1Kings 6-8

Sunday Evening Bible Study

June 2, 2002


When Solomon took over the reign over Israel from his father David, there was a brief period where he needed to take care of his enemies in order to establish his authority as king. After that was done, Solomon had an amazing encounter with God in a dream. God told him to ask God for whatever Solomon wanted. Solomon asked for wisdom, and God gave it to him.

We’ve had a glimpse of how powerful, large, and prosperous Solomon’s kingdom was. It was the pinnacle of the Israeli empire. We’ve seen Solomon establish a labor agreement with Hiram, the king of the Phoenician city of Tyre. Their agreement is to have Hiram’s people help Solomon in the building of a Temple. The preparation work began and we see the beginning of construction on the Temple in Jerusalem.

Though Solomon would build the Temple, he didn’t have a hand in the design of the Temple. The design of the Temple was given to Solomon by his father David, who received it from the Lord.

(1 Chr 28:19 KJV) All this, said David, the LORD made me understand in writing by his hand upon me, even all the works of this pattern.

There is purpose in the design of the Temple.
There are lots of people who have all kinds of ideas as to what the design means. I found all sorts of very strange articles on the web about the Temple and it’s design. Apparently the Masons place great importance in Solomon’s Temple and claim that some of their secret rituals date back to Solomon (highly unlikely). I found another site of some guy who made a big deal that the Temple of Solomon was fashioned to look like a big human body. He had some pretty weird ideas, and his pictures of the Temple were incredibly distorted to fit his idea.
God’s purpose of the Temple was to give mankind a picture of Heaven, the place where He dwells.
The entire design is similar to Moses’ Tabernacle, only on a grander scale. The Tabernacle was clearly a smaller model of heaven:

(Heb 8:5 NLT) They serve in a place of worship that is only a copy, a shadow of the real one in heaven. For when Moses was getting ready to build the Tabernacle, God gave him this warning: "Be sure that you make everything according to the design I have shown you here on the mountain."

As we look at the building of the Temple, we’ll see the parallels with the visions of heaven that several of the prophets have had.

1Kings 6

:1 And it came to pass in the four hundred and eightieth year after the children of Israel were come out of the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of Solomon's reign over Israel, in the month Zif, which is the second month, that he began to build the house of the LORD.

Charles Ryrie says the date is 967 B.C.

Zif – the second month (April-May)

When you are piecing together a chronology of the Old Testament, this is one of those markers that ties the kings into the events of Genesis and Exodus.

This locks the fourth year of Solomon’s reign to the Exodus.

Another key verse is found in:

(Exo 12:40-41 KJV) Now the sojourning of the children of Israel, who dwelt in Egypt, was four hundred and thirty years. {41} And it came to pass at the end of the four hundred and thirty years, even the selfsame day it came to pass, that all the hosts of the LORD went out from the land of Egypt.

This ties the Exodus in with the life of Jacob.
The age of Jacob when he came to live in Egypt is found in:

(Gen 47:9 KJV) And Jacob said unto Pharaoh, The days of the years of my pilgrimage are an hundred and thirty years: few and evil have the days of the years of my life been, and have not attained unto the days of the years of the life of my fathers in the days of their pilgrimage.

From there, it’s not too hard to track dates from Jacob backward all the way to Adam when you are reading through Genesis.

:2 And the house which king Solomon built for the LORD, the length thereof was threescore cubits, and the breadth thereof twenty cubits, and the height thereof thirty cubits.

The size of the temple itself is 60x20x30 cubits, or, 90x30x45 feet.

:3 And the porch before the temple of the house

In front of the Temple, there was a porch.

:4 And for the house he made windows of narrow lights.

lights – an architectural term for “windows”.

:5-10 against the wall of the house he built chambers round about … the oracle

chambers – the walls of the temple were surrounded by small rooms. The rooms were stacked three high. There was a winding staircase (v.8) that connected each story.

oracle – another name for the Holy of Holies

Layout of the Temple


One suggested cutaway view of the Temple

:7 And the house, when it was in building, was built of stone made ready before it was brought thither: so that there was neither hammer nor ax nor any tool of iron heard in the house, while it was in building.

