2 Chronicles 5-7
(Completion of the Temple)

May 6th

Produced by The Listening for God Ministry
Copyright 2016

Please refer to one or more Bible versions of your choice to read this section. We recommend that you read at least two versions for added understanding. For your convenience, we have provided six links below, each of which takes you directly to today's chapters in a specific version:

Key Verse

It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the Lord; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of musick, and praised the Lord, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the Lord;

- 2 Chronicles 5:13 (KJV)

Summary of Chapters

This trio of chapters records the completion and dedication of the temple in Jerusalem. Chapter 5 notes that the Levites brought the ark into the temple - thus avoiding the mistake encountered during David's first attempt to bring the ark to Jerusalem. Solomon or someone else had ensured that the rules had been followed regarding the carrying of the ark with poles held by Levites - no one else was authorized to hold the poles and no one was authorized to touch the ark.

In chapter 6, Solomon blessed the people. He then stood before the altar to give praise and thanks and ask for protection and salvation in a relatively long prayer. He presented a series of situations to God and preceded each description with a request for God to listen from heaven, for example this one:

He concluded the prayer by inviting God to dwell in the temple:

God came to Solomon at night, as noted in chapter 7, to say he would continue to protect him and his heirs as long as they follow him. But, the LORD said that if the people turn from him then he will "uproot Israel" and reject the temple.

Reflection and Application

Solomon appears to have inherited the gift of prayer from his father David. The prayer in chapter 6 is a good model for us because it is full of humility and praise. It is also crafted together in beautiful prose. We don't have to be as skilled as Solomon to worship God, but we should approach God with the same type of attitude and can study and appreciate the eloquence of this prayer and later ones written by Solomon. The prayer in chapter 6:14-41 demonstrates Solomon's confidence in God's unlimited capabilities. The author Oswald Chambers once addressed this topic in his book Daily Thoughts for Disciples, in which he said we should ask ourselves if we "believe Jesus Christ can do anything..." He continued by asking himself, "Am I as confident in his power as he is in his own.... If we believe in Jesus Christ, we can face every problem the world holds. (1)"

Solomon was king of a large empire stretching from present-day Iraq in the North to present-day Egypt in the South. The latitudinal boundaries extended from the Mediterranean Sea in the west to beyond the Jordan River in the East. As an aside, one of our friends who travelled to Israel recently told us that the name Jordan means "from Dan" because the river begins in the land of the tribe of Dan in northern Israel. Solomon was king of land on both sides of the river that flowed from Dan, yet recognized the sovereignty of God. He acknowledged that there is no other God and marveled that God should come to earth to dwell with mere humans because he is so great that even heaven cannot contain him (6:14-18).

What else can we learn from Solomon's examples in these chapters? We should dedicate our bodies the way Solomon dedicated the temple – in other words, commit our selves to God’s purpose. This is what it means when we say "our bodies are our temple" – not that we worship our own bodies but that we dedicate them to service.

One way to use our bodies is to continue to follow in Solomon's footsteps by building houses of worship. The picture shown on the website for today’s study captures a plaque commemorating the first Methodist church built in America. This church continues to exist on John Street in lower Manhattan, just a few blocks north of the Wall Street and a few blocks east of the World Trade Center site. The men and women who built this church followed God's call to build a house of worship and their legacy persists 350 years later. There are better known landmarks in this part of the city, but few speak more volumes regarding the humble dedication of a few forgotten souls. You can visit the church the next time you are in this part of New York City, and take a tour of their museum and church, or you can click the website link below to learn more about it: www.johnstreetchurch.org/

For further reflection on the placement of the ark and the long poles "still there today", see the following commentary: "Solomon Dedicates the Temple"

Questions and Prayers for Further Reflection

    Related Questions
    1. What is the heaviest object you have ever carried?
    2. How do you like to express your humility in front of God?
    3. In what ways is God looking to use your body for his purposes?
    Recommended Prayer
    Father in heaven, we acknowledge that you have unlimited power. We confess that we have been attracted by false idols, but are grateful that you are always ready to welcome us back and listen to us. Please help us to use our bodies to serve you.

    Suggested Prayer Concerns
    Music Directors


    (1) Chambers, Oswald, Men's Devotional Bible, New International Version, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, MI; 1993, p. 437

    Looking Ahead

    Tomorrow's reading: 2 Chronicles 8-11 (Beginning of the End of Wisdom)

    Comments and Questions
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