Genesis 32:4 - 36:43

Obadiah 1:1 - 1:21

In this Torah portion, God tells Jacob to return home. Worried that his brother Esau will kill him, Jacob divides his clan into two camps, so at least some will survive in case of a fight. Jacob sleeps alone in the desert and is awoken by an angel who wrestles him through the night. Jacob survives and is blessed by the angel and renamed Israel. Jacob meets his brother and, surprisingly, they embrace. Dinah, Jacob’s daughter, is raped by Shekhem, who then proposes to Jacob that he marry her. Shimeon and Levi brutally murder Shekhem and his clan. Rachel has another child, whom she and Jacob name Benjamin. FULL SUMMARY
HAFTARAH SUMMARY

Overcoming Envy

Esau and Jacob are able to reconcile only when each is secure in his achievements.

More on this Torah Portion

Who Was Dinah?

Was her encounter with Shechem rape or consensual?

Confronting Our Dark Sides

Like Jacob's struggle, each of us must recognize, confront and struggle with our darker side.

Parashat Vayishlach: Summary

With a video commentary from Bim Bam.

Why the Angel Asks Jacob His Name

By asking Jacob his name, his wrestling adversary challenges him to examine himself.

A Lack of Empathy

Jacob's reaction to Dinah's rape is puzzling and disturbing.

Transformative Encounters

To be a Jew is to be as Jacob: struggling, transforming, and inspiring to others.

Why Jacob Returns for His Small Vessel

Jacob views material possessions as essential and indispensable.

When Jacob Reconciled with Esau

Jacob is surprised to learn that even with estranged family members, reconciliation is possible.

The Path to Reconciliation

How do you keep the past alive without becoming its prisoner?

Struggling With Monotheism

Jacob and his family's evolving relationship with God illustrates the complex struggle with faith and monotheism.

Exile and Survival: Jacob’s Legacy

Jacob and the Jewish people have learned powerful lessons from the experience of exile.

Being Truly Present To God And People

We can learn from Jacob's encounter with Esau to meet others as we would meet God.

Israel Means To Struggle With God

It is possible to be a good Jew and have questions about God.

Being Content With What You Have

Sometimes we simply need a reminder to be appreciative of our lives.

The Silence of Dina and Other Rape Victims

The Bible focuses on Jacob's and his son's reactions, but not on those of the victim herself.

Making Today Matter

Overcoming your name.

Haftarah for Vayishlach

The fate of the Edomites.

Parashat Vayishlah Quiz

Test your knowledge of this Torah portion.

Silent Deliberations

We should learn to react with humanity.

Living With Threat

Jacob sends Esau the message that despite having lived with Laban, he has kept the commandments and learned to stand up to powerful figures.

Anatomy Of An Enemy

Amalek's personal history may have fueled his descendants' anger towards the descendants of Abraham.