This week's Torah Portion: 



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וַיִּגַּשׁ אֵלָיו יְהוּדָה וַיֹּאמֶר בִּי אֲדֹנִי יְדַבֶּר־נָא עַבְדְּךָ דָבָר בְּאָזְנֵי אֲדֹנִי וְאַל־יִחַר אַפְּךָ בְּעַבְדֶּךָ כִּי כָמֹוךָ כְּפַרְעֹֽה

vayigash elayv y'hudah vayomer bi adoni y'daber-na av'd'kha davar b'atzney adoni v'al-yichar ap'kha b'avdekha ki chamokha c'phar'oh

"Then Y'hudah approached Yosef and said, "Please, my lord! Let your servant say something to you privately; and don't be angry with your servant, for you are like Pharaoh himself."

This week’s parashah contains a very significant “remez” (hint) about the current situation facing the Nation of Isra’el today, plus the haftarah portion itself conveys a very important message that is pertinent to both the Jewish People and the Church. Accordingly, we shall examine both of the passages during this commentary.

Up to this point, Yosef (Joseph) had remained unknown to his brothers. The Spirit of the Holy One was guiding him as he put his brothers through various tests of integrity and humility. Although at times it seemed rather cruel to treat them with such harshness, in fact, this was the crucible that would serve to break them down. They needed to learn a very valuable lesson, one that would transform them into the God-ordained family that they needed to be. To be sure, if Yosef’s brothers failed to learn how to put off hate, jealousy, bitter-ness, and resentment, countless more unnecessary suffering might have taken place, and their father Isra’el would have gone to his grave with a grieving soul.

Yosef has orchestrated a scenario by which the brothers have reached a position of “checkmate” so to say: if they allow the “guilty” Binyamin to remain with Yosef, their father will surely die; if they attempt to defy Yosef by taking Binyamin back to their father, they all might die. Whether or not Yosef, the brothers or Binyamin realized it, HaShem had cornered them and now a reckoning must take place! The guilty brothers must come to grips with the sibling they abandoned long ago.
— Parashat Vayigash