History of Yackov
Yackov dwelt in the land of his father, in Canaan.
In Contrast to Eisav
After describing the genealogy of Eisav very briefly since they were not important enough to expand open their colonization, wars and conquest of the Chori, the Torah provides the history of Yackov in great detail, since they are important by Hashem. This is similar to the ten generations between Adam and Noach and between Noach and Avraham. They were described very briefly until Noach and Avraham were reached and expanded upon in great detail. It is comparable to gem lost in the sand, where one sifts through the sand until he finds the gem and then casts the pebbles from his hand leaving only the gem. Describing the generations of Yackov, indicates that Esev and his chieftains were considered irrelevant.
Yosef the Generations of Yackov
When Yackov saw all the chieftains of Esov he wondered how they could be conquered. However his descendant Yosef was like a flame who could destroy and consume them all. This is comparable to a flax dealer entered a town with his camels laden with flax. The blacksmith wondered where all the flax would go. A clever person replied that a single spark from his bellows could burn it all. Also Yosef was one who triggered the series of events that led to their wandering and descent to Egypt. Additionally Yackov had served Lavan only for Rachel and Yosef was her son. Yosefs features also resembled Yackov and many events that occurred to Yackov occurred to Yosef. Both were hated and both had siblings that tried to kill them.
Dreams of Yosef
When Yosef was seventeen years old and would behaved childishly, fixing his hair and touching up his eyes so that he would appear handsome. He served as a shepherd along with his brothers watching the flocks. He was especially friendly to the the sons of Bilhah and Zilpah because the other brothers would demean them. Yosef would bring evil tales of his brothers, the sons of Leah, to Yackov. He would tell tales of gossip and slander about the wrong they did but was latter punished for each. He said how they ate limbs from living animals, yet when he was sold the brothers slaughtered a kid and did not eat it alive. He accused them of demeaning the sons of the handmaids by calling them slaves and as a result was himself later sold as a slave. He said they were suspected of impure relationships and therefore later had to deal with Potifars wife.
Yockov loved Yosef more then all his sons, since he was born in his old age, and since he resembled his facial features. Yackov also loved him since Yosef was wise and he was able to give over to him all that he had learned from Shem and Ever. He made a fine woolen striped coat for him. Additionally the stripes alluded to the many troubles that would befall Yosef of being sold Potifar, the merchants, the Ishmaelites and to the Midianites.
Upon seeing this extra love, the brothers began hating Yosef and they could not speak with him peacefully. Although this was derogatory for them it also showed their praise that they did not say one thing with their mouth and think differently in their heart.
Yosef had a dream where he was binding sheaves of wheat along with his brothers in the midst of a field. Suddenly his sheaf arose and stood upright and remained standing in its place, the sheaves of the brothers encircled it and bowed down to it. Yosef related the dream to his brothers and they continued to hate him, for his dreams and words of gossip against them, saying he wished to rule over and govern them.
Yosef had another dream where the sun, moon and eleven stars were prostrating themselves to him. He related it to his brothers and later repeated it to his father as his brothers sood in front of him. Yackov rebuked him for bringing hatred upon himself by trying to claim that He, his mother and brothers will come and prostrate themselves to him. Yackov tired to discredit the dream to remove the envy from the brothers hearts by pointing out that Yosef's mother Rachel had already died so how could she bow to him and just like that was not possible so too the rest of the dream must be meaningless. In truth it was referring to Bilah who raised Yosef as if she was his mother. Also every dream must contain some falsehood. His brothers envied Yosef, but Yackov awaited the matter, looking forward in expectation to see when it would be fulfilled.
The brothers went to pasture their father's flocks in Shechem. Yackov requested from Yosef to check up on the welfare of his brothers and the flocks. When Yosef willingly agreed, Yackov sent him from the valley of Chevron.
When Yosef arrived at Shechem, as he strayed in the fields he was approached by a man he asked him what he searched for. When Yosef replied that he sought his brothers, asking where they were pasturing, the man replied that they had traveled from there but had overheard discuss going to Dothan. Yosef went after his brothers, and found them in Dothan.
When the brothers saw Yosef approaching from far they said one to the other, "Behold, that dreamer is coming". They plotted against him to put him to death, by casting him into one of the pits and would see what would become of his dreams. They could later claim that a wild beast devoured him.
Intervention of Reuvain
When Reuvain heard this he objected saying they should not shed blood by killing him themselves.Instead they should cast Yosef into a desert pit. Thus Reuvain saved him from their hands, planing to later return Yosef to his father.
Assault on Yosef
When Yosef reached his brothers, they stripped him of his special robe. They then took Yosef and cast him into an empty pit that had no water in it. The brothers then sat down to eat a meal.
Selling of Yosef
They lifted their eyes and saw a caravan of Yishmoelim was coming from Gilead, their camels were carrying spices, balm, and lotus, on route to Egypt. Yehuda said to the brothers what gain would they have if they killed Yosef and covered up his blood. Instead they could sell him to the Yishmoelim. They would also gain that their own hands would not harm their brother who was their flesh. The brothers agreed.
A caravan of Midianite merchants, passed by and Yosef from the pit, They sold him to the Yishmoelim for twenty silver coins. The Yishmoelim brought Yosef to Egypt.
The sale of Yosef and the suffering it brought upon Yackov was because had had tried to dwell in tranquility. However the righteous should be satisfied with their reward in the World to Come and should not seek to also dwell in tranquility in this World.
When Reuvain returned to the pit and Yosef was not there, he tore his garments. He returned to his brothers saying the boy was gone and now where would he go. The brothers took Yosef's coat, they slaughtered a baby goat and dipped the coat in the blood. They then sent the special coat to their father telling him they found it and asking him if he recognized it as his son's coat or not. When Yackov recognized it he said it was his son's coat and a wild beast had devoured him; Yosef had surely been torn up. Yackov tore his garments and put sackcloth on his waist. He mourned his son for many days. All his sons and daughters tried to console him, but he refused to be consoled. He said he will descend on account of his son as a mourner to the grave". Yackov wept for him.
Incident of Yehuda
House of Potifar
The Midianites sold Yosef to Egypt, to Potiphar, Pharaoh's chamberlain, chief of the slaughterers.
Test of Yosef
The Royal Baker & Cupbearer
- ^ a b c d Rashi Shemos 37:1
- ^ Baal Haturim Berashis 6:1
- ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Rashi Shemos 37:2
- ^ a b c d e Rashi Shemos 37:3
- ^ a b Rashi Shemos 37:4
- ^ a b c Rashi Shemos 37:7
- ^ Rashi Shemos 37:8
- ^ a b c d e f g Rashi Berashis 37:10
- ^ Rashi Berashis 37:11