Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Why Did G-d Create Us?
Rabbi A. Moss
Rabbi, I have two questions for you: 1) Do you make up these questions, or do you receive them from real people? 2) If G-d is perfect, why did He create us? A perfect being isn't missing anything, so why would He need us? And if He doesn't need us, is our life meaningless? Are we just some divine experiment?
Some questions are too deep to answer. It is beyond our limited understanding to reach a solution to all the mysteries of the universe, and they may always remain mysteries. So, I will have to skip your first question and only deal with the second.
You are absolutely correct: G-d, being perfect, was missing nothing before creation. There is no possible need that this world can fulfill for Him. He doesn't need anything. Therefore, creating us must not have been in order to fulfill a need. It was something G-d chose to do. He doesn't need us, He wants us.
What does G-d want from us? The one thing He didn't have before creation was a relationship, He was alone. What He wanted from this world, was a relationship with free beings. So He created us, and gave us ways of connecting to Him - the commandments.
But we can't say that He needed this relationship with us. He may have been alone before creation, but he was still G-d - perfect and missing nothing. He didn't need a relationship, He wanted it.
Does this make our life unnecessary? Did G-d make us just for fun?
No, on the contrary. When you have a relationship with someone just because you need them (such as a cleaning lady, or a family doctor), then when that need has been fulfilled, the relationship ends. Your connection is dependent on them providing a service, and will only last as long as that service is needed.
But when you have a relationship with someone, simply because you want to, because you have chosen to connect to them, then that bond is intrinsic. You don't love them because of what they do for you, you love them for who they are - and that is forever.
G-d doesn't need us; He wants us. He didn't give us commandments because He needs them to be fulfilled, but because He wants us to relate to Him.
If we were created because G-d needed us to do something, then we would be secondary to that mission - once the mission was fulfilled, we would be disposed of. But G-d needs nothing; He chose to bring us into being as a pure act of love.
That is the test of true love: if my beloved could no longer provide me with my needs, would I still love them just for being my beloved? By creating us, G-d answered yes.