The stones were cut to size at the quarry and then transported to the temple site where they were assembled.



I like to see this as a picture of how ministry ought to be done. When you come to do ministry, you ought to have the “stones” prepared ahead of time. If you teach a Bible Study, you shouldn’t be making it up as you are standing in front of the people. They shouldn’t have to listen to the pounding of the axes and the grinding of the saws.

:11-13 God speaks to Solomon

:11-13 …if thou wilt walk in my statutes …then will I perform my word with thee

God puts conditions on Solomon.

If Solomon will stay faithful to the Lord, then the Lord will bless Solomon.

:14-22 Finishing the house

:14 So Solomon built the house, and finished it.

The temple stood until 586 BC, when it was destroyed by the Babylonians.

Seventy years later the Jews would rebuild the temple under Ezra’s leadership. In Jesus’ day, Herod the Great would refurbish Ezra’s temple and expand it. The Romans would destroy the second temple in AD 70.

:18 And the cedar of the house within was carved with knops and open flowers: all was cedar; there was no stone seen.

(1 Ki 6:18 NLT) …the paneling was decorated with carvings of gourds and open flowers.

All the stone was covered with carved cedar. You could not see the stone.

:21 So Solomon overlaid the house within with pure gold: and he made a partition by the chains of gold before the oracle; and he overlaid it with gold.

(1 Ki 6:21 NLT) Then he overlaid the rest of the Temple's interior with pure gold, and he made gold chains to protect the entrance to the Most Holy Place.

Inside the Temple, all of the cedar was then covered with gold.

:23-30 Cherubim

:23-28 And within the oracle he made two cherubims of olive tree, each ten cubits high.

Inside the Holy of Holies, Solomon made two HUGE angelic beings.

The Mercy Seat, the lid to the Ark of the Covenant, also had two cherubim molded on its lid.

These ones are huge. Together, standing side by side, they fill up the entire width of the Holy of Holies.

The wooden statues are overlaid with gold.

What do they look like?

Sometimes we think of “cherubim” as little tiny baby-faced angelic beings that shoot arrows.

I’ve seen Jewish renditions of the cherubim that look like old men with long beards.

There are cherubim in heaven described by John (and mirrored by Ezekiel) look like:

(Rev 4:7-8 KJV) And the first beast was like a lion, and the second beast like a calf, and the third beast had a face as a man, and the fourth beast was like a flying eagle. {8} And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying, Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.

:29 he carved all the walls …with carved figures of cherubims …

Inside the Temple, the walls were covered with carvings of angelic beings

:30 And the floor of the house he overlaid with gold

The floor was covered with gold.

In heaven, the streets will be paved with gold

(Rev 21:21 KJV) …and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass.

:31-38 Doors

:31 for the entering of the oracle he made doors of olive tree

The doorway between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies was covered both with doors made of olive wood as well as by a curtain (2Chron. 3:14).

:38 And in the eleventh year…he seven years in building it.

It takes Solomon seven years to finish construction of the temple. Depending on what time of the month he started and finished, you could make a point that he took seven years and seven months.

1Kings 7

:1-12 Solomon’s house

:1 But Solomon was building his own house thirteen years, and he finished all his house.

Solomon’s own “house” was a complex of buildings which included

The house of the forest of Lebanon (something like an armory) (10:16-17)

A colonnade (v.6)

A throne room with a gold and ivory throne (10:18-19)

A house for Pharaoh’s daughter (v.8)


Put God first.

Solomon builds the Temple first, and then builds his own house. We know he doesn’t build them at the same time because we are told that in total he was building for twenty years (1Ki. 9:10).
Solomon sets an example. Put God’s things ahead of your own.
The Israelites in Haggai’s day were the ones who were responsible for building the second Temple after the return from Babylon. But they were rebuked because they built their own houses before building God’s house.

(Hag 1:4 NLT) "Why are you living in luxurious houses while my house lies in ruins?

