Together We Honor G-d and Torah, Promote Spiritual Growth and Strengthen Our Community
Torah Portion of the Week
Week of Dec. 13-14, 2013
The parasha, Torah portion, opens with Jacob on his deathbed 17 years after arriving
in Egypt. Jacob blesses Joseph's two sons, Manasseh (Menashe) and Ephraim (to this
day it is a tradition to bless our sons every Shabbat evening with the blessing,
"May the Almighty make you like Ephraim and Manasseh" -- they grew up in the Diaspora
amongst foreign influences and still remained devoted to the Torah. The Shabbat evening
blessing for girls is "to be like Sarah, Rivka, Rachel and Leah.") He then individually
blesses each of his sons. The blessings are prophetic and give reproof, where necessary.
A large retinue from Pharaoh's court accompanies the family to Hebron to bury Jacob
in the Ma'arat Hamachpela, the burial cave purchased by Abraham. The Torah portion
ends with the death of Joseph and his binding the Israelites to bring his remains
with them for burial when they are redeemed from slavery and go to the land of Israel.
Thus ends the book of Genesis!