Summary: Learn from Solomon. We give God our best and we follow His design.
We have come to the actual building of the Temple of God in 1 Kings 6.
• This is a short write up of the building; we have greater details in the books of Chronicles. Let’s read a portion – 1 Kings 6:19-37.
TWO THINGS stand out in the building of the Temple – they dedicated the best to the building – the best logs, the best men, the best materials.
• And the SECOND thing that stands out is the strict adherence to certain dimensions and how the different parts of the Temple is to be built.
GIVING GOD THE VERY BEST
• We see that extensive efforts were put in to make sure that the Temple of God is magnificent and made according to God’s design.
• Even for the stones that were needed, they were not prepared on site, with all the noise and dust within the Temple site.
• 6:7 “In building the temple, only blocks dressed at the quarry were used, and no hammer, chisel or any other iron tool was heard at the temple site while it was being built.”
And the preparations did not start with Solomon, it started with King David.
• 1 Chron 22 records David’s preparations for the Temple. Let’s look at 1 Chron 22.
• 22:1-5 “1Then David said, "The house of the LORD God is to be here, and also the altar of burnt offering for Israel." 2So David gave orders to assemble the aliens living in Israel, and from among them he appointed stonecutters to prepare dressed stone for building the house of God. 3He provided a large amount of iron to make nails for the doors of the gateways and for the fittings, and more bronze than could be weighed. 4He also provided more cedar logs than could be counted, for the Sidonians and Tyrians had brought large numbers of them to David.
5David said, "My son Solomon is young and inexperienced, and the house to be built for the LORD should be of great magnificence and fame and splendour in the sight of all the nations. Therefore I will make preparations for it." So David made extensive preparations before his death.
• 22:14-16 14"I have taken great pains to provide for the temple of the LORD a hundred thousand talents of gold, a million talents of silver, quantities of bronze and iron too great to be weighed, and wood and stone. And you may add to them. 15You have many workmen: stonecutters, masons and carpenters, as well as men skilled in every kind of work 16in gold and silver, bronze and iron-craftsmen beyond number. Now begin the work, and the LORD be with you."
Solomon continued where his father left off – putting in his best for the work.
• Some used this as an excuse to splurge on church buildings. We should not use excessive amount of money to build buildings; it can be put to better use.
• Solomon’s Temple is different. It is not an apple and apple comparison.
• The context is entirely unique. This is ONE Temple of God for the nation of Israel. It is the ONE and ONLY representation of God’s presence with Israel.
• David says, it should be of “great magnificence and fame and splendour in the sight of all the nations.” (1 Chron 22:5) It’s their ONLY testimony.
Look at the woman who came to Jesus and offered her most expensive jar of perfume (Matt 26:6-13). She broke it and poured it over Jesus.
• All those present were angry and said, “Why this waste?” (6:8)
• Jesus says, “10She has done a beautiful thing to me. 11The poor you will always have with you, but you will not always have me. 12When she poured this perfume on my body, she did it to prepare me for burial.”
• It has to do with the significance of the act in that particular moment. It is about PRIORITY and PURPOSE.
All the leaders of Israel played a part in providing the resources too. King David challenged them to do so in 1 Chron 29.
• 1 Chron 29:1-9 “1Then King David said to the whole assembly: "My son Solomon, the one whom God has chosen, is young and inexperienced. The task is great, because this palatial structure is not for man but for the LORD God. 2With all my resources I have provided for the temple of my God-gold for the gold work, silver for the silver, bronze for the bronze, iron for the iron and wood for the wood, as well as onyx for the settings, turquoise, stones of various colors, and all kinds of fine stone and marble-all of these in large quantities.
3 Besides, in my devotion to the temple of my God I now give my personal treasures of gold and silver for the temple of my God, over and above everything I have provided for this holy temple…