In ancient societies, it was generally assumed that the first-born son would inherit the mantle of leadership from his father. Yet in one appalling moment Reuben’s hopes of one day assuming leadership over his family come crashing down. In telling this sordid story, the Torah offers a fascinating window into the destructive dynamics of Jacob’s family and the tortured inner life of one of his sons. But it also imparts a powerful lesson about just how much damage impulsiveness can do—and about why it disqualifies even those with good intentions from positions of leadership.
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|Reuben's Recklessness: What Disqualifies a Leader?|