Friday, December 14, 2007

Parshas Vayigash - "Name That Tune"

Quickie/ Funfact - "And Yisrael settled in the Land of Mitzraim in the land of Goshen". Obviously Yaakov was going to be in Mitzraim why do we need this to be repeated?

Rabbi Moshe Feinstein answers that while he was in "gaalus", in Mitzraim, Yaakov wanted to make sure that his family would not mingle with the Egyptians. He realized that as a result of mingling the "Jewish" cause would be lost. Therefore while he had to be in Mitzraim, he made sure to settle in Goshen, an alienated place.

Earlier this week I was talking to my good friend R' Moshe Yosef Schertz Shlit"a and this is what came out of our conversation…

At the end of last week's Parsha the Torah left off discussing the tragic discovery of a royal goblet in the sack of Binyamin. Yosef, knowing well that Binyamin was his brother, takes Binyamin prisoner because of "his" criminal act. At the beginning of this week's Parsha, Yehuda approaches Pharoah with a request; that Binyamin be left unharmed and returned back to his family.

It seems however that Yehuda makes this request not only for the good of Binyamin and Yaakov but in fact to salvage his own Olam Haba.

Fore it was written in (43:8-9), "…send the lad with me, and let us arise and go, so we will lie and we will not die, neither we nor you nor our children. I will guarantee him; of my own hand and you can demand him. If I do not bring him back to you…then I will have sinned to you for all time."

Rashi commenting on the words, "I will have sinned to you for all time" says, that Yehuda was willing to forfeit his "Olam Haba".

(44:18) "Vayigash Eilav Yehuda, Bi Adoni…" "Then Yehuda approached him and said, if you please my lord…."

The (Gr"a) Vilna Gaon, commenting on this first Pasuk of Parshas Vayigash makes a very interesting observation. He says that Yehuda's motives can be detected through the cantillation notes of the pasuk itself!

"Kadmah VeAzlah Revii Zarkah Munach Segol"

"Got up and went, the fourth (Yehuda) who threw away rest eternal"

Yehuda went to save the life of his brother because he knew that if he did not return Binyamin safely; his Eternal life would be in permanent jeopardy.

In Parshas Lech Lecha we discussed what makes our stay in Olam Haba most enjoyable. The Slonimer Rav says that, yes, it is true, we will all merit to get Olam Haba but the way that we anticipate it while alive is what will make it most enjoyable

Yehuda's wishes and motives were not uncanny or selfish but in fact they were correct and admirable. So much so, that they are hinted to in the way that we sing the beginning of the Parsha.


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