When Yaakov becomes afraid of Eisav's arrival, the passuk says that he was very frightened. Chazal in Maseches Brachos note that he was afraid שמא יגרום החטא. Does this display a lack of Bitachon, especially since Hashem promised Yaakov that he will be taken care of?

*IIRC, the Ramban has a kuntres where he discussed this idea, but I don't know where it is.

  • @Loewian can you perhaps elaborate as to what's in this link?
    – Bochur613
    May 24, 2020 at 15:30
  • 1
    I'm not sure I understand the question. If Hashem said He'd protect Yaakov, and that was contingent on his merits, and Yaakov feared he lost those merits, where is the lack of bitachon?
    – robev
    May 24, 2020 at 17:56
  • In fact, isn't this why the Gemarra gives this explanation, and why Rashi brings this Midrash? The verse implies a lack of bitachon, and the answer is that's not the issue.
    – robev
    May 24, 2020 at 18:16

1 Answer 1


Rambam in Chapter Seven of Shemoneh Perakim writes:

It is not necessary for a prophet to have mastered all the ethical virtues to the point that he does not possess any shortcomings at all.

(Touger translation p. 43)

He then provides various examples of prophets having shortcomings, the last of which is:

And Jacob feared Esau.

(Touger translation p. 44)

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