hebrew
1)

Why did Ya'akov address Yehudah directly, in an attractive manner, in a way that he did not do to any of his other sons?

1.

Rashi: Because when Yehudah heard his father rebuke his three older brothers, he was afraid that also he would be rebuked (about the incident with his daughter-in-law Tamar), and he began to move away (toward the exit). That was when his father appeased him with warm words, intimating that he was different than them.

2.

Seforno: He was informing him that, unlike his three older brothers, he was worthy to take over the kingship, since, unlike them, there was nothing that prevented it.

2)

Why indeed, did Ya'akov decline to rebuke him for his sin?

1.

Targum Onkelos and Targum Yonasan: He earned a blessing in place of a rebuke because he did Teshuvah by admitting to Tamar. 1


1

Which is why his brothers would acknowledge him (as their leader),Yisrael would come to be known as Yehudim and why he would defeat his enemies, as the Pasuk goes on to state (Targum Yonasan). Moreover, he told him, that is why he was called 'Yehudah' (Rashi in Divrei ha'Yamim 1, 16:11).

3)

What did Ya'akov mean when he said "Atah Yoducha Achecha!"?

1.

Targum Yonasan: Refer to 49:8:2:1**.

2.

Rashbam: He meant that Yehudah's brothers would grant him the majesty (Hod) 1 of kingship 2

3.

Da'as Zekenim #1, Hadar Zekenim: They will admit that you are king over them.

4.

Da'as Zekenim #2: All of them Yisrael will be called Yehudim, from your name, and Mashi'ach will come from you.


1

See Pinchas, 27:20 (See Rashbam, who gives other examples).

2

As is evident from the end of the Pasuk.

4)

What does "Yadcha be'Oref Oyvecha" mean?

1.

Targum Yonasan: It means that he will shoot arrows after them when they turn round (showing him the back of their necks) and flee.

2.

Targum Onkelos: He will show a strong hand against his enemies, who will scatter and flee, turning the back of their necks to him. 1

3.

Hadar Zekenim: When Esav wanted to kill [Yehudah's] brothers, Yehudah did not want to kill him from the front, for Esav's face resembled Yakov's. Rather, he killed him from the back. 2


1

Rashi: This was fulfilled in the days of David ha'Melech, who said "ve'Oyvai Tatah Li Oref" (Shmuel 2, 23:41).

2

A Midrash of Chanukah says that there were decrees specifically against Yehudah, because Edom had a tradition that he killed Esav. This is unlike the Midrash that Chushim ben Dan killed him at Yakov's burial.

5)

When Yitzchak blessed Ya'akov (in Toldos, Bereishis 27:29), he referred to his maternal brothers ("Bnei Imecha"). Why, when he blessed Yehudah, did he refer to his paternal brothers ("Bnei Avicha")?

1.

Rashi and Rashbam: Because, whereas Yitzchak had only one wife, Ya'akov had four.

6)

When Yitzchak blessed Ya'akov (in Toldos, 27:29), he referred to his maternal brothers ("Bnei Imecha"). Why, when he blessed Yehudah, did he refer to his paternal brothers ("Bnei Avicha")?

1.

Rashi and Rashbam: Because, whereas Yitzchak had only one wife, Ya'akov had four.

7)

רש"י: לא אתה כמותם: מנין דרשו זאת?

1.

גור אריה: אם לא כן- מילת "אתה" מיותרת.

8)

רש"י: לא אמר בני אמך: למה יצחק לא אמר 'בני אביך'?

1.

גור אריה (בראשית כז,כט): יצחק אמר "בני אמך" לומר שהם יהיו כפופים לו כאשה הכפופה לבעלה, ולא אמר 'בני אביך' כדי לא לתלות את הקללה בעצמו.

9)

למה זכה יהודה לברכה זו?

1.

מהר"ל (נתיבות עולם, נתיב אהבת ה' פ"ב, עמ' מו ד"ה ודבר): יהודה קידש שם שמים ברבים [כשקפצו בניו לים סוף] ולכן זכה לברכה זו שהיא בגלוי. 1


1

עיין עוד במהר"ל באור חדש (עמ' קי, אסתר ב,ה) שיהודה הוא הראש של ישראל ולכן נאמר בו "ידיך בעורף אויביך".

10)

מתי התקיים ביהודה "ידיך בעורף אויביך"?

1.

מהר"ל (אור חדש עמ' קי, אסתר ב,ה): מרדכי היה מזרע יהודה שנתברך ב"ידיך בעורף אויביך" ולכן הוא מוכן לגבור על האויב.

2.

מהר"ל (חידושי אגדות ח"ב עמ' נג ד"ה ויש, סוטה דף יג.): כאשר מנע עשיו את קבורת יעקב, הרגו יהודה מאחוריו- כי מפניו היה עשיו דומה ליעקב. 1

3.

מהר"ל (חידושי אגדות ח"ד עמ' נה ד"ה הוי, ע"ז דף כה.): הנלחם בקשת יורה את החץ בעורף האויב, וזה נאמר על יהודה כי הקשת קשה ומהירה, והיא פועלת במקבל מבלי שימשש אותו [בשונה מהחרב] ולכן הוא פועל על ידי כח נבדל [-רוחני].


1

עיין עוד במהר"ל בחידושי אגדות (ח"ד עמ' לז ד"ה ויש, ע"ז דף יא:) מה שהוסיף בעניין זה.

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