Day 147: Temple Worship
1 Kings 5:1-18 In the fourth year of his reign, Solomon commenced work on the Temple of Jerusalem. David had not been able to start the construction because of the constant warfare during his reign, but the peacetime enjoyed by Solomon allowed him to arrange for the necessary supplies and labor force to begin in earnest.
2 Chronicles 7:1-22 The solemn dedication rite shows the Levite priests as the chief ministers of the liturgy rather than Solomon. God reiterated his promise to keep the covenant as well as the punishment Israel would suffer if they disobeyed the Commandments and fell into idolatry. The Temple was a symbol of God’s protection of his people; likewise, its destruction later was a sign of Israel’s alienation from God.
Ch 8:1-18 This book serves as a hagiography (biography that idealizes its subject) of King Solomon, omitting much information reported in the two Books of Kings that might reflect poorly on his leadership or the moral rectitude of the monarchs of Israel. For example, no mention is made here of King Hiram’s dissatisfaction with the cities that Solomon gave him as payment for his assistance in the construction of the Temple. Here, the second palace built by Solomon is not a gift for his Egyptian wife, but rather was constructed out of respect for ritual purity since the royal palace was attached to the Temple and would have been defiled by the presence of a pagan woman.
Psalm 66 The Psalmist recalls God’s history of delivering Israel from its troubles, most notably from the oppression of the Egyptians, which give him hope for his own deliverance.
Through fire and through water: Although he “tested” Israel, the Lord remained faithful to his people. The nature of his own personal deliverance is not clear, but the psalmist clearly saw it as a continuity of God’s steadfast love for his people and the fruit of his own efforts to remain faithful to God’s covenant. (CCC 220)
(*The Didache Bible RSV-CE Ignatius Edition, 2006)
Key Event 40: First Temple Built (1 Kings 5:1-8:66)
Solomon builds the Temple, which replaces the portable tabernacle that accompanied Israel on its journey to the Promised Land. Like the tabernacle, the Temple recalls Eden, where Adam and Eve enjoyed fellowship with their Creator. As the dwelling place of God, the Temple is also the meeting point of heaven and earth.
It’s day 147 :)
We are roughly 7 days from our SECOND MESSIANIC CHECKPOINT with the Gospel of Mark
This is AWESOME because we will get the chance to walk through this Gospel in the middle of the whole story and jump ahead to Jesus
We will see how He is the fulfillment of EVERYTHING that God has wanted His people to know and to be
Now....on to the next one (on to the next one 😉)
This is one of those moments where 1 Kings and 2 Chronicles are CONNECTED but a little bit DISCONNECTED
They are talking about some of the same things but on a slightly different timeline
Yesterday we had King Solomon (Fr. Mike said King David but clearly he meant King Solomon, RIGHT??🤔) dedicate the great prayer
The Temple is built and dedicated
The Ark of the Covenant is there
This is where they are going to be worshiping
1 Kings Ch 5 we are back with Solomon collecting the materials for the Temple
So 1 Kings is a little bit BEHIND
2 Chronicles is a little bit AHEAD
So it can be a bit confusing but just keep moving forward
Solomon is still establishing the Temple in 1 Kings
It reminds us of the IMPORTANCE and the CENTRALITY of the Temple
Not only because that is where God’s presence would abide
But in 2 Chronicles Ch 7 we get the gift of hearing the prayer of dedication by Solomon
AND FIRE CAME DOWN FROM HEAVEN
THE SACRIFICES AND BURNT OFFERINGS WERE CONSUMED BY FIRE
THE GLORY OF THE LORD FILLED THE TEMPLE
This demonstrates the POWER OF GOD’S PRESENCE
The Temple is ESSENTIAL because God’s presence would abide there
That is absolutely clear
But it is also ESSENTIAL because that is where the PEOPLE would offer their WORSHIP
It is so CRITICAL to understand the IMPORTANCE and the NECESSITY of worshipping God as HE HAS ASKED US TO WORSHIP HIM
So in 1 Kings 5 we have Solomon working with Hiram, King of Tyre (Michelin or Goodyear, I wonder? 🤪)
Hiram was good buddies with King David and he praises the Lord even though he is not a Jew
He praises God that David had such a wise son
He helps him out with Cedars from Lebanon (great song by U2 by the way 😉)
He also provides laborers for building the Temple
There are a couple of interesting things about 2 Chronicles Chs 7 and 8
Solomon ends his prayer
Fire comes down from Heaven
The Glory of the Lord FILLS THE TEMPLE
So Solomon finishes construction of the HOUSE OF THE LORD, aka the Temple and HIS OWN HOUSE
The Lord appears a second time to Solomon at night
He appears to him and says, “Here is what I need you to know. I need you to know that if my people who are called by my name humble themselves and seek my face, then I will hear from Heaven. I will forgive their sins. I will heal their land”
Basically God is saying, “Whenever you are not faithful just remember I am faithful. Turn back to the Temple Worship. Turn back to this place. Turn back to my presence. Turn back to worship. Turn back to obedience of my Commandments and I will hear your prayers.”
