21 Saviors will go up on Mount Zion to judge the mountains of Esau, and the kingdom will be Hashem’s.


My Thoughts:

Dreams in this reading are very important. An angel warns Joseph to take his family into Egypt to avoid being killed. And another angel comes to him other times to direct their paths. I don’t know if we take our dreams as seriously as people in Scripture. Maybe we should. They say it is important to write your dream down as soon as you wake up. To have a pad of paper and pen, right by your bedside. You can forget a dream within minutes of waking up. It is important we write down our dreams that we know mean something. Pray and ask Hashem what they meant and ask for Scripture that might reveal and confirm them. It just may be Hashem is trying to tell you something very valuable, maybe even life saving!


Have you ever had an angel speak to you in a dream? Or has another person ever given you a “message” in a dream? I believe we are in a time of a special release of angels -- especially if the Mashiach is returning soon. Pay attention to those dreams, and ask Hashem to interpret them for you. It may change your life!

Apostolic Scripture: Matthew 2:13-23

13 Now when they had departed, behold, an angel of Hashem appeared to Joseph in a dream, saying, “Arise and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and stay there until I tell you, for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.”

14 He arose and took the young child and his mother by night and departed into Egypt, 15 and was there until the death of Herod, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Hashem through the prophet, saying, “Out of Egypt I called my son.” (Hosea 11:1)

16 Then Herod, when he saw that he was mocked by the wise men, was exceedingly angry, and sent out and killed all the male children who were in Bethlehem and in all the surrounding countryside, from two years old and under, according to the exact time which he had learned from the wise men. 17 Then that which was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet was fulfilled, saying,

18 “A voice was heard in Ramah,

    lamentation, weeping and great mourning,

Rachel weeping for her children;

    she wouldn’t be comforted,

    because they are no more.” (Jeremiah 31:15)

19 But when Herod was dead, behold, an angel of Hashem appeared in a dream to Joseph in Egypt, saying, 20 “Arise and take the young child and his mother, and go into the land of Israel, for those who sought the young child’s life are dead.”

21 He arose and took the young child and his mother, and came into the land of Israel. 22 But when he heard that Archelaus was reigning over Judea in the place of his father, Herod, he was afraid to go there. Being warned in a dream, he withdrew into the region of Galilee, 23 and came and lived in a city called Nazareth; that it might be fulfilled which was spoken through the prophets that he will be called a Nazarene.

Friday, December 1, 2023

Vayishlach - Reading #6

Vayishlach, וַיִּשְׁל - And He Sent
Genesis 32:4-36:43
Reading #6 - Genesis 35:12–36:19

My Thoughts: 

Hashem is giving Jacob the Land. You would think that with the age of the writings of the Bible that this would prove that the Land of Israel belongs to the Jews. But for centuries, even thousands of years this Land has been the most highly contested on the planet. Everyday I try to pray that the Land will be given back to the People of Hashem (all of it) and that there would be shalom peace and safety in the Land. It’s a good prayer, would you pray it also? Remember, the Mashiach (whom I believe to be Yeshua) will be returning to the Land, to the Temple in Jerusalem. It all belongs to Hashem and He gave it to the Jewish people. His people. And to all of us who join hands with them we will be able to live there too!


Here’s my challenge today. We read in today’s reading that Rachel dies in childbirth. As we go through life we will have many family and friends who get pregnant. Make a commitment to pray for them on a regular basis. Even though childbirth is safer in our generation than ever before, there are still huge risks involved. Hashem hears our prayers and often answers them - so lift up anyone you know who is pregnant today for a safe and healthy pregnancy and delivery.

Reading #6 - Genesis 35:12–36:19

35:12 The land which I gave to Abraham and Isaac, I will give it to you, and to your offspring after you I will give the land.”

13 Elohim went up from him in the place where he spoke with him. 14 Jacob set up a pillar in the place where he spoke with him, a pillar of stone. He poured out a drink offering on it, and poured oil on it. 15 Jacob called the name of the place where Elohim spoke with him “Bethel”.

16 They traveled from Bethel. There was still some distance to come to Ephrath, and Rachel travailed. She had hard labor. 17 When she was in hard labor, the midwife said to her, “Don’t be afraid, for now you will have another son.”

18 As her soul was departing (for she died), she named him Benoni, but his father named him Benjamin. 19 Rachel died, and was buried on the way to Ephrath (also called Bethlehem). 20 Jacob set up a pillar on her grave. The same is the Pillar of Rachel’s grave to this day. 21 Israel traveled, and spread his tent beyond the tower of Eder. 22 While Israel lived in that land, Reuben went and lay with Bilhah, his father’s concubine, and Israel heard of it.

