Jacob has gone through quiet an ordeal, but now has a family.
He’s about to head back to the Land of Israel.
… “Jacob went on his way, and angels of G-d encountered him.” (Genesis, 32:2)
Here’s a word about angels.
Don’t get your hopes up. I don’t know that much about them myself!
In many religions they’re a very big deal. Their temples are full of paintings of angels.
Not in Judaism.
Jewish tradition tells us that they exist.
Angels are spiritual beings that serve a purpose in G-d’s world.
And sometimes angels appear to people as G-d’s messengers.
That’s about it!
… Jacob is one of those people that gets to see angels.
It’s got to be an awesome experience.
But look at how the Torah puts it.
“And angels of G-d encountered him.”
The angels encountered Jacob?
Shouldn’t it be the other way around?
That Jacob encountered the angels?
Picture a third grade science class that gets to visit Albert Einstein.
Would we say, “Einstein encountered a group of third graders?”
… It’s a fascinating Jewish perspective.
Who’s more spiritual an angel or a human being?
Because there’s no question about it.
Angels are totally spiritual. And we’re not.
We do have a neshama. A soul. The potential to be G-dly.
We’re also physical. With the same drives as animals.
And we can become pleasure seekers just like animals.
But G-d gave us the ability to do something an angel can’t do.
We can choose to do the right thing.
Human beings can create spirituality. An angel can’t.
We can become G-dly. An angel can’t.
… Jacob had the same challenges we have.
But he became great.
Became the founder of the Jewish people.
And for an angel?
Meeting Jacob was an encounter!
… We’re re not likely to ever meet an angel.
But the more acts of kindness we choose to do?
The more we choose to elevate our lives?
The less it matters!
All the best,