Summary: Building Salomon's Temple was a BHAG we look at what type of giving was required.
The Big things
Last week I spoke about the little things, the minutia, the details. In that case it was the details that would have been involved in supporting Jesus and his disciples. And I looked at Luke 8:1-3. In particular the verse that said Luke 8:2-3 Among them were Mary Magdalene, from whom he had cast out seven demons; Joanna, the wife of Chuza, Herod’s business manager; Susanna; and many others who were contributing their own resources to support Jesus and his disciples.
Do you remember why they contributed their own resources to support Jesus and his disciples? That’s right because they loved Jesus and believed in the mission. But that was last week when I spoke about the little things, the minutia, and the details.
And this is this week and I am going to be speaking about a big thing, as a matter of fact you might even say it was a BHAG or Big Hairy Audacious Goal. I don’t know if you are familiar with the term but it comes from Jim Collins, the author of “From Good to Great” who is one of the speakers at next month’s Leadercast that we are hosting at Cornerstone. Here is how Collins’ defines it: “A true BHAG is clear and compelling, serves as unifying focal point of effort, and acts as a clear catalyst for team spirit. It has a clear finish line, so the organization can know when it has achieved the goal; people like to shoot for finish lines.”
And this was in the truest sense a BHAG. We first read about it in a discussion that King David had with his son Solomon in 1 Chronicles 22:7 “My son, I wanted to build a Temple to honour the name of the Lord my God,” David told him. For four hundred years the people of Israel had been worshipping God in a temporary facility, the tabernacle which God himself had provided inspiration for to Moses. But the time had come as a nation that King David felt there needed to be a permanent spiritual home for the people of God. Sounds like a good idea, I’ve known other leaders who have cast the vision for a permanent place of worship. But listen to the rest of the story that David told his son, 1 Chronicles 22:8 “But the Lord said to me, ‘You have killed many men in the battles you have fought. And since you have shed so much blood in my sight, you will not be the one to build a Temple to honour my name.
Now personally if I was David I would be a little confused, after all he might have shed blood but it he was just following God’s commands and for the most part he was defending Israel against the Philistine and Amalekites and everyone else who thought they should have a piece of Israel, some things never change.
But I’m not David and I’m not God. And the issue here wasn’t an issue of whether David was obedient or disobedient instead it was a matter of God’s timing and apparently God’s temple was to be built during a time of peace and not one of conflict because God told David that Solomon would be able to do what David could only dream of doing. And that was to build the temple.
I think it says a lot about David that even though he knew he wouldn’t get to build the temple he did his very best to see that the temple got built, the temple didn’t just magically appear, it happened because people gave to make it happen and that takes us to the scripture that was read earlier. 1 Chronicles 29:3 “And now, because of my devotion to the Temple of my God, I am giving all of my own private treasures of gold and silver to help in the construction. This is in addition to the building materials I have already collected for his holy Temple.”
So the first thing is that It was Sacrificial Giving Not only did David tell the people that he was going to give in front of God and everyone he tells them exactly how much he is giving. 1 Chronicles 29:4 I am donating more than 112 tons of gold from Ophir and 262 tons of refined silver to be used for overlaying the walls of the buildings Now David could have simply said “I’m really, really, really committed to this and so I’m going to give a bunch of gold and silver.” But he didn’t, he said I’m giving 224,000 lbs of gold, 464,000 lbs of silver. Now we don’t know what that was worth in their economy. There was no currency as we know it in Israel at that time, but in today’s dollars that much Gold would be worth close to 10 billion dollars Canadian. And to quote Senator Everett Dirksen “A billion here, a billion there, and pretty soon you’re talking real money”.