In the first census of Bnei Yisrael, in Parashat Bamidbar, Ephrayim is presented as the first and foremost among the sons of Rachel, with their banner being in Ephrayim’s name and Menashe and Binyamin joining in (Bamidbar 2:18-24). While the encampment order remains in our parasha, when the sons of Yosef are counted, Menashe comes before Ephrayim.
The connection between a husband and wife is created by kiddushin (marriage), which comes from the root of kedusha, sanctity. This enables them to build a home where the Divine Presence dwells, as Chazal teach us: “If a husband and wife merit it, the Divine Presence is between them; if not, fire consumes them” (Sota 17a).
We have discussed in the past Chazal’s identification of Eliyahu HaNavi as Pinchas. Now, we shall discuss the general, fundamental question as to the methodology used in making such determinations. Do Chazal base the statement that Ploni is the same person as Almoni on tradition, or are their conclusions based on tools of analysis of Tanach that are parallel to the 13 principles of learning halacha from the p’sukim? In our new book, Tzofnat Yeshayahu (on Sefer Yeshayahu – see pg. 17) we call the phenomenon of the same words appearing in the two contexts whose characters are to be equated, “footnotes.”