Summary: The building of the Temple was a high water mark in the spiritual development of God’s people.
BUILDING PONDEROSA – 1 Kings 6:11
“Then the word of the Lord came to Solomon, saying: Concerning this temple which you are building, if you walk in My statutes, execute My judgements, keep all my commandments and walk in them, then I will perform My word with you which I spoke to your father David and I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will not forsake my people Israel.”
This is a message for Solomon - the leader of the people Israel as well as for us in our modern day – 3000 years later. They were beginning the monumental project of building the temple. And God spoke to Solomon and gave him some good advice. The presence of God would be important in the temple, the presence of God is important here. That’s what worship is all about! So long as we are aware of the presence of holiness - the presence of God’s majesty, his power - his glory – we’re OK. That’s why we come here.
The message is to Solomon – the leader – this message is to our next preacher – the leader of the flock Ponderosa Baptist Church. He’s not here of course – but this is a sermon for him. He’ll be the one who leads us in the next stage of our building program. He’ll be the one God will speak to. God is saying to Solomon - "My presence in this house you are going to build - will depend on the kind of person you are." if you walk in My statutes, execute My judgements, keep all my commandments and walk in them, then I will perform My word with you which I spoke to your father David and I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will not forsake my people Israel.
Who the pastor is and what he is - is important to spiritual health of any church. Let’s preach this sermon to the next pastor of Ponderosa.
The building of the temple – 950 years before the birth of Jesus is a high water mark in the history of God’s people.
There was a place for the people to worship during their whole history – beginning with the time they escaped from Egypt – went to Sinai – and God gave them instructions for a tent – a moveable temple – one they could take with them during the 40 years in the wilderness.
But that was all over - the wilderness wandering was over many years ago – and the tabernacle was still the central place for Israel’s worship.
In the words of David, “I dwell in a house of Cedar and my God lives in a tent.” It wasn’t right in his mind – he wanted to build the temple – but because he had been a man of war –and killing – God prevented him from doing that – and it fell Solomon’s lot – to do that job. The temple would be the center of the community - the place where the people came regularly to meet God. Solomon must have been concerned about this and sometime in the process of building – the word of the Lord came to him with this good advice. Let’s look at what He said and remember, he is saying it to the leader of the nation.
I. THE WORD OF THE LORD CAME TO SOLOMON.
A. The word of the Lord comes to people who are listening. Solomon for all his faults was God’s man – with all his faults he knew how to listen to the voice of God speaking to him. The word of the Lord came to Solomon. Remember now, this is a sermon for the preacher, the one who wrote the book of Proverbs – Eccliastes – Song of Solomon.
B. The word of the Lord comes to us – preachers and all Christians, when we know how that:
1. Prayer is a two sided conversation.
a. We can tell God all about our lives – our building – our church – our family – and about our personal wants and needs.
b. Do that – God is listening – the line is open – talk to him – he will always hear you. He wants me to do that - he wants you to do it too.
2. But let’s know this – when we pray – We are talking to God – and He is talking to us. Our prayer is not a one way conversation to somebody who cannot speak back. God is as able to communicate as I am and as you are. The word of the Lord came to Solomon – and the word of the Lord comes to me and to you – WHEN WE LISTEN. ARE WE LISTENING?