In scenes reminiscent of the original Revelation, we will rise in Shul this week to read the Ten Commandments; recreating the original acceptance of the Torah. As all Jews stood together at the base of Mount Sinai, G‑d first declaimed the Ten Commandments before presenting His people with a permanent memento carved onto two stone tablets.

When you examine these two tablets it would seem that the set of five Commandments, carved onto the first tablet, concern one's relationship with G‑d,

(1) Believe in Me.
(2) Have no other G‑d besides Me,
(3) Don’t take my name in vain.
(4) Keep my Shabbat.
(5) ?????

while the second set of 5 detail appropriate behaviour governing human interaction,

(1) Don't murder,
(2) Commit adultery,
(3) Steal,
(4) Tale bear, or
(5) Covet.

However, what about Number 5 — "Honor your parents"? How does that fit into context? Do I really pay homage to my folks as part of my pact to live a G‑dly life, or do we honor our parents in gratitude for their efforts on our behalf? If the latter, than surely the commandment is more appropriate to the latter group of Commandments?

I remember hearing a comedian describe his feelings on finally having children: "I was less willing to put up with fools. I was like, 'I don't need this, I can make my own people now.'"

While I must confess to using the line, it is not necessarily accurate. Parents don't make children on their own; they share the privilege with G‑d. Of the three partners in the miracle that is conception, G‑d is by far the senior associate.

When a couple choose to procreate, they invite into their lives the G‑dly capacity to create. In this decision to sow a spark of G‑dliness, called the soul, into the fertile soil of this physical world, they truly emulate G‑d.

A child who loves and respects his parents may indeed be demonstrating gratitude for the effort they expended in bearing and raising him, but the true encapsulation of respecting one's parents (and the reason why this commandment is allocated to the first tablet) is that by honoring them and their decision to partner G‑d in creation, one honors their senior partner — G‑d.