Teves 5767 – K’Efraim U’Menashe – by Rav Cohen

Teves 5767
K’Efraim U’Menashe
by Rav Cohen

Hello to you all,

In parshas Vayechi, we are told about the berochos that Yaakov blessed his grandchildren Menasheh and Ephraim. From that moment on throughout Jewish history all parents bless their children with that blessing, “Yesimchoh Elokim KeEphraim uMenasheh”.

The question is asked, why of all berochos, was this one chosen to forever be the parental bracha?

There are 3 answers given:

Some say that seeing that Ephraim and Menasheh were raised in Chuts l’Aretz and did not live in the best environment to say the least, they still became great people. We therefore bless our children that they also should reach greatness wherever golus takes them.

A second answer I once heard (I am not mentioning the sources because I do not recall them) is that usually we see a yeridas hadoros from one generation to the next. Generally, the further we go from Har Sinai the lower the level. Ephraim and Menasheh were exceptions to that rule! Although they were children of Yosef, they went UP one generation and also became Shvatim like their father and uncles! We bless our children that although they are a later generation the drop should be only minimal if at all.

Thirdly, the Terumos Hadeshen gives another beautiful answer. Yaakov gave Ephraim, the younger brother, a greater berochoh than the older brother, Menasheh. Yet, we never see Menasheh being jealous or cruel to his younger brother – what great midos! We bless our children may you have the greatness of Ephraim and the middos of Menasheh.

Beezras Hashem we should all be zocheh to build homes and have all these 3 kavonos when blessing our children.