:2-5 The House of the Forest of Lebanon

This would be a place where weapons were kept. This building gets its name because it is covered entirely with cedar wood from Lebanon.

:6-12 Other Buildings

:7 Then he made a porch for the throne where he might judge

This would be his “throne room”.

:8-12 And his house where he dwelt … an house for Pharaoh's daughter …

Solomon builds a house where he will live as well as a separate house for Pharaoh’s daughter. These buildings will be made out of stone covered with cedar.

:13-22 Hiram & Pillars

:13 And king Solomon sent and fetched Hiram out of Tyre.

This Hiram is not the same as the man who was the king of Tyre, but who had the same name. This was a Jewish man who was living in Tyre.

:14 a worker in brass: and he was filled with wisdom, and understanding, and cunning to work all works in brass


God uses skilled people

I think you could even make the point that God gives skills to skilled people.
Do you have special skills? Maybe things that aren’t necessarily “spiritual”? God would like to use your skills to further His kingdom.

:15 For he cast two pillars of brass, of eighteen cubits high apiece: and a line of twelve cubits did compass either of them about.

We have a record of one of Hiram’s bigger projects, the making of the two huge pillars out of bronze that will stand in front of the Temple. They were 27 feet tall, and 18 feet in circumference.

:21 called the name thereof Jachin …Boaz.

The pillars are given names.

JachinYakiyn – “He will establish”

BoazBo‘az – “fleetness” or “in him is strength”

It appears that there are pillars in heaven as well. Jesus writes to the overcomers in the Church of Philadelphia:

(Rev 3:12 KJV) Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name.

A pillar is something that holds the roof up, adding stability and strength to a building.
Somehow, God is going to make us a part of the strength of heaven.

:23-26 Brass Sea

:23 And he made a molten sea

Next Hiram makes the bronze “sea”. This was equivalent to the “laver” that was at the Tabernacle, but only much larger. Instead of a bathtub of water, this was a small swimming pool. It held 11,600 gallons of water, and was apparently used to supply water to the smaller, portable “lavers”.

It was 45 feet in circumference, and was cast in as a single piece. The walls were about 3 inches thick.

It was supported on the backs of twelve bronze oxen, which all faced outward.

In heaven, there isn’t a “brass sea”, but a “glassy sea”.

Exterior depiction showing the bronze sea and a laver:

Lever and Outside of Temple

:27-39 Portable Lavers

:27 And he made ten bases of brass … :38 lavers of brass

Next, Hiram made ten smaller washing basins (lavers). Each laver sat on a base that had wheels which made them portable. Fiver were to be located on one side of the temple courtyard, five were on the other side. Each laver held 240 gallons of water. These were used by the priests to wash themselves and to wash the sacrifices.

The Jewish scholars who run the Temple Institute in Jerusalem (the people who are preparing to rebuild the Temple) have already built a copy of a laver. It looks like a large coffee pot with several spouts and valves coming out of it. They have determined that it was supposed to be built out of copper, not brass.

:40-47 Complete list of Bronze work

:40-45 So Hiram made an end of doing all the work …

We are given a summary of all the things that Hiram made out of bronze for Solomon

:46 In the plain of Jordan did the king cast them, in the clay ground between Succoth and Zarthan.

The things made out of bronze were made by pouring the molten metal into molds made out of clay down

This was an area on the eastern side of the Jordan River, about 30 miles north of the Dead Sea.

Excavations have shown that this area was a center of metallurgy.

:47 And Solomon left all the vessels unweighed, because they were exceeding many: neither was the weight of the brass found out.

Solomon didn’t bother to keep track of how much bronze was used because they used so much.

:48-51 Complete list of Gold Work

:48 And Solomon made all the vessels that pertained unto the house of the LORD

We get an account of the things Solomon makes out of gold.

:49 And the candlesticks of pure gold, five on the right side, and five on the left, before the oracle, with the flowers, and the lamps, and the tongs of gold,

In the Tabernacle, there was a single candlestick (the Menorrah). In the Temple, everything was done on a larger scale, and so Solomon made ten candlesticks instead of one.

