Rabbi Hagai Lundin
Rabbi Hagai LundinCourtesy

The root of the argument between Rivka and Yitzhak (Rebecca and Isaac) is who will govern and judge in the real world. Yitzhak is aware of Esav (Esau), the "jewel", who grew up in his home, of his materialism and pretentiousness, but it seems to him that people like Esav – fearless hunters – are needed to run the world.

Yaakov (Jacob) seemed to be too naïve, a delicate Torah scholar. Rivka, on the other hand, who grew up in Lavan’s house, recognized and knew that people like Esav are not only spiritually problematic but also a danger in real life.

A legal system, disconnected from belief and spirituality, will at some point lose true judgement, will have mercy on the cruel and thus allow them to continue to be brutal to the weak. On the other hand, a brutal and dictatorial system, is bad for everyone.

Rivka proposes and succeeds in establishing an ideal combination: "the voice is the voice of Yaakov but the hands are the hands of Esav" – not in two differeint people, but in Yaakov himself, a system that is sourced from Yaakov's voice, the eternal Jewish ethos.

When that truth is clear, enemies are not confused with friends, and the real world is run in a more realistic and successful way.

The bad will pass.

The good will prevail.

With God's help.

Rabbi Hagai Lundinis a rabbi in yeshiva and academic settings. He teaches on various media channels and is a popular lecturer in Judaism throughout Israel.