I heard that Jerusalem is alluded to in parshas Vayishlach. Can anyone help me find out where?

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    – mbloch
    Nov 30, 2017 at 8:15
  • 3
    This seems like a riddle
    – Double AA
    Nov 30, 2017 at 12:14
  • 1
    If we're only looking for an allusion, maybe ויבא יעקב שלם עיר שכם (Bereshit 33:18), with Jerusalem being referred to sometimes as Shalem (like in Tehilim 76:3, or Bereshit 14:18). Rashbam on 33:18 has Shalem being a city belonging to Shekhem (the person) (though probably not Jerusalem), so it's not that far fetched an idea.
    – Tamir Evan
    Nov 30, 2017 at 12:38
  • @DoubleAA it only seems so if you haven't seen the question before the edit :-> Then it is clear...
    – mbloch
    Nov 30, 2017 at 13:07

2 Answers 2


In Parashat va-Yishlach (Bereshit 35:1) it says:

ויאמר אלהים אל-יעקב, קום עלה בית-אל ושב-שם; ועשה-שם מזבח -- לאל הנראה אליך, בברחך מפני עשו אחיך.

And God said unto Jacob: 'Arise, go up to Beth-el, and dwell there; and make there an altar unto God, who appeared unto thee when thou didst flee from the face of Esau thy brother.'

Back in Parashat va-Yetze' (28:11), when describing the place Ya'aqov arrived at when fleeing from Esav, where God appeared to him (and that he later - in 28:19 - called Beit El), Rashi comments that it was in fact Har ha-Moriyah:

ויפגע במקום: לא הזכיר הכתוב באיזה מקום אלא במקום הנזכר במקום אחר, הוא הר המוריה שנאמר בו (לעיל כב ד) וירא את המקום מרחוק:

And he arrived at the place: Scripture does not mention which place, but [it means] the place mentioned elsewhere, which is Mount Moriah, concerning which it is said (Gen. 22:4):“And he saw the place from afar.” [From Pes. 88a]

And later, commenting on 28:22, Rashi even says that in 35:1-15 Ya'aqov fulfills the promise he made there:

והאבן הזאת אשר שמתי מצבה וגו' - כתרגומו: אהי פלח עלה קדם ה'. וכן עשה בשובו מפדן ארם, כשאמר לו (לקמן לה א) קום עלה בית אל, מה נאמר שם (שם יד) ויצב יעקב מצבה וגו' ויסך עליה נסך.

“And this stone, which I have placed as a monument, etc.” As the Targum paraphrases: “I will worship upon it before the Lord.” And so he did when he returned from Padan-aram, when He said to him, (35:1): “Arise, go up to Beth-el.” What is stated there? (ibid. verse 14): “And Jacob erected a monument, etc., and he poured a libation upon it.” [from Mishnath Rabbi Eliezer, ch. 14]

That's the closest to an allusion to Jerusalem in the Parashat va-Yishlach that I found.

  • Shkoiach tzadik.
    – Shfmwofna
    Nov 30, 2017 at 13:18

In 33:14 Jacob promises Esau to come to him in Seir. Rashi comments:

ואימתי ילך בימי המשיח שנאמר (עובדיה א) ועלו מושיעים בהר ציון לשפוט את הר עשו

Maybe the הר ציון of this verse is the reference to Jerusalem you heard about.

  • Shkoiach tzadik.
    – Shfmwofna
    Nov 30, 2017 at 13:01
  • Questionable, actually. Until David established Yerushalayim as a "city", I think all references to Yerushalayim (and I don't think there are that many, if at all. It was called Shalem and Yevus among Bet El) I think are specifically to Har Hamoria. Thus, even though there is a place called Har Tzion now that is part of Yerushalayim, I don't think it's a reference to Yerushalayim. For all we know, it might have been a different mountain having the same name.
    – DanF
    Nov 30, 2017 at 16:57
  • @DanF 1. The verse that refers to "Mt. Zion" was written a long time after Jacob's time. 2. I don't think it's at all reasonable to say there are two mountains called "Zion"
    – b a
    Nov 30, 2017 at 20:02

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