Everything that was to be used inside the building was made out of gold. Everything that was used outside the building was made of bronze.

:51 And Solomon brought in the things which David his father had dedicated; even the silver, and the gold, and the vessels, did he put among the treasures of the house of the LORD.

Solomon takes all this wealth that his father David had amassed over the years, the spoils of war, and places them inside the Temple, giving them to the Lord.


Where is your treasure?

Jesus said
(Mat 6:19-21 KJV) Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: {20} But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: {21} For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

It’s natural that our heart is drawn to the things that are important to us. If my car is something that is important to me, then I’ll spend time thinking about my car. If my 401K is important to me, I might spend some time worrying about the Stock Market.

If you put all your investments in heavenly things, then guess what kinds of things you’ll be thinking about?

1Kings 8

:1-11 Temple Worship begins

:1 that they might bring up the ark of the covenant of the LORD out of the city of David, which is Zion.

The Ark of the Covenant had been in a temporary tent that David had set up inside the borders of his city of Jerusalem. The Temple was built on a hill overlooking David’s Jerusalem. Eventually the city would be expanded to include the Temple Mount.


:2 And all the men of Israel assembled themselves un Solomon at the feast in the month Ethanim, which is the seventh month.

the feast – it would appear that this is the Feast of Tabernacles

(Lev 23:34 KJV) Speak unto the children of Israel, saying, The fifteenth day of this seventh month shall be the feast of tabernacles for seven days unto the LORD.

This was a Feast that had several purposes and several names.
It was called the Feast of Ingathering because it happened at the end of the harvest season, when all the crops had been harvested and stored for the winter.
It was called the Feast of Tabernacles because it was to remind the people how they were sustained for forty years in the wilderness, living in tents (tabernacles).

I think it’s interesting that Solomon waits until this Feast of Tabernacles to move the Ark from a “Tabernacle” into a permanent “House”.

Ethanim – also called Tishri (Sept.-Oct)

It has been eleven months since the completion of the Temple.

:4 and the tabernacle of the congregation

As we’ve mentioned before, Moses’ original Tabernacle had been separated from the Ark and had been located at Gibeon, where Solomon had his dream about God (1Ki. 3).

It seems that the Tabernacle is now dismantled and moved, so there is now finally a single place of worship in Israel. It was God’s desire that eventually there would only be a single place of worship (Deut. 12).

:8 And they drew out the staves, that the ends of the staves were seen out in the holy place before the oracle, and they were not seen without: and there they are unto this day.

The poles used to carry the ark were extra long, too long to fit in the Holy of Holies. I wonder if somebody forgot to measure it or if this was done on purpose. The poles could be seen by the priests who would be in the outer room, the “Holy Place”, but they couldn’t be seen by the people outside the Temple.

:9 There was nothing in the ark save the two tables of stone, which Moses put there at Horeb, when the LORD made a covenant with the children of Israel, when they came out of the land of Egypt.

It seems that earlier, the Ark also had two other items either inside it or next to it.

There had been a golden jar with some of the manna in it. Moses had been told to keep some of the manna for a witness to future generations:

(Exo 16:33-34 KJV) And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up before the LORD, to be kept for your generations. {34} As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept.

There was also Aaron’s rod that budded.

(Num 17:10 KJV) And the LORD said unto Moses, Bring Aaron's rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels; and thou shalt quite take away their murmurings from me, that they die not.

The writer to the Hebrews tells us that these things had been kept inside the Ark:

(Heb 9:4 KJV) Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant;

But for some reason, by Solomon’s day, the only thing that remained in the Ark was the two stone tablets with the Ten Commandments on them.

If Aaron’s rod and the manna pot were in the Ark, one suggestion is that the Philistines might have taken them, or else the men of Beth Shemesh since they had “peeked” inside the Ark.

:11 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.

We call this cloud of glory the Shekinah.

This had happened once before, when Moses first set up the Tabernacle as a place of worship.

(Exo 40:34-35 KJV) Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle. {35} And Moses was not able to enter into the tent of the congregation, because the cloud abode thereon, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle.

