Highlights In Today's Reading:
Solomon offers 1,000 burnt offerings (1:6). A quick summary of Solomon's abundance (1:13-17). After four years Solomon begins to build the Temple (2:1; 3:2). The gigantic plan, workmen, and material for the project follow (chaps. 2 — 3), for great (awesome) is our God (2:5).
The first act of Solomon as king was to gather all the people to the ancient Tabernacle of the congregation of God, which Moses the servant of the Lord had made in the wilderness (1:3).
The Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream (I Kin. 3:5), saying: Ask what I shall give thee (II Chron. 1:7). In this dream Solomon asked for wisdom to lead the people of God. In response, the Lord let Solomon know this request would be granted. This is not Solomon's prayer to God, as is often thought. It was only a dream that God used in an attempt to get Solomon's attention as to what was most important. Solomon is credited with offering the largest sacrifices, building the most famous Temple, and becoming the most famous king; but, through this dream, the Lord was attempting to show Solomon that his real need was dependence upon Him.
Immediately following the offerings made at Gibeon, Solomon began purchasing chariots and horsemen: and he had a thousand and four hundred chariots, and twelve thousand horsemen, which he placed in the chariot cities (1:14-16; 9:25; I Kin. 4:26). But the largest burnt offering did not make up for his direct violation of the Word of God who commanded that the king shall not multiply horses to himself. . . . Neither shall he multiply wives to himself, that his heart turn not away: neither shall he greatly multiply to himself silver and gold (Deut. 17:16-17).
Solomon defiantly broke all three commandments and there is no record of his doing the fourth: He shall write him a copy of this Law in a book . . . and he shall read therein all the days of his life: that he may learn to fear the Lord his God, to keep all the words of this Law and these statutes, to do them (17:18-20).
Solomon amassed wealth to the extent that he made silver and gold . . . as plenteous as stones (II Chr. 1:15). We are saddened as we realize that he built all the buildings for his horses and chariots four years before he began to build the House of the Lord (3:1-2). We're even more disappointed to discover that Solomon loved many strange women who had no love for God but were idol worshipers. God had warned: Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods (I Kin. 11:1-2). Eventually, his heart was turned from the Lord God of Israel (11:9).
The heart is deceitful . . . and desperately wicked (Jer. 17:9). In the light of eternity, it is of utmost importance that we might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust (II Pet. 1:4).
Thought for Today:
Flowery words and elaborate displays can not take the place of a pure heart towards God.
By the thousand burnt offerings of Solomon (II Chr. 1:6). We can be thankful that the one perfect offering of Christ on the cross did away with the need for many and continual individual offerings. He died unto sin once (for all) (Rom. 6:10; Heb. 10:10-12,14).
2:2 told out =b> assigned; 2:7 cunning =b> skilled; can skill to grave =b> has skill to engrave; 2:14 find out every device =b> execute any design; 2:16 floats =b> rafts; 3:5 cieled =b> paneled; 3:10 of image work =b> fashioned by carving; 3:16 oracle =b> Holy of Holies.
Pray for Radio Sri Lanka Shortwave Broadcasts sponsored by Mrs. Pauline Moses • Staff: Ken Sharp • Country: Moldova (4.3 million) southeastern Europe • Major languages: Rumanian and Russian • Limited religious freedom • 66% Russian/Romanian Orthodox; 2.5% Catholic (Greek and Roman); 1.7% Protestant (mainly Baptist); 1.5% Jewish; .2% Muslim; 28.1% Agnostic/Atheist/Other • Prayer Suggestion: Raise your hands in praise and prayer, and worship the Lord (I Tim. 2:8).
Optional Reading: 1 Corinthians 8
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 6:21