Now the sons of Jacob were twelve. 23 The sons of Leah: Reuben (Jacob’s firstborn), Simeon, Levi, Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun. 24 The sons of Rachel: Joseph and Benjamin. 25 The sons of Bilhah (Rachel’s servant): Dan and Naphtali. 26 The sons of Zilpah (Leah’s servant): Gad and Asher. These are the sons of Jacob, who were born to him in Paddan Aram. 27 Jacob came to Isaac his father, to Mamre, to Kiriath Arba (which is Hebron), where Abraham and Isaac lived as foreigners.

28 The days of Isaac were one hundred eighty years. 29 Isaac gave up the spirit and died, and was gathered to his people, old and full of days. Esau and Jacob, his sons, buried him.

36 Now this is the history of the generations of Esau (that is, Edom). 2 Esau took his wives from the daughters of Canaan: Adah the daughter of Elon, the Hittite; and Oholibamah the daughter of Anah, the daughter of Zibeon, the Hivite; 3 and Basemath, Ishmael’s daughter, sister of Nebaioth. 4 Adah bore to Esau Eliphaz. Basemath bore Reuel. 5 Oholibamah bore Jeush, Jalam, and Korah. These are the sons of Esau, who were born to him in the land of Canaan. 6 Esau took his wives, his sons, his daughters, and all the members of his household, with his livestock, all his animals, and all his possessions, which he had gathered in the land of Canaan, and went into a land away from his brother Jacob. 7 For their substance was too great for them to dwell together, and the land of their travels couldn’t bear them because of their livestock. 8 Esau lived in the hill country of Seir. Esau is Edom.

9 This is the history of the generations of Esau the father of the Edomites in the hill country of Seir: 10 these are the names of Esau’s sons: Eliphaz, the son of Adah, the wife of Esau; and Reuel, the son of Basemath, the wife of Esau. 11 The sons of Eliphaz were Teman, Omar, Zepho, and Gatam, and Kenaz. 12 Timna was concubine to Eliphaz, Esau’s son; and she bore to Eliphaz Amalek. These are the descendants of Adah, Esau’s wife. 13 These are the sons of Reuel: Nahath, Zerah, Shammah, and Mizzah. These were the descendants of Basemath, Esau’s wife. 14 These were the sons of Oholibamah, the daughter of Anah, the daughter of Zibeon, Esau’s wife: she bore to Esau Jeush, Jalam, and Korah.

15 These are the chiefs of the sons of Esau: the sons of Eliphaz the firstborn of Esau: chief Teman, chief Omar, chief Zepho, chief Kenaz, 16 chief Korah, chief Gatam, chief Amalek. These are the chiefs who came of Eliphaz in the land of Edom. These are the sons of Adah. 17 These are the sons of Reuel, Esau’s son: chief Nahath, chief Zerah, chief Shammah, chief Mizzah. These are the chiefs who came of Reuel in the land of Edom. These are the sons of Basemath, Esau’s wife. 18 These are the sons of Oholibamah, Esau’s wife: chief Jeush, chief Jalam, chief Korah. These are the chiefs who came of Oholibamah the daughter of Anah, Esau’s wife. 19 These are the sons of Esau (that is, Edom), and these are their chiefs.

Thursday, November 30, 2023

Vayishlach - Reading #5

Vayishlach, וַיִּשְׁל - And He Sent

Genesis 32:4-36:43

Reading #5 - Genesis 34:1–35:11

My Thoughts: 

Dinah seems to be the only sister mentioned of Jacob’s sons. Usually when that happens the “big” brothers will really defend their “little” sister. They were not happy at all that Shechem took her to his home and slept with her. Neither was Jacob. They devised a plan to kill Shechem and all the men. But, what I find to be interesting in today’s reading is that in verse 3 “His soul joined to Dinah”. 

I have heard before in religious circles that when a man sleeps with a woman they are spiritually “joined” before Hashem. Back in this time there was not a formal marriage, you simply announced to be married and then slept together. Remember that Elohim says in Genesis 2:24 “Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” In the eyes of Hashem when a man and wife have sex, they become one. Their souls “join” together. That is the way Hashem created us. Should we be having sex outside of marriage, if indeed our “souls join”?


For those of you who have had sex outside of marriage, you may want to repent today -- and break “soul ties” with that person. I have been to religious conferences where they dealt solely with this and would pray special prayers. It is serious to be tied to someone this way and if you haven’t gone to Hashem and repented, I urge you to do so today.

