Read 1 Kings 8
The Temple is finally finished. The priests carry in the Ark and other sacred items; Solomon prays. The cloud of the glory of the Lord fills the House as trumpet players and singers with cymbals . . . psalteries and harps . . . were as one (II Chr. 5:12-13).
This unusually long prayer was given by King Solomon as he stood before the Altar of the Lord in the presence of all the congregation of Israel, and spread forth his hands toward heaven: And he said, Lord God of Israel, there is no God like Thee, in heaven above, or on earth beneath, who keepest covenant and mercy with Thy servants that walk before Thee with all their heart (I Kin. 8:22-23). Solomon said that Jehovah can never be compared with other gods, but must be recognized as the only living and personal God. He is the source of all physical and spiritual life, and He has power to provide for and protect all who love and honor Him. The consciousness of sin and the need for forgiveness held a prominent place in this prayer. Cause them to turn from their sin, when Thou afflictest them (8:35).
Before his prayer was finished, he was kneeling down upon his knees (II Chr. 6:13). Hear Thou in heaven Thy dwelling place . . . that all people of the earth may know Thy Name. . . . That He may incline our hearts unto Him, to walk in all His ways, and to keep His Commandments. . . . That all the people of the earth may know that the Lord is God, and that there is none else (I Kin. 8:43,55,58,60).
Solomon knew well that there is only one God and that He looks upon the heart, for he emphatically proclaimed: Let your heart therefore be perfect with the Lord our God (8:61). The word perfect implies wholeheartedness and single-mindness. God looks upon men's hearts and knows whether or not their prayer is the result of a mere passing emotion or if they have truly turned to Him. We need only turn the pages of history to chapter 11 of the Book of Kings to confirm that truth. What a different picture the history of Solomon's kingdom would have been if he had been as true to the Lord as his marvelous prayer!
We need to search our hearts and make sure that it cannot be said of us: This people draweth nigh unto Me with their mouth, and honoureth Me with their lips; but their heart is far from Me. But in vain they do worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men (Matt. 15:8-9).
Thought for Today:
There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit (Rom. 8:1).
As the perfect Temple of God before whom all kings of the earth one day must bow (I Kin. 8:54; John 2:19-21). Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a Name which is above every name (Phil. 2:9).
8:2 Ethanim (later called Tishri) September/October; 8:37 blasting blight; 8:47 bethink themselves learn their lesson and repent.
Pray for International Broadcasts in memory of Letha Hash • Staff: Mike Moore • Government Official: Rep. Jack Kingston (GA) • Country: Cyprus (754,000) in the Middle East • Major languages: Greek and Turkish • No open evangelism or conversions to Christ • 75% Greek Orthodox; 19% Muslim; 1% Protestant; 1% Roman Catholic • Prayer Suggestion: Draw near to God in prayer with a true heart in assurance of faith (Heb. 10:22).
Optional Reading: Acts 25
Memory Verse for the Week: Psalms 119:12