VAYESHEV (and he settled)


Genesis 37:1 And Jacob lived in the land, where his father was a stranger in the land of Canaan. C-MATS

Question: Where did Jacob pasture his flocks? Their flocks and herds they fed daily in Shechem, for there was in those days good and fat pasture, but Jacob and his sons and their entire household dwelt in the valley of Hebron next to Isaac. (Jasher)

Genesis 37:2 These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph being seventeen years old was feeding the flock with אֹת־ his brothers; and the boy was with אֹת־ the sons of Bilhah וְאֹת־ and with the sons of Zilpah, his father’s wives: and brought Joseph אֹת־ their evil report to his father. C-MATS

Question: When did this incident happen? This incident occurred nine years after Jacob returned home. Jacob was 108 years old. Isaac was 168 years old and he lived for another 12 years. Joseph was 17 years old.

Question: Why were Bilhah and Zilpah called “his father’s wives”? Rachel and Leah were both dead leaving only Bilhah and Zilpah.

Question: Was the evil report true that Joseph brought his father? Joseph would bring his father Jacob unfavorable reports about his brothers’ apparent misbehavior. But some teach us that the brothers were really innocent and Joseph had misinterpreted what he saw. His brothers came to resent him for the things he told their father. Even though Joseph had only the best of intentions, he was wrong — he should have judged his brothers more favorably. When people give each other the benefit of the doubt, everyone gets along much better.