Father Jacob: A Godly Being?
There is something extremely puzzling in this week’s Torah portion. Father Jacob commands his son Joseph not to bury him in Egypt but rather together with his fathers (in the Cave of Machpelah). Commenting on the words “Do not bury me in Egypt” (Genesis 47:29), Rashi writes: “So that the Egyptians don’t make me into an idolatry” (Genesis Rabbah). One wonders why the Egyptians would be so inclined to idolatrize Jacob. After all, Jacob (unlike his son Joseph) was not a ruler of Egypt. Usually, only kings of Egypt would be deified after their death.