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INSIGHT: What’s So Special About the Birthright Anyway?

Let’s Make a Deal

Let’s Make a Deal

When the twins were 15 years old, their grandfather, Avraham, passed away. Yaakov was cooking a pot of red-hot lentils as he prepared the traditional meal served to mourners. After a long, unsuccessful day of hunting, the exhausted Eisav walked in to the delicious smell of a hearty stew.

“Hey, Yaakov, give me some of that red stew you’re cooking!” Eisav demanded. “I’m starving! I haven’t eaten the whole day!!”

Yaakov thought about that. “Hmmm… time to make a deal.”

“Sure, Eisav,” replied Yaakov. “You can have as much as you want. But I want one thing in return, your BIRTHRIGHT.”

“You want that useless birthright?” Eisav said. “You can have it! Now give me that stew. Pour that red stuff right down my throat…NOW!”

Shazak insight

What’s So Special About the Birthright Anyway?

A Kohen (priest) at the time of the Beis HaMikdash (Holy Temple) had the special privilege of serving HaShem by offering sacrifices on the altar. Before the “Giving of the Torah,” the first-born of every family was the one who would offer sacrifices. That’s why Yaakov wanted the birthright – he had a burning desire to serve HaShem. And Eisav? He’d trade that for a pot of soup!

However, as we shall see at the end of this Parsha, Eisav regretted this decision, for the firstborn was destined to get the special blessings from their father, Yitzchak. This made Eisav so upset that he wanted to kill Yaakov!

Geared for Kids... Great for Adults!

Geared for Kids... Great for Adults!

Did you know learning Torah could be this much fun?
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