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“And he said, your name will no longer be called Yaakov, but Yisrael.”

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The blessing which Eisav’s angel bestowed upon Yaakov inadvertently hurt his descendants until this very day. When an individual member of another sect or nation commits any form of transgression, he alone is held accountable. Communal responsibility is not imposed upon the entire nation for the offense of an individual. This rule, however, unfortunately does not apply to Bnei Yisrael. When a Jew – a “Yaakov”- sins, it is not viewed as a singular transgression of one person; the entire community of “Yisrael” is held responsible. Your name will no longer be called “Yaakov” – but “Yisrael” from now you are a nation with a concomitant communal responsibility.

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