By HaRav Dov Begon
Rosh HaYeshiva, Machon Meir
Before Jacob’s encounter with Esau, He prepared himself for three things: to give
gifts, to pray, and to make war.
To give gifts, as it says, “He sent the gifts ahead of him” (32:22).
To pray, as it says, “O G-d of my father Abraham and G-d of my father Isaac... Rescue
me, I pray, from the hand of my brother, from the hand of Esau. I am afraid of him, for he
can come and kill us all -- mothers and children alike” (32:10,12).
To make war, as it says, “If Esau comes and attacks one camp, at least the other camp
will survive” (32:9).
Today, the deeds of our ancestors presage our own. The Jewish People, rising to
rebirth in their land, likewise must prepare themselves for these three things.
Gifts: We must be strong economically and technologically so that we can show our
neighbors and the whole world that the State of Israel can contribute -- and in fact is
contributing -- to mankind, from an economic, scientific and technological standpoint. Hence
it is worth their while to make peace with us, for they can only benefit from doing so.
Prayer: At the same time, we must pray and seek mercy from G-d so that He nullifies
our enemies’ counsel and halts their designs.
War: Above all we must prepare ourselves for the possibility of war, by strengthening
the Israeli army so that it can deter our enemies. We must likewise strengthen the spirit of the
nation as well as the spirit of the army as it sets out to defend our country.
They must come to know what we are fighting for. Ours is a war of the children of
light against the children of darkness. Ultimately, we will achieve an enormous victory, and
through that G-d’s name will be magnified and sanctified on earth.
Looking forward to complete salvation,