Parashat Vayetze

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Provided by the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies, exploring Torah through the original sources.

Questions

1. When Isaac left Beersheva, to which city did he head?

2. What do we already know about Haran?

3. What was the name of the place where Isaac had his dream and what did he call it?

4. This week’s parasha begins and ends with an event that is very similar. Like a sandwich, in the middle we have the story about Jacob, his wives, children, and his relationship with Laban. What similar thing happened at the beginning and end of the parasha?

5. What vow did Isaac make after his dream and under what conditions did he agree to fulfill it?

6. Laban was Rebekah’s brother. Who was their father?

7. Sarah and Rachel had a common problem? What was it and how did they solve it? By whom?

8. What did Rachel name her first child, and what did his name mean?

9. Reuben went into the field and found what for his mother? What is a mandrake?

10. Rachel asked Leah if she would give her some of the mandrakes. What was Leah’s response? What did Rachel give Leah for the mandrakes?

11. How many sons did Rachel conceive? How many through Bilhah? What were the names of Rachel’s four sons?

12. When Jacob left Haran with his family and all his possessions, Laban chased after him and said that someone had stolen his idols. What did Yaakov say would happen to the person on whom the gods would be found?

13. Laban and Jacob made a covenant. What was it and what did it really mean?

Answers

1. Isaac went to Haran (28:10).

2.  We know that Abraham lived in Haran According to the Nahmonides, Nahor, the place where Eliezer also found Rebekah is in the same geographical location as Haran (24: 10-15).

3. Isaac had his dream in Luz, and he called it Beit El (28:19).
4. Jacob built a monument to God (28:18, 31:52).  

5. Isaac made the vow that if God would make him prosper, he would pledge to God a tenth of all he was given (28:20-22).

6.  Bethuel was Rebekah and Laban’s father (24:24).

7. Sara and Rachel were not able to bear children. They had Abraham and Isaac produce children for them through Hagar and Bilhah (30:1-5).

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