Thursday, January 04, 2007

Vayechi 2 - LiYshu'as'cha Kivisi, HaShem

Starting from the episode of the butler and baker at the end of Vayeishev (3 weeks ago) and ending immediately before the burning bush in next week's parsha, this passuk, at the end of the blessing of Dan, is the only place where HaShem's 4-letter name, associated with Divine mercy, appears. Every other time God is referenced within this section, it is by the Shem Elakus, associated with Divine judgement. This seems to be fitting, as this section describes the events leading up to Yaakov and his sons going down to Egypt, so the absence of the Shem Havayah highlights the gravity of this period of exile. The Name of Mercy does not return until God appears to Moshe and instructs him to bring the Jewish people out from Egypt.

The one exception is this verse, which is a prayer for future redemption, in which Yaakov temporarily steps out of the exile in which he and his family are situated, and invokes Divine mercy.



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