:12-21 Solomon’s message

:12 Then spake Solomon, The LORD said that he would dwell in the thick darkness.

(Exo 19:9 KJV) And the LORD said unto Moses, Lo, I come unto thee in a thick cloud, that the people may hear when I speak with thee, and believe thee for ever. And Moses told the words of the people unto the LORD.

Solomon knew from the Scriptures what was happening. This had all happened once before.

:22-30 Solomon’s prayer

:22 And Solomon stood before the altar …and spread forth his hands toward heaven:

The writer of Chronicles tells us a little bit more:

(2 Chr 6:13 KJV) For Solomon had made a brazen scaffold, of five cubits long, and five cubits broad, and three cubits high, and had set it in the midst of the court: and upon it he stood, and kneeled down upon his knees before all the congregation of Israel, and spread forth his hands toward heaven,

:23 And he said, LORD God of Israel, there is no God like thee, in heaven above, or on earth beneath,

This isn’t just saying that there are no other “gods” like the Lord, but there is no one at all like the Lord.


There is none like the Lord

There is this thought among some secular thinkers that God is just a figment of our imagination. They would say that God is just a product of our imagination. There can be some truth to this, because when people don’t pay attention to the True God, they will indeed make up an image of God that looks a lot like they do.
(Psa 115:1-9 KJV) Not unto us, O LORD, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake. {2} Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God? {3} But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased. {4} Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men's hands. {5} They have mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not: {6} They have ears, but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not: {7} They have hands, but they handle not: feet have they, but they walk not: neither speak they through their throat. {8} They that make them are like unto them; so is every one that trusteth in them. {9} O Israel, trust thou in the LORD: he is their help and their shield.
For us to relate to God, we inevitably end up thinking of Him in human terms. We call God our “Father”. Though He is our Father, He is not like your dad.
The Bible tells us that certain things make God “angry”. Yet for some of us, we can only relate to the word “anger” by thinking of people who have been irrational and hurtful in their anger.
The Bible tells us that God is love. Yet for some of us, the idea of “love” can be synonymous with abuse or betrayal. God is not like that.
There is nothing sinister or “dark” about God at all.

(1 John 1:5 KJV) This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all.

Be careful that you don’t form your ideas about God based on false assumptions. Be sure that you pay attention to the things that God has told us about Himself.
(Heb 1:1-3 NLT) Long ago God spoke many times and in many ways to our ancestors through the prophets. {2} But now in these final days, he has spoken to us through his Son. God promised everything to the Son as an inheritance, and through the Son he made the universe and everything in it. {3} The Son reflects God's own glory, and everything about him represents God exactly. He sustains the universe by the mighty power of his command. After he died to cleanse us from the stain of sin, he sat down in the place of honor at the right hand of the majestic God of heaven.

If you want to know more about what God is truly like, look at Jesus.

:23 who keepest covenant and mercy with thy servants that walk before thee with all their heart:

keepestshamar – to keep, guard, observe, give heed

covenant[email protected] – covenant, alliance, pledge

mercycheced – goodness, kindness, faithfulness

The Hebrew word hesed, used about 250 times in the OT. It means loyal, steadfast, or faithful love and stresses the idea of a belonging together of those involved in the love relationship. It speaks of God's faithful love even for His unfaithful people.

(Hosea 2:19 KJV) And I will betroth thee unto me for ever; yea, I will betroth thee unto me in righteousness, and in judgment, and in lovingkindness, and in mercies.


God is faithful

God keeps His promises
Solomon will say a little later,
(1 Ki 8:56 KJV) Blessed be the LORD, that hath given rest unto his people Israel, according to all that he promised: there hath not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant.

God promised peace

Le 26:6 And I will give peace in the land, and ye shall lie down, and none shall make [you] afraid: and I will rid evil beasts out of the land, neither shall the sword go through your land.

With Solomon’s reign, there came peace.

