This week’s Torah Portion is Parashat Vayishlach. The reading is Genesis 32:4-36:43. Here is a brief commentary by Baruch:
Hate for Israel and the Jewish people is not new. It has been around since G-d made a covenant with Abraham. What one needs to understand is that this hate is satanic. It is related in Satan’s desire to thwart the plans and the purposes of G-d. In this week’s Torah portion one reads about the birth of Binyamin (Benjamin) which led to the death of Rachel. The text says,
“And Jacob set up a monument over her grave; it is a monument of Rachel’s tomb unto this day.” Genesis 35:20
I remember the first time I visited Rachel’s tomb and saw a rather simple structure that housed the site. With the concessions that Israel has made for peace over the last 18 years and granting the Palestinians greater responsibilities for administering the areas where most of the Palestinians live, came numerous attempts not only to destroy the site, but also to kill those who visited it. Now this tomb has been turned into a compound so as to protect the site, with a large wall shielding the bulletproof buses that take both Jew and non-Jews (usually Christians) to the tomb. How sad it is that Muslims feel so threatened by the existence of any sign of Scriptural truth that they respond with violence and through destruction of property.
Perhaps why Muslims fear this location is what the Prophet Jeremiah said concerning this location,
“Thus said HaShem, a voice is heard on high the bitter weeping of Rachel, she weeps concerning her children; she refuses to be comforted concerning her children for they are not. Thus said HaShem, restrain your voice from weeping and your eyes from a tear, for there is a reward for your act says HaShem for they shall return from a foreign land. There is hope for your end says the L-rd, the children will return to their border.” Jeremiah 31:14-16
What a great message of hope. In the Gospel of Matthew the first part of this passage is quoted (See Matthew 2:18) in regard to King Herod killing the male children two years and younger. Don’t make the same error as the replacement theologians who want to say that these verses have their complete fulfillment in the time of King Herod. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Gospel of Matthew quotes only one verse to bring the same sorrow that Rachel had at the time of her death, for she prophesied concerning the exile that would happen to the Jewish people and the death of all those male children. Notice that Rachel is grieving not about her death, but about these two events which will bring great sorrow to the Jewish people. Nevertheless, in the end times there will be a return of the Jewish people to the land and the ancient hope will be restored. It is not a mere coincidence that also in this 31st chapter of Jeremiah, the New Covenant is also prophesied. This is the same New Covenant that Messiah Yeshua spoke of at the Last Supper (Matthew 26:28 and parallel passages). Careful attention to this New Covenant reveals that although Yeshua’s blood established this covenant, the full outcome of this covenant has not yet been realized.
The Muslims do not want the outcome of this covenant which is the Kingdom of G-d upon earth. Hence, they lash out violently at anything and anyone who is connected to it. How sad it is when people are in darkness and will not step into the light, which is the Light of this world (Messiah Yeshua).