Reading #5 - Genesis 34:1–35:11

34:1 Dinah, the daughter of Leah, whom she bore to Jacob, went out to see the daughters of the land. 2 Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, the prince of the land, saw her. He took her, lay with her, and humbled her. 3 His soul joined to Dinah, the daughter of Jacob, and he loved the young lady, and spoke kindly to the young lady. 4 Shechem spoke to his father, Hamor, saying, “Get me this young lady as a wife.”

5 Now Jacob heard that he had defiled Dinah, his daughter; and his sons were with his livestock in the field. Jacob held his peace until they came. 6 Hamor the father of Shechem went out to Jacob to talk with him. 7 The sons of Jacob came in from the field when they heard it. The men were grieved, and they were very angry, because he had done folly in Israel in lying with Jacob’s daughter, a thing that ought not to be done. 8 Hamor talked with them, saying, “The soul of my son, Shechem, longs for your daughter. Please give her to him as a wife. 9 Make marriages with us. Give your daughters to us, and take our daughters for yourselves. 10 You shall dwell with us, and the land will be before you. Live and trade in it, and get possessions in it.”

11 Shechem said to her father and to her brothers, “Let me find favor in your eyes, and whatever you will tell me I will give. 12 Ask me a great amount for a dowry, and I will give whatever you ask of me, but give me the young lady as a wife.”

13 The sons of Jacob answered Shechem and Hamor his father with deceit when they spoke, because he had defiled Dinah their sister, 14 and said to them, “We can’t do this thing, to give our sister to one who is uncircumcised; for that is a reproach to us. 15 Only on this condition will we consent to you. If you will be as we are, that every male of you be circumcised, 16 then will we give our daughters to you; and we will take your daughters to us, and we will dwell with you, and we will become one people. 17 But if you will not listen to us and be circumcised, then we will take our sister, and we will be gone.”

18 Their words pleased Hamor and Shechem, Hamor’s son. 19 The young man didn’t wait to do this thing, because he had delight in Jacob’s daughter, and he was honored above all the house of his father. 20 Hamor and Shechem, his son, came to the gate of their city, and talked with the men of their city, saying, 21 “These men are peaceful with us. Therefore let them live in the land and trade in it. For behold, the land is large enough for them. Let’s take their daughters to us for wives, and let’s give them our daughters. 22 Only on this condition will the men consent to us to live with us, to become one people, if every male among us is circumcised, as they are circumcised. 23 Won’t their livestock and their possessions and all their animals be ours? Only let’s give our consent to them, and they will dwell with us.”

24 All who went out of the gate of his city listened to Hamor, and to Shechem his son; and every male was circumcised, all who went out of the gate of his city. 25 On the third day, when they were sore, two of Jacob’s sons, Simeon and Levi, Dinah’s brothers, each took his sword, came upon the unsuspecting city, and killed all the males. 26 They killed Hamor and Shechem, his son, with the edge of the sword, and took Dinah out of Shechem’s house, and went away. 27 Jacob’s sons came on the dead, and plundered the city, because they had defiled their sister. 28 They took their flocks, their herds, their donkeys, that which was in the city, that which was in the field, 29 and all their wealth. They took captive all their little ones and their wives, and took as plunder everything that was in the house. 30 Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, “You have troubled me, to make me odious to the inhabitants of the land, among the Canaanites and the Perizzites. I am few in number. They will gather themselves together against me and strike me, and I will be destroyed, I and my house.”

31 They said, “Should he deal with our sister as with a prostitute?”

35 Elohim said to Jacob, “Arise, go up to Bethel, and live there. Make there an altar to Elohim, who appeared to you when you fled from the face of Esau your brother.”

2 Then Jacob said to his household, and to all who were with him, “Put away the foreign gods that are among you, purify yourselves, change your garments. 3 Let’s arise, and go up to Bethel. I will make there an altar to Elohim, who answered me in the day of my distress, and was with me on the way which I went.”

4 They gave to Jacob all the foreign gods which were in their hands, and the rings which were in their ears; and Jacob hid them under the oak which was by Shechem. 5 They traveled, and a terror of Elohim was on the cities that were around them, and they didn’t pursue the sons of Jacob. 6 So Jacob came to Luz (that is, Bethel), which is in the land of Canaan, he and all the people who were with him. 7 He built an altar there, and called the place El Beth El; because there Elohim was revealed to him, when he fled from the face of his brother. 8 Deborah, Rebekah’s nurse, died, and she was buried below Bethel under the oak; and its name was called Allon Bacuth.

9  Elohim appeared to Jacob again, when he came from Paddan Aram, and blessed him. 10 Elohim said to him, “Your name is Jacob. Your name shall not be Jacob any more, but your name will be Israel.” He named him Israel. 11 Elohim said to him, “I am Elohim Almighty. Be fruitful and multiply. A nation and a company of nations will be from you, and kings will come out of your body.