Parsha Pekudei

Creation and the Tabernacle


As we come to the end of Exodus we complete the narrative and description of the Tabernacle. The language the Torah uses surprisingly resonates with the language of Creation. In both cases the Torah uses similar phrases “And He saw the work that had been done,” (39.4) “And the work was completed,” (39.32 & 40.33) “And He blessed them,” (39.43).

In the case of Creation these terms are used of God. In the case of the Tabernacle they are used of Moses. I understand this to mean that God in His way decided on the creative process and the sort of world we have, with all its gifts and natural resources. Our challenge as humans was and is not to destroy it, to over use, to degrade the universe He has created.

Similarly with the houses and structures we make, we design them to conform to good practice, to Gods laws. The Torah we have is a covenant between God and us to manage the world and our own lives according to “best practices.” The Tabernacle mirrors creation in terms of representing society. Society should match the creation of the physical world. To complete it. Like Shabbat it adds that extra dimension of spirituality.

The trouble is that we humans often tend to degrade and misuse our own gifts and religion too. Whether it is God’s house or our own we must take good care of it.