Joshua said,
(Josh 23:14 KJV) And, behold, this day I am going the way of all the earth: and ye know in all your hearts and in all your souls, that not one thing hath failed of all the good things which the LORD your God spake concerning you; all are come to pass unto you, and not one thing hath failed thereof.
Jesus has made us a promise.
(John 14:1-3 KJV) Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. {2} In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. {3} And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.

Do you think Jesus will keep this promise? He will come again.


We are not

While God is faithful, we are not.
The problems I have in my relationship with the Lord never comes from God being unfaithful, it always comes from my own unfaithfulness.

:24 and hast fulfilled it with thine hand, as it is this day.

An example of God’s faithfulness was right before them, the completed Temple. God promised David that his son would build the Temple, and now it has happened.

(2 Sam 7:13 KJV) He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever.

:25 that thy children take heed to their way

(1 Ki 8:25 NLT) For you said to him, 'If your descendants guard their behavior as you have done, they will always reign over Israel.'

:26 And now, O God of Israel, let thy word, I pray thee, be verified, which thou spakest unto thy servant David my father.


Count on God’s promises

Because God is faithful, you can count on Him to keep His promises. Solomon knows that God had promised his father David that he would always have a descendant to sit upon the throne of Israel, and he’s asking God to keep His word.
It seems as if God made two kinds of promises to David. On one hand, there was a conditional promise (1Ki. 8:25) that if David’s descendants followed the Lord, they would rule Israel.

We know that eventually the kingdom was destroyed by the Babylonians, because of the sins of the kings and the nation.

Yet God also made an unconditional promise to David as well (2Sam. 7:13), that he would have descendants who would rule Israel forever.

This is going to be fulfilled in Jesus Christ, the son of David, when He comes to establish His kingdom on earth. Despite our unfaithfulness, God will remain faithful.

God has another promise for you to count on –
(1 John 5:11-13 KJV) And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. {12} He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life. {13} These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.

God wants us to know for sure that we are His children. He doesn’t want us wavering back and forth, wondering if He could really love us.

We don’t need to be inviting Jesus into our heart every Sunday. In a sense, once is enough. He doesn’t intend on leaving you. We need to learn to thank Him for being there.

:27 But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded?

Even though Solomon has just finished building the Temple, he isn’t fooled by it. Even though the Temple will become known as “God’s House”, Solomon knows better. He knows that this Temple is much too small to be a house for God.


God is bigger than a Temple

How big is God to you?
(Isa 40:12 KJV) Who hath measured the waters in the hollow of his hand, and meted out heaven with the span, and comprehended the dust of the earth in a measure, and weighed the mountains in scales, and the hills in a balance?

God measured the heavens with the span of His hand. With the Hubble Space Telescopes new camera, scientists are able to look farther and farther into space. The “heavens” are quite a large place.

The center of the Omega Nebula, seen in this April 2002 image from the Hubble Space Telescope's Advanced Camera for Surveys, is also called M17 and the Swan Nebula. The star-forming region is 5,500 light-years away in the constellation Sagittarius. The colors are created by infant stars and glowing gas, cradled in a dark cloud of hydrogen.


The nebula NGC 2264, dubbed the "Cone," is a dark, sloping pillar of gas and dust in a star-forming region of the constellation Monoceros, 2,500 light-years from Earth. Radiation from hot, young stars, located above the top of this image, has eroded the nebula. The hydrogen gas thrown off from the pillar has been heated to a glow, creating the reddish halo around the Cone.

A light year is the distance that light can travel in a vacuum over the span of a year. It is approximately 5.878 trillion miles (5.878 x 1012 miles).
It seems to me that God must have pretty large hands to measure things in thousands and millions of light years. Right now they’re saying that the fringes of the observable universe is something like 10 billion light years away.
You usually only ask people to do things they are capable of.
I might ask one of my sons to clean up his room, but I won’t ask him to build a nuclear power plant.
God is pretty big. He has pretty big hands. Is there something you need to be asking Him? Jeremiah wrote,
(Jer 32:17 KJV) Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee:

:30 when they shall pray toward this place: and hear thou in heaven thy dwelling place:


