Tisha b’Av-Kinah 12
Transcribed by Michael Beller: “My tent, which you planned even before creation.” According to the Midrash one of the people that appreciate the temple more than anyone else was Omri, one of the biggest rashas of the Jewish people. Omri is the only king of the northern kingdom (the ten tribes) who produces four generations of kings. So what did Omri do to have the merit of four generations of kings when every other king of the ten tribes averages one and a half generations before some sort of revolt or fiasco?
He built Shomrom, adding a city to Israel. So the Gemara says because he added a major city to Israel he was rewarded with four generations of kings, even though it was almost an exact replica of Jerusalem, with the exception that Jerusalem was built centered around the temple where as Shomrom was centered around a temple of idol worship. So he was rewarded for his high regard of Jerusalem as the perfect city, and his idea was that you could make any city a Jerusalem and people would be able to worship in the temple more easily than going to Jerusalem every time.
He believed that you could turn every city in Israel into a Jerusalem, but God doesn’t allow it so he takes God out of the picture.
Even so his city was a representation of the greatness of living in Jerusalem, and the Gemara says that every city he built was a miniature Jerusalem. And in his cities no one spoke lashon harra because they felt the admiration and gift of living in such an amazing place that they had the dignity and respect to not speak lashon harra. The only issue is that the temple was Omri’s temple and not Hashem’s.