This week Nehemia Gordon and Keith Johnson discuss the Prophets portion for Vayigash, covering Ezekiel 37:15-28. Gordon and Johnson set the stage by describing the pivotal time in the history of Israel and Judah when Ezekiel lived and prophesied. They also share the life-changing encounters they've each had with the writings of this prophet. Word studies include:“son of man,” “join,” the plural of “one,” “settlements,” and the rare context of “save” in this Portion. At center stage are the ten lost tribes of Israel. We learn what Josephus knew about the tribes, as well as the opposing views of Rabbis Akiva and Eliezer regarding their ingathering. Proving one of the rabbis in error, Gordon recounts the day he was driving a tractor on an Israeli kibbutz and witnessed a convoy of Ethiopians traversing the highway—fulfilling Ezekiel’s prophecy as they made Aliyah. Gordon and Johnson close with a prayer that light be shed on all 12 tribes, and that the day soon comes when there is one nation, one temple, and one king.
"As for you, son of man, take a stick for yourself... Then take another stick... Then join them one to another for yourself into one stick." Ezekiel 37:16-17
The Original Torah Pearls - Vayigash (Genesis 44:18-47:27)
The original art at the top of this page was created by 12 year old Laine Forrest based on the verses:
"As for you, son of man, take a stick for yourself and write on it: 'For Judah and for the children of Israel, his companions.' Then take another stick and write on it, 'For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel, his companions.' Then join them one to another for yourself into one st." Ezekiel 37:16-17
Our thanks also go out to other artists who submitted some amazing original works of art for this week's episode. The runner-up was Anna Jakubowski who created this stunning depiction of Ezekiel's stick: