Read 1 Kings 8

Highlights:

Ark brought into the Temple and dedicated; Solomon's prayer; his sacrifices.

So that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud: for the glory of the Lord had filled the House of the Lord (I Kin. 8:11).

Before the dedication of the Temple, it was essential that the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord must be first placed in the Holy of Holies (8:1-9). The Ark was the symbol of the presence of God. It contained the Ten Commandments which Moses placed there centuries before.

The tables of the Law represented the wisdom and the holiness of the One True God. It was following the placing of the Ark within the Holy of Holies that the glory of the Lord had filled the House of the Lord.

After Solomon dedicated the Temple, he stood before the Altar of the Lord and began to pray, but when he finished praying, he was on his knees (compare 8:22 and 8:54). The realization of the presence of God humbled wise Solomon as he acknowledged his unworthiness to stand before the most Holy God. But Jehovah's presence was even more fully manifested following Solomon's prayer.

First, the glory of the Lord came down in a cloud; then, fire came down from heaven, and consumed the Burnt Offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the Lord filled the House (II Chr. 7:1).

All the Israelites saw the fire and the glory of the Lord . . . they bowed themselves . . . and worshipped, and praised the Lord, saying, For He is good; for His mercy endureth for ever (7:3).

From the beginning of time, it was the plan of God to dwell among man and show forth His glory. Through man's sin, this plan seemingly failed. But God first carried out His plan through His chosen people, the Israelites. He dwelt in the midst of His people — first in the Tabernacle, and then in the Temple.

Israel was chosen by the One True God to let the world know that the blessings of God were available in abundance for everyone who kept His Commandments (I Kin. 8:25) — for Jehovah is the God of all people and will do, and give to every man according to his ways (8:39-42; Ex. 22:21; Lev. 25:35; Num. 15:14-16; Deut. 10:19; 31:12).

The one supreme purpose of God was that all the people of the earth may know that the Lord is God, and that there is none else (I Kin. 8:60). And now He dwells within the hearts of all Christians.

Ye are the temple of the Living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people (II Cor. 6:16).

Thought for Today:

The holiness of God shows the vileness of sin.

Christ Revealed:

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).

Word Studies:

8:2 Ethanim (later called Tishri), September/October; 8:37 blasting, blight; 8:47 bethink themselves, learn their lesson and repent.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for International Broadcasts in memory of Letha Hash • Staff: Mike Moore • Government Official: Rep. Jack Kingston (GA) • Country: Brunei (400,000) on the northern coast of Borneo • Major languages: Malay and English • Limited religious freedom • 66% Muslim; 19% Chinese religions; 6% animist; 4% Protestant; 4% Roman Catholic • Prayer Suggestion: Pray that your life will be a good testimony to others, even when faced with opposition (I Pet. 2:12).

Optional Reading: Acts 25

Memory Verse for the Week: John 13:33