Parallels to Creation

Feb 21st, 2011 by Rabbi Simcha Weinberg in Holidays, Portion of the Week
“Moses commanded that they proclaim throughout the camp, saying, ‘Man and woman shall not do more work toward the gift for the Sanctuary!’ And thep eople were refrained from bringing.” (36:6)

The Hebrew word for refrained is “Vayikalei” which sounds just like and looks just like, “Vayichal” which begins the paragraph about Shabbat in the story of Creation.

Although translated there as “And He (God) finished”, Rashi tells us that the word also means to refrain.

God did not finish the work of Creation, as much as He refrained from doing more. There is no limit to God’s Will or abilities. The cessation of work was an act of refraining from doing more. “I could do more, but I will stop,” just as it was for the people building the Mishkan.

As with God in the story of the first Shabbat, the people could have done more. They wanted to do more, but they refrained, they held back at Moshe’s command. The people were truly emulating Creation as they built the Mishkan.

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