Vayishlach (ןישלח)- And He Sent- Audio Podcast December, 17, 2022

B'reisheet - 2022-2023  •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  2:48:11
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This Torah Portion:
Gen 32:3 - 36:43


In the previous Torah portions we talked about God calling Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to make a covenant with them
We also heard how God also uses his daughters: Sarah - Abraham’s wife, Rebekak - Isaac’s wife
We have been talking about how the whole book of the Bible is about the generations that belong to the Lord
We talked about the Generations coming from Esau and how the colour red seems to be a tendency for those who come from him- an attraction to blood
Esau has grown bitter and desires to kill Jacob. Jacob has received Isaac’s blessing, and is advised to leave, and to to Laban’s house
We also talked about Isaac’s descendant: Jacob, and how God revealed Himself to him, and changed his name
Jacob left his parents to begin a personal exile that, unknown to him at the time, this exile will include 20 years in the home of Laban
Jacob spent 14 years at the academy of Shem and Eber, before going to Haran
Jacob needed to study the Torah with Shem and Eber to survive the environment, and learned from those who had experience with corrupted environments.
We talked about Jacob coming to a certain place- holy place close to the temple
The bread of Life
The Hebrew perspective of the symbolism in this section is:
The dreams mentioned in Scripture are vehicles of prophecy, otherwise the Torah would not cite these dreams
Angels represent Moses and Aaron and God atop the ladder
The Ladder is where God stood to give the Torah
The Torah being the Bread of Life - Yeshua
Jacob rested his head on the Rock
All matriarchs of Israel: Sarah, Rebekah and Rachael were barren at some point in their marriages.
This proves that the existence of Israel was a miracle.
Most famous Edomite, descendant of Esau, King Herod The great . Herod (400- 1 BC)
Roman empire arrives in Israel in 63 BC with the Roman general Pompey - 135 years later the temple is in ruins.
In this Torah Portion we continue to talk about Jacob’s descendants still within the historical line of Rome and the Tendency to blood of the descendants of Esau
We will have a general survey of this Torah portion in:
Gen 32:3 - 36:43
Starting with Jacob’s leaving Laban and facing Esau as the first point
Jacob’s meeting God - establish a covenant
We will look at his children, and we will focus on Rachel
The objective is to present to you some historical information so that you may draw you own conclusions as to where we are now.
By no means does this information have as a purpose to denigrate, look down on, or even disrespect history and the beliefs picked up during the history of Christianity
We we are seeking is information that would allow us to make our assessment regarding truth
This presentation seeks to answer the question: What happened in history?


Genesis 32:3 NKJV
Then Jacob sent messengers before him to Esau his brother in the land of Seir, the country of Edom.
In Hebrew understanding when reading the Holy Scriptures, Jacob (Israel) seems to be closely intertwined with Messiah, as a type or a shadow, as we explained in our previous Torah portion
It is safe to say this verse, as well as the experience with Angels ascending and descending on the ladder are a type and a shadow of Messiah first and second coming.
Jacob is looking to pay tribute to his brother, although afraid that Esau might retaliate
Seir =שֵׂעִיר means - Land of Edom, South the Dead Sea
8541 I. שֵׂעִיר (śē·ʿîr):; ≡ Str 8165; TWOT 2274g, 2274h—LN 93-place (terr) 1. Seir: land of Edom, S of Dead Sea (Ge 14:6; 32:4[EB 3]) 2. (mount) in Arabah(Dt 1:2; 2Ch 20:10, 22, 23a)
James Swanson, Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains : Hebrew (Old Testament) (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997).
Edom = Red = Destruction
Jacob calls the name of the Lord
Genesis 32:9–12 NKJV
Then Jacob said, “O God of my father Abraham and God of my father Isaac, the Lord who said to me, ‘Return to your country and to your family, and I will deal well with you’: I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies and of all the truth which You have shown Your servant; for I crossed over this Jordan with my staff, and now I have become two companies. Deliver me, I pray, from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau; for I fear him, lest he come and attack me and the mother with the children. For You said, ‘I will surely treat you well, and make your descendants as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.’ ”
This is the first recorded example of prayer in the Bible
Jacob plans a to also take action by sending a present (goats and small cattle) to Esau:
Jacob combined active exertions with earnest prayer; and this teaches us that we must not depend upon the aid and interposition of God in such a way as to supersede the exercise of prudence and foresight. Superiors are always approached with presents, and the respect expressed is estimated by the quality and amount of the gift
Robert Jamieson, A. R. Fausset, and David Brown, Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible, vol. 1 (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997), 35.
Genesis 32:21 NKJV
So the present went on over before him, but he himself lodged that night in the camp.
