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Rationalist Judaism

YU Torah Online

Saturday, September 3, 2011 "ccording to one view (Rashi’s), work on the Mishkan didn’t begin until after Moses had come down from the mountain. So how is it possible that Moses built the ark before he went up, since the ark is part–the centerpiece!–of the Mishkan? Answer: There were two arks, one that went out to war and one that stayed in the camp. This was the latter.

Ramban, unsurprisingly, disagrees: “This is a sole opinion. Throughout the Talmud, the Rabbis’ consensus view was consistent: There was one ark. The second tablets and the remnants of the first tablets were both put into the ark… This ark that Moses made: when Bezalel made his ark (the one that would enter the Mishkan), Moses buried his ark, according to the law regarding holy objects.”"

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