Torah Study

sefer torahWeekly Torah Study is Saturday morning at 9. We meet in the Room 202 of Temple Brith Kodesh (enter by Door A).  We decide year by year how we’ll approach the weekly portion.  Last year we used the weekly d’var Torah from Rabbi Jonathan Sacks as a jumping off point.  This year, we’re going to consider each parsha from a Mussar perspective.  Each week an email is sent out (usually on Thursday) to anyone who may be interested.  You’re welcome on Saturday, whether or not you got the email or had time to read it.  Discussions are generally lively.

Parshat Toldot

Isaac feeling the hands of Jacob on his deathbed.

Bereishit 25:27-28
When the boys grew up, Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the outdoors; but Jacob was a mild man who stayed in camp. Issac favored Esau because he had a taste for game; but Rebekah favored Jacob.

This can be read as a difference in parental preference. What are your thoughts and experience about parents having favorite children?

Another reading based on the structure of the statement is that Issac’s love was conditional — “for the game that he brought him” — while Rebecca’s love of Jacob was unconditional. What about Issac and Rebecca’s personality might lead them to express love differently?

Esau takes on a gendered role and identity consistent with bearing the birthright in a patriarchal system: He is a hunter, ruddy and hairy; he is outwardly strong, representing gevurah. In contrast, Jacob is depicted as a quiet tent-dweller, content with domestic life: a mama’s boy. We will quickly see that these characterizations are superficial. Esau is shallow, while the simple Jacob is both cunning and determined. Might this also be speaking to cultural perceptions shared in 21st century America about strength? Or about the deceptiveness of appearances?

Bereishit 25:29-35
And Jacob prepared a stew and Esau came from the field, and he was famished. And Esau said to Jacob, “Let me gulp down some of this red red stuff, for I am famished.” Therefore is his name called Edom. And Jacob said, “Sell now your birthright to me.” And Esau said, “Look, I am at the point of death, so why do I
need a birthright?” And Jacob said, “Swear to me now,” and he swore to him, and he sold his birthright to Jacob. then Jacob gave Esau bread and lentil stew, and he ate and he drank and he rose and he went off, and Esau spurned the birthright.

If Esau puts such little value on his birthright, is deception and untruth acceptable to rescue the birthright?

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Torah Study Archive

Thumb Title
Isaac feeling the hands of Jacob on his deathbed.
November 16, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Sarah and Eliezer at the well
November 9, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Welcome mat
November 2, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Lech Lecha
October 26, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Beatuiful sukkah
October 5, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Mother donkey and foal
August 31, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Judge Judy receiving a file from her bailiff
August 24, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Family harvesting fruit
August 17, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
What does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness, and walk humbly with your God? Micha 6:8
August 10, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
The Golden Calf
August 3, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
The fall of the second temple
July 27, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
The Israelites Encamped at Mt. Sinai
July 20, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Daughters of Zelophead
July 13, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Man riding a donkey toward some mountains
July 7, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Moses striking the rock
June 29, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
desert
June 23, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
grasshopper
June 15, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
gossip
June 9, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Samson slayed 1000 men
June 1, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
woman begging
May 18, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Leaving the corners of the field
May 11, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
You should be holy, for I, the Lord Your God, am holy. Leviticus 19: 2
May 4, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
isolated figure
April 28, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Egg packaging with kosher label
April 21, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Priest at the altar
April 13, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Custom made jacket marked with tailor's chalk and basting
April 6, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Calm path with side-lighting
March 31, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
The Mishkan
March 26, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
The High Priest
March 10, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Crossing the Reed Sea
February 9, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
The second plague of Egypt
February 2, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Parshat vaera
January 26, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Moses and the daughters of Midian
January 20, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Jacob blessing Joseph's sons
January 12, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Joseph reveals himself to his brothers
January 5, 2017 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Joseph interprets Pharoh's dream
December 29, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Joseph's coat being shown to Jacob
December 22, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Jacob meets Esau
December 15, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Jacob deceives Isaac
December 8, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Burial of Sarah
November 25, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Abraham's tent
November 18, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Lech Lecha--Going out
November 16, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
The drunkenness of Noah
November 3, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Jealousy, by Edvard Munch
October 27, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Guitar at sunrise
October 13, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
The Israelites ready to cross into the promised land
October 5, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Sunset over a valley with a meandering river
September 29, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
birch bark showing the shape of a heart
September 14, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Your word is hour bond, so take them seriously
August 17, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
elderly man on a scooter
August 17, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
flamingo amongst swans
July 7, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
Scary giant
June 30, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study
sparrow pelted by snow
June 30, 2016 by Office
Filed as: Torah Study