Joseph The Dreamer,
Yehuda & Tamar,
Joseph & Potiphar ........
Joseph Recounting His Dreams (drawing by Rembrandt)
א – וַיֵּשֶׁב יַעֲקֹב, בְּאֶרֶץ מְגוּרֵי אָבִיו--בְּאֶרֶץ, כְּנָעַן.
1 And Jacob dwelt in the land of his father's sojournings, in the land of Canaan.
ב – אֵלֶּה תֹּלְדוֹת יַעֲקֹב, יוֹסֵף בֶּן-שְׁבַע-עֶשְׂרֵה שָׁנָה הָיָה רֹעֶה אֶת-אֶחָיו בַּצֹּאן, וְהוּא נַעַר אֶת-בְּנֵי בִלְהָה וְאֶת-בְּנֵי זִלְפָּה, נְשֵׁי אָבִיו; וַיָּבֵא יוֹסֵף אֶת-דִּבָּתָם רָעָה, אֶל-אֲבִיהֶם.
2 These are the generations of Jacob. Joseph, being seventeen years old, was feeding the flock with his brethren, being still a lad even with the sons of Bilhah, and with the sons of Zilpah, his father's wives; and Joseph brought evil report of them unto their father.
ג – וְיִשְׂרָאֵל, אָהַב אֶת-יוֹסֵף מִכָּל-בָּנָיו--כִּי-בֶן-זְקֻנִים הוּא, לוֹ; וְעָשָׂה לוֹ, כְּתֹנֶת פַּסִּים.
3 Now Israel loved Joseph more than all his children, because he was the son of his old age; and he made him a coat of many colours.
Jacob Sees Joseph’s Coat
(painting circa 1816–1817 by
As Jacob showers Joseph with special gifts and attention, Joseph's 11 brothers get a bit angry, and rightfully so. But this doesn't absolve them from throwing Joseph in a pit, does it? MORE>
Yehudah and Tamar (painting circa 1650–1660 by the school of Rembrandt)
Amos warns the people: "Do not treat the poor unfairly."
In the first half of this week's haftarah, the prophet Amos rebukes Israel for a lengthy list of sins and warns that harsh punishment is on its way. Though the message of retribution for wrongdoing is hardly unique among the latter prophets, Amos' prophecy has some distinct features. Rather than focusing on Israel's idolatrous ways, as did most of those who shared Amos' line of work, he offers a caustic critique of interpersonal behavior among the Israelites.
Justice for the Poor
Amos outlines the ways that the wealthy in Israel oppress the poor: "They have sold for silver those whose cause was just, and the needy for a pair of sandals…you who trample the heads of the poor into the dust of the ground" (2:6-7). This message--as well as other similar cries throughout the book of Amos--has made this prophet of the eighth century BCE particularly popular among modern social activists.