Then God says to Solomon, “AS FOR YOU, if you walk before me as David your father walked, doing according to all that I have commanded you, keeping the statutes, I will be with you as I was with your father, David.”
And God continues, “BUT, if you turn aside and forsake my Commandments and statutes and go and serve other gods and worship them, then I will pluck you from the land.”
God is giving King Solomon a CLEAR COMMANDMENT
God has given Solomon WISDOM
So Solomon knows stuff, right?
God has also given him a DIRECT WARNING
STAY FAITHFUL TO ME
STAY CLOSE TO ME
AND I WILL BE WITH YOU
What we know is that Solomon WILL NOT DO THAT
In 2 Chronicles 8:11 “Solomon brought Pharaoh’s daughter up from the city of David to the house which he had built for her, for he said, ‘My wife shall not live in the house of David king of Israel, for the places to which the ark of the Lord has come are holy.”
So Solomon is keeping it separate, right?
He is keeping Pharaoh's daughter away because she is not part of the Covenant
She is part of the ALLIANCE between Israel and Egypt, but not part of the Covenant belonging to the Lord
When Solomon married Pharaoh’s daughter, he was opening himself up for IDOLATRY
Guess what’s going to happen?
Rather than Pharaoh’s daughter being brought into the People of Israel
Rather than Pharaoh’s daughter being brought into the Covenant
Rather than Pharaoh’s daughter learning about the ONE TRUE GOD, THE GOD ABOVE EVERY OTHER GOD
Solomon thinks keeping her outside the Temple is a good thing
Rather than let HER worship her false gods of Egypt, why didn’t he BRING HER IN TO WORSHIP THE ONE TRUE GOD, THE LORD GOD??
Solomon DOES NOT DO THIS
Also, we notice that Solomon has a lot of STUFF
THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS OF CHARIOTS
THOUSANDS OF HORSEMEN AND HORSES
Solomon may be WISE
God even SPEAKS TO HIM in his prayers
Solomon did what he was WARNED NOT TO DO
Remember, the Temple was the place of God’s PRESENCE and also the place of WORSHIP
Remember, the kind of worship and sacrifice that God desires is OBEDIENCE
And while Solomon was wise and knows more than anybody, he is not willing to be OBEDIENT
Maybe that is one of our downfalls as well
Yeah, we KNOW, but we just don’t WANT to
We know what God WANTS, we just don’t want to do what God WANTS
We may have a “good reason” to be that way
Solomon maybe thought there was peace now, but maybe not in the future so grab those horses
Solomon maybe thought there were good relations with the nations around them, but maybe it won’t always be that way so marry the Pharaoh’s daughter
This may have SEEMED wise
But it wasn’t OBEDIENT
If we want to LOVE God then we have to be OBEDIENT TO GOD
THERE IS NO OTHER WAY to love God than to OBEY HIM
The two ways we love God is through OBEDIENCE and LOVING OUR NEIGHBOR
Here is Solomon on the road AWAY from obedience to God and AWAY from God
Even though he was WARNED
All of us have been taught as well
So ask the Lord to help you to be FAITHFUL
Ask the Lord to help you to be OBEDIENT TO HIS COMMANDMENTS even when it seems there is something wise elsewhere
If it is not OBEDIENT, then we don’t want to do it
We can’t do this on our own
We have REBELLIOUS hearts
We have DISOBEDIENT hearts
Sweet Mother Mcree if FR. MIKE has a REBELLIOUS, DISOBEDIENT HEART, what does that say about the rest of us???
PRAY FOR EACH OTHER
PRAY FOR FR. MIKE
Prayer by Fr. Mike: “Father in Heaven we give you praise. You do hear our prayers. God, every time we talk to you, Lord, you hear our voices. You know the longing of our hearts. You know the depth of our prayer. You also know our distraction. You know how easily we can be distracted from loving you with our whole heart, with our whole mind, with our whole strength. You know how easily it is that we are turned aside from you. And so we thank you for being able to hear through all the noise, cutting through all of the distraction, cutting through all of the turmoil that our hearts can experience because you know our hearts. You not only know the peace in our hearts, you know the troubled hearts that live in our chests. And so we ask you, please once again, let your ears be open, let your eyes be open to see who we are, to see us truly and to hear our voice and to hear our prayers this day and every day. We make this prayer in Jesus’ name. Amen.”
1 Kg. 5:
5:14 This prefigures the nature of the universal Church.
5:22 Gentiles contributed to the construction of the Temple of God, foreshadowing the inclusion of the Gentiles to build up the Church.
2 Chron. 7:
7:1 Like 5:12-13, this scene is a prefiguration of Pentecost.
7:16 This verse prefigures both Mary and the Church: Mary in that Christ consecrated her to be his mother from all eternity, a place where his eyes and his heart would dwell, in her “Womb of Divine Incarnation” (Akathist to the Theotokos, Oikos 1); the Church in that Christ’s incarnate presence would be in the Church in the Eucharist forever.
My Study Color Code
■ Suffering, Martyrdom ■ Places ■ The Church, Sacraments, Divinity ■ Horticultural Imagery ■ People ■ Messianic Kingship ■ Sin, Death, Decay