He takes his wives and 11 children, and all his camp: servants to cross over the ford of Jabbok (Jordan River shallow area)
Genesis 32:23–24 NKJV
He took them, sent them over the brook, and sent over what he had. Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day.
This mysterious person is called an angel
Hosea 12:4 NKJV
Yes, he struggled with the Angel and prevailed; He wept, and sought favor from Him. He found Him in Bethel, And there He spoke to us—
and God
Genesis 32:30 NKJV
So Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: “For I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.”
This is when God changes Jacob’s name to Israel, which means Prince with God
Jacob lifts his eyes and sees Esau was coming with 400 men
He takes his all his children and puts them in front of him
But puts Leah- her children, Rachel - and Joseph behind
Leaves the dearest family last - that they might be the last to be exposed to danger
After the encounter with God, he is confident and He bows before Esau 7 times, all his wife and children do the same - Bowing = respect
Esau kisses Jacob (Judas kisses Yeshua)
Betrayal is the most difficult things to forgive
Remember our previous Torah portions when we spoke about the Descendants of Esau even to the current age.
they depart from each other and Jacob returns to Succoth and builds Booths - Sukkot
Jacob eventually returns to Bethel where the Lord says
Genesis 35:11 NKJV
Also God said to him: “I am God Almighty. Be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall proceed from you, and kings shall come from your body.
Israel has 11 children so far
Now we get to a crucial point in the history of Israel- the death of Rachel when giving birth to Benjamin (Who she first calls - Ben-Oni = son of my sorrows) but Israel calls him Benjamin - Son of the Right Hand
Crucial in that we can use this event to reflect on the Christmas story
Genesis 35:18–20 NKJV
And so it was, as her soul was departing (for she died), that she called his name Ben-Oni; but his father called him Benjamin. So Rachel died and was buried on the way to Ephrath (that is, Bethlehem). And Jacob set a pillar on her grave, which is the pillar of Rachel’s grave to this day.
Death that brings life is not sorrow
Death that brings life does so because of the Right Hand of God
Jacob erects a memorial for his wife
God buried Moses Himself so that the children of Israel would not make the place of his burial a place of worship
For a Hebrew person, biblically speaking, what is important is not when she/he is born, but how he/ she finishes the race
Ecclesiastes 7:1–4 NKJV
A good name is better than precious ointment, And the day of death than the day of one’s birth; Better to go to the house of mourning Than to go to the house of feasting, For that is the end of all men; And the living will take it to heart. Sorrow is better than laughter, For by a sad countenance the heart is made better. The heart of the wise is in the house of mourning, But the heart of fools is in the house of mirth.
Paul sees it the same way
Philippians 1:21 NKJV
For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
There are many instances recorded in the Bible on how humanity benefited from brothers and sisters lives with us
Jesus death itself is a more marked event than His birth
His life lied down for others is what it means to end well
He died so that we could live
He provided eternal life to us by His sacrifice
He said:
John 11:25 NKJV
Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live.
The celebration of birthdays is not Hebrew or biblical
We do it because it is a tradition in the west
Is then celebrating Christmas the celebration of the birthday of the Lord?
There are only three accounts of birthday celebrations in the Bible, all of them concerning to Gentiles and people held in great regard
Genesis 40:20 NKJV
Now it came to pass on the third day, which was Pharaoh’s birthday, that he made a feast for all his servants; and he lifted up the head of the chief butler and of the chief baker among his servants.
Mark 6:21 NKJV
Then an opportune day came when Herod on his birthday gave a feast for his nobles, the high officers, and the chief men of Galilee.
Matthew 14:6 NKJV
But when Herod’s birthday was celebrated, the daughter of Herodias danced before them and pleased Herod.
There is mention of a celebration of a “day” in Job, but not enough evidence that refers to a general practice among the Jews to be a birthday celebration - I would propose they are celebrating Shabbat
Job 1:4 NKJV
And his sons would go and feast in their houses, each on his appointed day, and would send and invite their three sisters to eat and drink with them.
Job 1:13 NKJV
Now there was a day when his sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house;
Job 1:18 NKJV
While he was still speaking, another also came and said, “Your sons and daughters were eating and drinking wine in their oldest brother’s house,
The Lord Himself did not command us to commemorate His birthday, but rather His death
Matthew 26:26–29 NKJV
And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to the disciples and said, “Take, eat; this is My body.” Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.”
Paul continues with that commandment:
1 Corinthians 11:24–26 NKJV
and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes.
For a Hebrew person, biblically speaking, what is important is not when she/he is born, but how he/ she finishes the race
Birth-day— They were specially celebrated in the land of Egypt (Gen. 40:20). There is no recorded instance in Scripture of the celebration of birth-days among the Jews. On the occasion of Herod’s birth-day John the Baptist was beheaded (Matt. 14:6).1
1 M. G. Easton, Illustrated Bible Dictionary and Treasury of Biblical History, Biography, Geography, Doctrine, and Literature (New York: Harper & Brothers, 1893), 100.
