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The Torah Learning Library of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah

Category: Vayigash

The Demands and Limits of Honoring Your Parents

by Rabbi Haggai ResnikoffPosted on September 9, 2016

The following sources relate to the story of Joseph in Parashat Vayigash, and compare his actions to what we know about the mitzvah of honoring one’s parents. Ramban, Bereshit, ch. 42 יש לתמוה אחר שעמד יוסף במצרים ימים רבים והיה פקיד ונגיד בבית שר גדול במצרים, איך לא שלח כתב אחד לאביו להודיעו ולנחמו, כי Continue Reading »

The Importance of Tears

by Rabbi Avi WeissPosted on May 25, 2016

When Yaakov (Jacob) meets his son Yosef (Joseph) after seventeen years of separation the Torah states, “And he wept on his neck” (Genesis 46:29). Since the sentence speaks of only one individual crying, “and he wept,” who is the Torah referring to? Was it Yaakov or was it Yosef who cried? One could argue that Continue Reading »

“People Talking Without Speaking”

by Rabbi Dov LinzerPosted on December 17, 2015

Silence is the last word one would use to characterize the climax of the story of Yosef and his brothers. Indeed, parashat Vayigash opens with Yehudah’s heartfelt and impassioned plea to Yosef to free Binyamin. These words are so powerful in conveying Yehudah’s unflinching loyalty to Binyamin and the anguish of his father Yaakov that Yosef Continue Reading »

The Buck Stops Here

by Rabbi Dov LinzerPosted on December 21, 2012

The Yosef narrative of the last few parshiyot – the longest narrative of Breishit – has been focusing, not surprisingly, on the character of Yosef.  But also central to this story is the person of Yehudah, and his growing into the role of a leader. Although he failed to stop the selling of Yosef, and although he Continue Reading »

Faith in God and Personal Responsibility

by Rabbi Dov LinzerPosted on December 10, 2010

We saw previously that Yehudah and Reuven, while both taking initiative to deal with crisis situations, exhibited very different leadership styles. While Reuven was rash and impetuous, Yehudah thought things through carefully, and when he took on a responsibility, his word was his bond, and he would see the situation through to its resolution. This trait Continue Reading »

Faith in God, Not Playing God

by Rabbi Dov LinzerPosted on December 15, 1997

Parsha Vayigash opens with the climactic moment in the Joseph saga. After having forced his brothers to bring down Benjamin by holding Simeon captive, Joseph plants his silver chalice in Benjamin’s bags and demands that Benjamin remain in Egypt as his slave. This parsha opens with Judah’s heartfelt entreaty to Joseph to spare Benjamin’s life Continue Reading »