If it’s true what the Rav said tonight that a mother can have such an important influence on a child’s spiritual development, why did Eisav turn out so bad? Why didn’t Rivka’s righteousness make Eisav a better person?
And what about his father’s righteousness? Do you also think that he wasn’t influenced by his father’s righteousness either?
And the answer is that he was influenced. He was influenced by both. Eisav was influenced by his mother and his father only that he didn’t utilize the influence. Eisav didn’t have to be a rasha. You see that Yaakov utilized the influence and became very great. And Eisav, wasn’t like you think, a wicked fellow like – I don’t want to say like who because I don’t want to insult Eisav. Eisav is only blamed for not utilizing what he should have utilized. He had the opportunity to use the influence of his mother and father and he didn’t use it enough. And that’s why he’s blamed. A very great blame! That’s why he’s called a rasha. To grow up in such a great house and waste that opportunity of learning from these two great personalities, Yitzchok and Rivka! What a terrible waste.
He was a fine young man Eisav, only that in such a house, if you didn’t become more than what you are, then it’s a tragedy. Make no mistake about it; that was the great sin of Eisav – compared to what he should have been, he was an Eisav. I know that others laugh when they hear this but I know this from my Rebbe zichrono livrocho.
That was the sin of Eisav! It’s a big mistake to think that a yeshiva man who is just as good as this Young Israel boy or this Po’el Hamizrachi boy can pat himself on the back. Oh no! You had opportunities. You have a rebbi. You have chaveirim. We expect you to daven better than the plain shtiebel yid. And if you’ll daven with the same speed that he does, it’s a condemnation for you. Because you had better opportunities than he had and you should know better. We have to know that there’s a very big din v’cheshbon on those who don’t make use of their opportunities.
So it’s not a question of his mother or his father. Mother or father, it’s the same thing. Yitzchok and Rivka did what they had to do. It’s only a question of Eisav not using the opportunities that he was given.
TAPE # E-222