April 24, 2006
Read 1 Kings 8
In Today's Reading:
Ark brought into the Temple; glory of the Lord fills the Temple; Solomon's sermon, prayer, and dedication
The day had arrived for the dedication of the glorious Temple in Jerusalem. Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel . . . in Jerusalem, that they might bring up the Ark of the Covenant of the LORD out of the city of David, which is Zion. . . . the priests brought in the Ark of the Covenant of the LORD unto . . . the Most Holy Place (I Kings 8:1,6). The Ark is where the presence of God dwelt above the Mercy Seat. There was nothing in the Ark save the two tables of stone, which Moses put there at Horeb. . . . And when the priests were come out of the Holy Place . . . the glory of the LORD. . . filled the House of the LORD (8:9-11). The people stood in the courtyard and worshiped the Lord at the dedication of the Temple.
Solomon offered a sacrifice . . . unto the LORD, two and twenty thousand oxen, and an hundred and twenty thousand sheep. So the king and all the children of Israel dedicated the House of the LORD (8:63). The word "sacrifice" does not mean "a great loss." A sacrifice to the Lord is never a deprivation but is a gift of something dedicated to the Lord. However, sacrifices are an abomination if they don't represent an expression of our true inner devotion to the Lord. Solomon prayed the longest recorded prayer in the Bible as he praised God for His faithfulness as the One who keepest covenant and mercy with Thy servants that walk before Thee with all their heart ( 8:22-23).
The Israelites were chosen to let the world know there is only One True God. Solomon prayed: That all people of the earth may know Thy Name, to fear Thee, as do Thy people Israel. Then he . . . blessed . . . Israel . . saying. . . . 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 (8:43,55,58,60).
The One True God includes all three persons of the Trinity: God the Father, Jesus, who is God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. A Christian's daily conversation and conduct should express love and loyalty to the One True God. For there is one God, and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus (I Timothy 2:5-6).
8:2 Ethanim (later called Tishri) = September/October; 8:37 blasting = blight; 8:47 bethink themselves = learn their lesson and change their minds.
As the perfect Temple of God before whom all kings of the earth one day must bow (I Kings 8:54; John 2:19-21). Wherefore God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a Name which is above every name (Philippians 2:9-10).
Pray for The International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts in memory of Eiken McPherson · Staff: Mike Moore · Government Official: Rep. Jack Kingston (GA) · Country: Sierra Leone (5 million) in western Africa · Major language: English · Increasing restrictions on Christian work in some areas · 50% belief in river spirits, medicine men, and witchcraft; 39% Muslim; 7% Protestant; 2% Roman Catholic · Prayer Suggestion: Pray for the Lord to give you the right words to share Christ with others (Matthew 10:18-20).
Optional Reading: Acts 25
Memory Verse for the Week: I Kings 2:3