How come we celebrate Christmas as the Birthday of the Lord?
There are different sources that attempt to explain the origin and link to the Messiah.
CHRISTMAS. Tourists taking the Christmas pilgrimage to Jerusalem and Bethlehem are apt to be surprised at finding it celebrated there on three different days a Roman Catholics and most Protestants observe December 25. The Eastern Orthodox church holds to January 6, while the Armenian church observes January 19.
There is no evidence for the observance of December 25 before c. a.d. 300. Hippolytus, in his commentary on Daniel, is supposed to have been the first to compute the date. He believed that from the conception to the crucifixion of Jesus was exactly thirty-three years, and that both these events took place on March 25. That would make the birth, nine months later, fall on December 25. The weakness of these premises is obvious. In the 3rd cen. some favored April 18 or 19 for the birth of Christ, others March 28. A. H. Newman says: “The earliest record of the recognition of December 25 as a church festival is in the Philocalian Calendar (copied 354, but representing Roman practice in 336)” (SHERK, III, 47).
One objection often raised against observing Christmas is the claim that it is simply the old heathen festival of the sun Christianized. But it may have been intended to link this with the birth of the Sun of Righteousness (HDCG, I, 261).1
1 Ralph Earle, “Christmas,” ed. Charles F. Pfeiffer, Howard F. Vos, and John Rea, The Wycliffe Bible Encyclopedia (Moody Press, 1975).
CHRIST´MAS (“Christ’s Mass,” or “Festival”). The annual festival held by the Christian church in memory of the birth of Christ. It begins with the evening of December 24 (called Christmas Eve) and continues until Epiphany (January 6), the whole period being called Christmastide. It is more particularly observed on December 25, called Christmas Day, or simply Christmas.
(Please pay attention to the colour RED) As to whether our Lord’s birth really occurred on December 25 ancient authorities are not agreed. Clement of Alexandria says that some place it on April 20, others on May 20, whereas Epiphanius states that in Egypt Jesus was believed to have been born on January 6. For a long time the Greeks had no special feast corresponding to Christmas Day. Chrysostom, in a Christmas sermon, a.d. 386, said: “It is not ten years since this day was clearly known to us, but it has been known from the beginning to those who dwell in the West.” The Western church unanimously agreed upon this date, and the Eastern church adopted it without much contradiction.
1 Merrill Frederick Unger et al., The New Unger’s Bible Dictionary (Chicago: Moody Press, 1988).In fact:
The encyclopedias are united in saying that Christmas did not originate with the apostolic church.
Encyclopedia Britannica
Encyclopedia Britannica, 1946 edition, has this: “Christmas (i.e., the Mass of Christ)...Christmas was not among the earliest festivals of the church...” It was not instituted by Christ or the apostles, or by Bible authority. It was picked up afterward from paganism.
The early Christian community distinguished between the identification of the date of Jesus’ birth and the liturgical celebration of that event. The actual observance of the day of Jesus’ birth was long in coming. In particular, during the first two centuries of Christianity, there was strong opposition to recognizing birthdays of martyrs or, for that matter, of Jesus. Numerous Church Fathers offered sarcastic comments about the pagan custom of celebrating birthdays when, in fact, saints and martyrs should be honoured on the days of their martyrdom—their true “birthdays,” from the church’s perspective.
The Encyclopedia Americana, 1944 edition, says: “Christmas...It was, according to many authorities, not celebrated in the first centuries of the Christian church, as the Christian usage in general was to celebrate the death of remarkable persons rather than their birth...” (The “Communion,” which is instituted by New Testament Bible authority, is a memorial of the death of Christ.) “
Rome’s State Religion
Paganism was the STATE RELIGION OF ROME. The following is from Robinson's Medieval and Modern Times, an older College Textbook, p.7, “The worship of the Emperor: In a word the Roman government was not only wonderfully organized...everyone was REQUIRED to join the in the WORSHIP OF THE EMPEROR because he stood for the majesty and the glory of the dominion...all were obliged, as good citizens, to join in the sacrifices to the head of state AS A GOD” .
PAGANS Those who worship a god or gods other than the living God to whom the Bible witnesses. NIV, REB, and RSV sometimes use pagans as the translation of the Greek ethnoi (1 Cor. 5:1; 10:20), which is generally translated “Gentiles” (so KJV, NASB). In English, Gentile relates to ethnic background while pagan refers to religious affiliation. See Gentiles; Gods, Pagan.1
1 Chad Brand et al., eds., “Pagans,” Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary (Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, 2003), 1236.
Mithra, Mithraism Page 1144
MITHRA, MITHRAISM Persian god and the mystery religion devoted to his worship.