God hears our prayers

Solomon is asking God to honor this Temple by paying attention to the prayers of people who pray towards the direction of the Temple.
From the time of Solomon to Jesus, God did indeed listen to the prayers of His people as they prayed towards Jerusalem. But with Jesus, things changed.
When Jesus met the woman at the well (John 4), she raised a question as to where God should be worshipped. Being a Samaritan, she thought that God was supposed to be worshipped on Mount Gerizim. She said,
(John 4:20-24 KJV) Our fathers worshipped in this mountain; and ye say, that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship. {21} Jesus saith unto her, Woman, believe me, the hour cometh, when ye shall neither in this mountain, nor yet at Jerusalem, worship the Father. {22} Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews.

The Samaritans had a ed, twisted form of Judaism. They didn’t know what they were doing. But the Jews had a pure form of worship, following the Scriptures.

{23} But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. {24} God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

The worship of God no longer has anything to do with location or direction of your prayers.

It has to do with your heart.

It has to do with whether you are coming to God with your heart and whether you are coming to God based on the truth of the Scriptures.

Are you coming to God through Jesus? Do you have God’s correct address?

Getting the Address Correct

A couple from Minneapolis decided to go to Florida for a long weekend to thaw out during one particularly icy winter. Because both had jobs, they had difficulty coordinating their travel schedules. It was decided that the husband would fly to Florida on a Thursday, and his wife would follow him the next day. Upon arriving as planned, the husband checked into the hotel. There he decided to open his laptop and send his wife a e-mail back in Minneapolis. However, he accidentally left off one letter in her address, and sent the e-mail without realizing his error. In Houston, a widow had just returned from her husband’s funeral. He was a minister of many years who had been ‘called home to glory’ following a heart attack. The widow checked her e-mail, expecting messages from relatives and friends. Upon reading the first message, she fainted and fell to the floor. The widow’s son rushed into the room, found his mother on the floor, and saw the computer screen, which read:

To: My Loving Wife

From: Your Departed Husband

Subject: I’ve Arrived!

I’ve just arrived and have been checked in. I’ve seen that everything has been prepared for your arrival tomorrow. Looking forward to seeing you then! Hope your journey is as uneventful as mine was.

P.S. Sure is hot down here!

Be sure the address is correct. We come to God through Jesus. We read earlier in John 14 how Jesus was going to prepare a place for us in heaven. He went on to say …
(John 14:4-6 NLT) And you know where I am going and how to get there." {5} "No, we don't know, Lord," Thomas said. "We haven't any idea where you are going, so how can we know the way?" {6} Jesus told him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one can come to the Father except through me.

:30 and when thou hearest, forgive.


God forgives sin

It seems that there is one thing that will keep God from hearing our prayers.
(Isa 59:1-2 KJV) Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: {2} But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear.
The Bible says,
(1 John 1:9 KJV) If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

:31-53 Things to forgive

:31-33 Oaths

:31 the oath come before thine altar in this house:

 (1 Ki 8:31-32 NLT) "If someone wrongs another person and is required to take an oath of innocence in front of the altar at this Temple, {32} then hear from heaven and judge between your servants--the accuser and the accused. Punish the guilty party and acquit the one who is innocent.

Solomon is asking God to make this Temple a place where people don’t get away with things.

:33-34 Forgiveness when enemies beat you down

:33 When thy people Israel be smitten down before the enemy

There will be times when God will allow Israel to be beaten by their enemies in battle as a judgment against some sin. Solomon asks that God would forgive that sin if the people will confess it to God.

:35-36 Drought

:35 When heaven is shut up, and there is no rain

Again, sometimes judgment may come in the form of drought. If the people will confess their sin, God will forgive.

:37-40 Any kind of jugdment

:37 If there be in the land famine …pestilence

There is a sense in which sometimes God allows bad things to happen as a result of our sin.

