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Double Blind (Toldot)

Preview: The “sibling swap” Rivkah orchestrates against Yitzchak is simply a version of the very same ruse he had orchestrated a chapter earlier, against Avimelech. In fact, all of the major stories from sefer Bereshit through the beginning of sefer Shemot may have their roots in the ruse that the patriarchs pulled on Avimelech/Pharaoh – and the literary links are there to demonstrate it.

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The Prince and the Precedent (Vayishlach)

Preview: Shechem’s assault of Dinah finds eerie precedent in the earlier “abducted sister” stories: Pharaoh’s and Avimelech’s abduction of Sarah, and Avimelech’s near abduction of Rivkah.

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Digging Deeper (Toldot)

Preview: Almost word-for-word, the blessing Yitzchak receives before moving to Gerar is the blessing his father received following akedat Yitzchak. Some thoughts on how that blessing materialized during Yitzchak’s stay with Avimelech – and how the literary legacy of the akedah illustrates that true sacrifice never really ends.

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On Second Glance (Chayei Sarah)

Preview: On the parallels between Avraham’s conflict with Avimelech and Avraham’s search for a daughter-in-law.

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Willful Blindness (Vayera)

Preview: On the theme of “seeing”/”sight” in our parshah – and why Avimelech plays a much more central role in the story of Avraham and of his descendants than we typically appreciate.

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Out of the Ark (Shemini)

Preview: Does this week’s haftarah, which re-tells how David moved the aron to Yerushalayim, contain hidden references to the Plishtim?

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