VAYECHI (and he lived)

Genesis 47:28 And Jacob lived in the land of Egypt 17 years: so the number of Jacob’s years was 147 years. C-MATS

Question: Why did Jacob continue to live in Egypt? Although Jacob’s original intention had been to live in Egypt only until the end of the famine, יהוה commanded him to remain here for the rest of his life. (Chumash)

Question: Were these years in Egypt good for Jacob? These seventeen years were the best years of his life — years of prosperity, goodness and peace; his other 130 years were filled with toil and pain. (Chumash)

Question: How can it be that our father Jacob, the greatest of the Patriarchs, lived the best years of his life in pagan Egypt? וְאֶת־ And he (Jacob) sent Judah before him to Joseph to point out the way to Goshen; and they came into the land of Goshen. (Genesis 46:28). This was to establish a house of learning, where the sons of Jacob would study Torah. When one studies Torah, one is brought close to יהוה, so that even in Egypt one can live a true “life”. Nevertheless, in the very next verses we read how Jacob entreats Joseph: “Carry me out of Egypt!” (Genesis 47:30) So great is his urgency that he is not content with an agreement or promise on Joseph’s part, but insists that his son take a solemn oath to fulfill his request. We might find ourselves living a most ideal life in exile-a life of material comfort and spiritual fulfillment, a life of Torah, and charitable works. Nevertheless, exile is not our home, so we constantly plead to יהוה to “carry us out of Egypt”. (Chumash)

#12 VAYECHI