:39 for thou, even thou only, knowest the hearts of all the children of men


God knows our hearts

We may think that we can get away with things in front of people. But God knows.
God Is Missing
In a certain suburban neighborhood, there were two brothers, 8 and 10 years old, who were exceedingly mischievous. Whenever something went wrong in the neighborhood, it turned out they had a hand in it. Their parents were at their wits’ end trying to control them. Hearing about a minister nearby who worked with delinquent boys, the mother suggested to the father that they ask the minister to talk with the boys. The father agreed. The mother went to the minister and made her request. He agreed, but said he wanted to see the younger boy first and alone. So the mother sent him to the minister. The minister sat the boy down on the other side of his huge, impressive desk. For about five minutes they just sat and stared at each other. Finally, the minister pointed his forefinger at the boy and asked, “Where is God?” The boy looked under the desk, in the corners of the room, all around, but said nothing. Again, louder, the minister pointed at the boy and asked, “Where is God?” Again the boy looked all around but said nothing. A third time, in a louder, firmer voice, the minister leaned far across the desk and put his forefinger almost to the boy’s nose, and asked “Where is God?” The boy panicked and ran all the way home. Finding his older brother, he dragged him upstairs to their room and into the closet, where they usually plotted their mischief. He finally said, “We are in * B I G * trouble now!” The older boy asked, “What do you mean, * B I G * trouble ????” His brother replied, “God is missing and they think we did it.”

:41-43 The Stranger

:41 Moreover concerning a stranger

strangernokriy – foreign, alien. This is talking about the non-Israelite who comes a long way to worship the God of Israel.

Solomon asks God to listen to foreigners, Gentiles, who might come to God and pray. That includes us.

:44-45 During War

:44 If thy people go out to battle against their enemy …

They say there are no atheists in foxholes.  Solomon asks God to honor the prayers of the men in battle as they pray toward the Temple in Jerusalem.

:46-53 In Captivity

:47 Yet if they shall bethink themselves in the land whither they were carried captives…We have sinned, and have done perversely, we have committed wickedness;

There is something incredibly prophetic here about Solomon’s prayer.

There would be a day when God would send the nation into captivity.  The Babylonians would take the nation away to Babylon in 586 BC.

Solomon prays that if the people come to their senses while in captivity, and if the pray toward the land of Israel, that God would hear their prayers and restore them to the land.

The prophet Daniel took this promise seriously.
(Dan 9:1-5 KJV)  In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of the seed of the Medes, which was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans; {2} In the first year of his reign I Daniel understood by books the number of the years, whereof the word of the LORD came to Jeremiah the prophet, that he would accomplish seventy years in the desolations of Jerusalem. {3} And I set my face unto the Lord God, to seek by prayer and supplications, with fasting, and sackcloth, and ashes: {4} And I prayed unto the LORD my God, and made my confession, and said, O Lord, the great and dreadful God, keeping the covenant and mercy to them that love him, and to them that keep his commandments; {5} We have sinned, and have committed iniquity, and have done wickedly, and have rebelled, even by departing from thy precepts and from thy judgments:

It is 538 BC.  Daniel himself has been in captivity for 67 years.  Daniel has been studying Jeremiah’s prophecies and realizes that the time of captivity is almost over.  What does Daniel do?  He goes on to confess to God the sins of the nation.  He knows that according to Solomon’s prayer, confession would be needed if the people were to ever be returned to the land of Israel.

:54-61 Solomon blesses the people


:56  there hath not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant.

God keeps His promises.

:62-66 Sacrifice and feasting

:63 And Solomon offered a sacrifice of peace offerings…two and twenty thousand oxen, and an hundred and twenty thousand sheep

peace offerings – a huge barbeque.  Huge.  And everyone is invited.  A “peace offering” was a big party where God was the guest of honor.

:64 The same day did the king hallow the middle of the court

Solomon has to make special arrangements to handle all the offerings because the regular altar of burnt offering can’t handle this big of a load.

:66 they blessed the king, and went unto their tents joyful and glad of heart


Worship leads to joy

I know that we need to be careful that we aren’t always looking for an emotional “high” when we come to church.
But there ought to be a sense in which we experience joy by being in God’s presence.  We ought to be “glad” we came to church.