Mithra, Mithraism Page 1144
The God Mithra Originally a Persian deity considered to be the mediator between mankind and Ahura Mazda, god of light.
Mithra, Mithraism Page 1144
Statues of Mithra characteristically show him holding a bull by the nostrils while plunging a knife into its neck.
Mithra, Mithraism Page 1144
The Romans identified Mithra with the sun god.
Mithra, Mithraism Page 1144
December 25 was celebrated as his birthday.
Mithra, Mithraism Page 1144
Three traditions relate the birth of Mithra: (1) he was born of an incestuous relationship between Ahura Mazda and his own mother; (2) he was born of an ordinary mortal; (3) Mithra was born from a rock.
Mithra, Mithraism Page 1144
After his redemptive work on earth was finished, Mithra partook of a last supper with some of his devotees and then ascended to heaven where he continues to assist the faithful in their struggle against demons.
Mithra, Mithraism Page 1144
The Religion of Mithra Since Mithraism belongs to the general category known as mystery religions, our knowledge of its specific doctrines and rituals is very limited.
Mithra, Mithraism Pages 1144–1145
Among the more prominent are: December 25, the god’s birthday; Sunday, the holy day; baptism; a sacred meal; categorical ethics; belief in a final judgment with eternal life for the righteous and punishment for the wicked; and that the world would finally be destroyed by fire. 1
1 Joe E. Lunceford, “Mithra, Mithraism,” ed. Chad Brand et al., Holman Illustrated Bible Dictionary (Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, 2003), 1144–1145.
The Emperors and the Sun god Mithra were worshipped as ONE AND THE SAME! The theology was that the Emperors were the INCARNATION OF THE SUN GOD ON EARTH: “The identification of the Emperor AS SUN GOD encouraged by eastern theology [Persia] of the KING SUN and by political considerations, undoubtedly contributed to the diffusion of a public sun-cult” (The Mysteries of Mithra, by Fanz Cumont, p.101).
“The IDENTIFICATION OF THE ROMAN EMPEROR WITH THE SUN HAS A LONG HISTORY...Nero also erected outside his golden house a colossal statue of Sol Apollo with a radiant crown. The Emperor Aurelian was a devotee of the Syrian cult SOL INVICTUS...A magnificent temple was erected to Sol on the Agrippae and its dedication day (Natalis) [meaning birth] was DECEMBER 25...In the 3rd century the dedicatory inscriptions to Sol, Apollo and MITHRAS WERE SOMETIMES INTERCHANGEABLE...”
(From Constantine to Julian, C. lieu and Dominic Montserrat, p.75). Notice that the Emperors with Sol and Mithra were all interchangeable, and his birth day was December 25th!
When we celebrate Christmas, are we then remembering the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob?
Are we celebrating His Messiah?


Many other researchers and authors have come to the same conclusions. Arthur Weigall wrote in “The Paganism in our Christianity,” on page 209: “The policy of the Church is to adapt old pagan holy days to Christian ideas, and not to suppress them... The festivals which we call Christmas and Easter are pagan, not Christian, in origin.”
Jacob’s story with Esau shows us the root of his ongoing battle against of the two nations - the descendants of Esau, marked for their attraction to Red - destruction and blood, and Jacob - the sons of promise and their history
Jacob - having his name changed, speak to us of the new birth we find in the Lord
His ladder - speaks to us of the Lord making every effort to come down to be with us - to tabernacle with us
Rachel’s passing - speaks to us in that it is not important how we start - but how we end
The celebration of birthdays is not Hebrew or biblical
Ecclesiastes 7:1 NKJV
A good name is better than precious ointment, And the day of death than the day of one’s birth;
We continually work in this world to be obedient of our calling
Romans 8:28–29 NKJV
And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.
We respect anyone who wishes to celebrate Christmas or Hanukkah
But must not be deceived
Regarding the end times, The Lord said,
Matthew 24:1–13 NKJV
Then Jesus went out and departed from the temple, and His disciples came up to show Him the buildings of the temple. And Jesus said to them, “Do you not see all these things? Assuredly, I say to you, not one stone shall be left here upon another, that shall not be thrown down.” Now as He sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be? And what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered and said to them: “Take heed that no one deceives you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of sorrows. “Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and kill you, and you will be hated by all nations for My name’s sake. And then many will be offended, will betray one another, and will hate one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because lawlessness will abound, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end shall be saved.
To me, there is only one life that matters: Yeshua
My prayer is that: We celebrate the Lord every Shabbat - not just on Christmas day
1 Corinthians 11:24–26 NKJV
and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, “Take, eat; this is My body which is broken for you; do this in remembrance of Me.” In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.” For as often as you eat this bread and drink this cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death till He comes.
Shabbat Shalom
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