In this portion we find details of the covenant entered into between God and Israel. Since the relationship is all-inclusive, we find rules pertaining to social conduct, morality, ethics, civil and criminal law, and ritual concerns. Like the Ten Commandments, the source of these rules is divine. The legal material set forth here is not a code in the strict sense, since there are significant subjects not touched upon. (These subjects are, however, dealt with elsewhere in the Torah.) On the other hand, the material does make clear that God’s demands of His people cover matters of conscience as well as matters usually subject to juridical control. The portion concludes with an account of the ratification of the covenant, and Moses ascends Mt. Sinai to remain there for 40 days and nights for the purpose of writing down the specific details. Thus, the freedom gained at the Exodus has now been confirmed and institutionalized in law. The next step will be to create a physical institution that will serve as the embodiment and reminder of the experience at Sinai.