Menachem Bluming Muses: Why Jacob Lied

It is a perplexing story in the Torah. Jacob fools his father to think that he is Esau in order to receive the blessing that his mother believes he would be able to actualize far better in this world.

Just about every commentator questions: what could possibly justify such a lie?!

One approach that is taken is hinted to in Yitzchak’s unexpected response when he finds out that he was tricked. He says, “and blessed shall he be”. Instead of telling Esau I retract the blessing from Jacob because I gave it to him mistakenly and instead I transfer the blessing to you, instead he says the blessing will remain with Jacob.


Jacob understood that what his father really wanted was a child who could don the garbs of Esau without losing the voice of Jacob. It is that unique combination that is capable of bringing the spiritual message of Abraham and Isaac into a difficult world. Ultimately although Yitzchak was duped he was thrilled to be tricked because it showed him that his son could garb those garments of Esau without losing the voice of Jacob and that is exactly the right conduit for the blessing that Isaac wanted to relay.

When in your secular life you wear the garb of everyone else and yet within those garbs you do not lose your Jewish voice, you are not only a beneficiary of that blessing but you are the next carrier of the torch bringing that blessing forward.

Mendel (Menachem) Bluming see Talmud Bava Metziah 59 where G-d declares (in delight) “My children have bested me!”

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