Vayechi (And He Lived) B’Resheet (Gen) 47-50

Torah Portion: Vayechi (And He Lived)  B’Resheet (Gen.) 47-50

HafTorah:  I Kings 2:1-12

This Torah portion is the last of the book of Genesis. Interestingly, it is named “And He Lived” while included in this portion we read of the death of both Jacob and Joseph. This brings me to the first point I would like to talk about. Why would a Torah portion named, “He Lived” devote much of its time to the death of these two men? I think it has to do with the way scripture looks at time. For example the Greeks looked at time as cyclical, never reaching an ending point but always starting over again, there will always be another tomorrow.  The Jews, and I believe we would be the same, look at time as covenantal. For example, here in Genesis in chapter 12 we read of G-d’s promise to Avraham that his descendants will be as the stars in the heavens. He would be given a Land for his people. Yet by the end of Deut./D’Varim the people have not crossed into the Land. The people did not despair, the promise was always before them.