Tuesday, December 15, 2015

sometimes the good part of the story is not so good

Generally when a parsha opens with the word “haya” it means something good is going to happen, but “va’yehi” portends bad news (see Megillah 10).  “Va’yehi miketz she’nasayim yamim…”  Yosef is about to get out of prison and rise to become the second in command of Egypt.  Why does our parsha open with the word “va’yehi?”  This is the good part of the story!

One of the answers the Ohr HaChaim gives is that while in the short term things are about to get much better for Yosef, from the perspective of Jewish history, things are about to start going downhill.  Yosef’s rise coincides with a famine that will cause his brothers to come down to Egypt (never mind the pain the famine itself must have caused) and cause his father Ya’akov to enter a galus that will last centuries. 
So often we judge events based only on their immediate effect upon ourselves.  That’s human nature.  The Torah, however, takes a longer view and broader view of things.

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