The Guttenberg Press: Toldot

Rabbi Shaye Guttenberg, Head of School

The story of Yitzchak giving out the brachot in this week’s Parsha is not only a chilling story to read, but one that usually leaves the reader with more questions than answers. Interestingly, in both conversations, between Yitzchak and Esav and Yitzchak and Esav, the Torah “borrows” language from a previous story.  

Thoughts to ponder: Where have you heard this language before and what are the possible connections?

Yitzchak speaking to Esav: 27:1

וַיְהִי֙ כִּֽי־זָקֵ֣ן יִצְחָ֔ק וַתִּכְהֶ֥יןָ עֵינָ֖יו מֵרְאֹ֑ת וַיִּקְרָ֞א אֶת־עֵשָׂ֣ו ׀ בְּנ֣וֹ הַגָּדֹ֗ל וַיֹּ֤אמֶר אֵלָיו֙ בְּנִ֔י וַיֹּ֥אמֶר אֵלָ֖יו הִנֵּֽנִי׃

When Isaac was old and his eyes were too dim to see, he called his older son Esau and said to him, “My son.” He answered, “Here I am.”  


Yitzchak speaking to Yaakov:  27:18

וַיָּבֹ֥א אֶל־אָבִ֖יו וַיֹּ֣אמֶר אָבִ֑י וַיֹּ֣אמֶר הִנֶּ֔נִּי מִ֥י אַתָּ֖ה בְּנִֽי׃

He went to his father and said, “Father.” And he said, “Here I am, Who are you, my son?”