28 November 2019


1 Kislev 5780
Rosh Chodesh Bet
Erev Shabbat Kodesh
Parashat Toldot
"I loved you," said Hashem, and you said, "How have you loved us?"  Was not Esau a brother of Jacob - the words of Hashem - yet I loved Jacob.  But, I hated Esau and I made his mountains a desolation, and his heritage for the desert serpents. 

Though Edom said, "We have become destitute, but we shall return and rebuild the ruins"; so said Hashem, Master of Legions, "They may build, but I shall tear down; they shall call them, 'the boundary of wickedness, and the people who infuriated Hashem to eternity.'  Your eyes shall see and you shall say, 'Hashem is great beyond the boundary of Israel.'"  (Haftarah Toldot, Malachi 1.2-5)
From the Stone Edition Chumash Commentary...
Through Shem, God conveyed to [Rivkah] that the unborn infants represented two nations and two conflicting ideologies - Israel and Edom - and that their struggle in the womb symbolized the future rivalries between them, which would end with the younger prevailing over the older (R' Hoffmann).  Thus, the turmoil within her was due to the irreconcilable conflict between two nations that was already taking shape (Mizrachi).
The Sages teach that the two of them will never be mighty simultaneously; when one falls, the other will rise (Megillah 6a).  History has demonstrated this prophecy in practice.  Two regimes, one espousing morality and justice and the other standing for license and barbarity, cannot long coexist.  They must always be in conflict until one comes to dominate the other, whether through victory on the battlefield or in the contest for men's minds.