Summary: I take a look at the gifts that were given to construct the temple.
There was a sense of excitement in the air. For hundreds of years the people of Israel had worshipped their God in a tent. But that was going to change, they were at the beginning of a process that would culminate in a house of worship that would be known throughout the world and throughout history as the “Temple of Solomon.” But, that was the end and this was the beginning. This was where the temple started, where it all began. Without this chapter in the book of Chronicles there would never have been a temple of Solomon, without these 20 verses, the people of Israel would have continued to worship God in the Tabernacle, they would never have had the opportunity to have been blessed or to have blessed others. Jews from around the world would make the pilgrimage to Jerusalem to worship in the temple and this was the beginning.
The story is told in the book of 1 Chronicles which is the 13th book of the bible. Jewish tradition holds that the book was written by the Prophet Ezra and although there is no evidence to prove this there is no evidence to disprove it either. The book was written around 450 BC and the two books of 1 & 2 Chronicles were originally one book, the book of Chronicles. And although much of the information in these books was already provided in 2 Samuel and 2 Kings it is here for a different purpose. Chronicles was written after the Kingdom had been torn apart and the Jews were living in captivity and so the Author was assuring them that God was still in control and still had a plan for the people of Israel. If you’ve read the book of 1 Chronicles you know it starts with the intensity of a phone book. For nine chapters it list name after name. Names of fathers, names of sons and names of families. Most without comment. Later in the book we read lists of the Levites, who were the priests, lists of those who sang in the tabernacle, that would be there worship team. Then the author goes on to list the gatekeepers of the city, the officers of the Army and the King’s closest advisors.
It was in this book that we read the prayer of Jabez and discover how David brought the Ark of the covenant to Jerusalem. And in the last two chapter we discover David’s plan and passion for a temple to worship God in.
Why was the book written? Apparently to help the Israelites recognize their Godly background and to rediscover their roots.
And so we are going to skip through phone book section of the book and leap to the end, to chapter 29 where Karen read earlier and we are going to take a look at the beginning of the temple and how it happened. God didn’t just zap the temple into being, it happened because people wanted it to happen. And they were committed to seeing it happen. And yes they gave to make the dream a reality. This morning we are looking at the Givers and their Gifts.
1) David’s Gift David has come to the end of his reign and is about to appoint his son Solomon to serve as King. But there is one thing that David has not been able to accomplish as King and that was to build the temple. And it wasn’t for lack of trying. Way back in chapter 22 David confined in his son and told him 1 Chronicles 22:7 “I wanted to build a Temple to honour the name of the Lord my God,” But listen to the rest of the story, 1 Chronicles 22:8 “But the Lord said to me, ‘You have killed many men in the great battles you have fought. And since you have shed so much blood before me, 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 was just following God’s commands. But I’m not David and I’m not God. And the issue here wasn’t whether David was obedient or disobedient it was a matter of God’s timing. Instead, God told David that Solomon would be able to do what David wasn’t able to do. And that was to build the temple. And even though it wasn’t going to be David who would ultimately build the temple it didn’t keep David from doing his very best to see that the temple got built.
Now I don’t know if people got tired of hearing David talk about the temple that was going to be built and how nice it was going to be not to have to set up and tear down the tabernacle all the time, and how great it was to have a place to call their own. But this time it was different, because this time David starts by telling people how committed he is to the entire project.