Here's a great tip:
Enter your email address and we'll send you our weekly magazine by email with fresh, exciting and thoughtful content that will enrich your inbox and your life, week after week. And it's free.
Oh, and don't forget to like our facebook page too!
Printed from chabad.org
All Departments
Jewish Holidays
TheRebbe.org
Jewish.TV - Video
Jewish Audio
News
Kabbalah Online
JewishWoman.org
Kids Zone
Contact Us
Visit us on Facebook

Vayigash in a Nutshell

Vayigash in a Nutshell

Genesis 44:18–47:27

E-mail

Judah approaches Joseph to plead for the release of Benjamin, offering himself as a slave to the Egyptian ruler in Benjamin’s stead. Upon witnessing his brothers’ loyalty to one another, Joseph reveals his identity to them. “I am Joseph,” he declares. “Is my father still alive?”

The brothers are overcome by shame and remorse, but Joseph comforts them. “It was not you who sent me here,” he says to them, “but G‑d. It has all been ordained from Above to save us, and the entire region, from famine.”

The brothers rush back to Canaan with the news. Jacob comes to Egypt with his sons and their families—seventy souls in all—and is reunited with his beloved son after 22 years. On his way to Egypt he receives the divine promise: “Fear not to go down to Egypt; for I will there make of you a great nation. I will go down with you into Egypt, and I will also surely bring you up again.”

Joseph gathers the wealth of Egypt by selling food and seed during the famine. Pharaoh gives Jacob’s family the fertile county of Goshen to settle, and the children of Israel prosper in their Egyptian exile.

© Copyright, all rights reserved. If you enjoyed this article, we encourage you to distribute it further, provided that you comply with Chabad.org's copyright policy.
E-mail
1000 characters remaining
Email me when new comments are posted.
Sort By:
Discussion (11)
December 7, 2013
God Did It!
Joseph tells his brothers that it was God, not they, who sent him to Egypt for the purpose of saving folks from famine. This raises several questions: How did Joseph know that this was God's plan? If it really was God's plan, couldn't He have found a simpler one? What becomes of the brothers' free will? Have they no responsibility then for their dastardly deed?
Anonymous
Dallas, TX
December 1, 2013
Judas harsh speech to Joseph
Yrachmiel,
There is a wonderful article titled "Showdown" from the Zohar section of parshah Vayigash at Kabbalah Online; it plainly explains Judah's boldness. L'Chaim!

Baruch Shem, Baruch Hu
Dwight D. Williams
Garland, TX
December 20, 2012
Judas harsh speech to Joseph
Why did Judah speak so harshly. Why wash't he more afraid?
Yrachmiel Fisher
Kings Park, Y
December 20, 2012
Why Yosef did not communicate with his father.
From the text in this and the previous 3 parshiot there are several clues. First, at age 17 he had just been reprimanded by his father who then sent him off alone to one of the most dangerous places to check how his 10 hulking brothers are doing! No sooner than he arrives they strip him off his coat and throw him in a pit. He is then kidnapped by Midianites and sold off in Egypt. What was he thinking? That his father and brothers exiled him thinking he wanted to be leader of the tribe. His name for Menashe - he thanks G-d for helping him to forget ALL his father's House. He weeps uncontrollably when he sees his father, regretting the years he ignored him. He revealed himself when he learned from Yehuda for the first time that his father thought he was dead! His first words were "Is my father still alive?" He knew his father was alive- his brothers had told him so! He is saying my father who loved me is still alive!
Ephraim Jonah
Jerusalem, Israel
December 18, 2012
Contact
Perhaps Joseph feared for his life if he were to return to see his father (if that were even possible as a slave or an advisor to a king). What then was his duty: to his father at the risk of his life, or to his master with the ability to spare the lives of many innocent Egyptians?
Carol
Louisville, KY
January 16, 2012
my mistake
It has been pointed out to me that it is Egypt that got rich during the famine, ie. not Joseph's own wealth. My appologies.
So much to learn, so much to learn...
Julie
Durham, UK
January 15, 2012
To Uri, Mexico
Nice point. You could take it further, because Yosef in Egypt provided sustenance back to his family in Israel, just like much money and resources from America have gone into supporting Israel.

However, before he dies Yosef has his brothers swear to bury him in Israel, since that is after all a Jew's rightful place.
Rabbi Zalman Nelson
Tsfat, Israel
December 30, 2011
The answer to why did Joseph made his father suffer all those years by not visiting him is a clear example of most Jews who do well in the exile and forget about Israel
uri
mexico, mexico
December 28, 2011
contact
In all those years Joseph let his father suffer at not knowing his fate. Didn't his conscience bother him?
Anonymous
ALBANY , NY
December 28, 2011
getting rich on famine?
I am shocked that Joseph gets rich by selling food during a famine. That seems inhuman to me. What is this all about?
Julie
Durham, UK
Show all comments
This page in other languages