Join us as Senior Pastor Chris Johnson, Associate Pastor Aaron Hufty and Associate Pastor Bryan Richardson walk us through 2 Chronicles 3:1-17 in our Spring Sermon Series: “SOLOMON – Building A Place of Worship.”
“Because the Lord loves His people, He has made you king over them.” vs 11
The Lord loves His people and He gave them a king that would rule with wisdom. He gave them a king that would bring glory to Himself.
“But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us,even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—” Ephesians 2:4-5
The Lord loves His people. He loves them so much He gave them a King that would conquer the enemy for good. He gave them a King that would rule with wisdom from above. He gave them a King that would sit eternally on the Throne. He gave them Himself!
It will be a place set apart to burn fragrant incense before him, to display the special sacrificial bread, and to sacrifice burnt offerings each morning and evening, on the Sabbaths, at new moon celebrations, and at the other appointed festivals of the Lord our God. He has commanded Israel to do these things forever. 2 Chronicles 2:4
With his own blood—not the blood of goats and calves—he entered the Most Holy Place once for all time and secured our redemption forever. Hebrew 9:12
Forever. From the beginning God never intended for Temple sacrifices to fulfill what was required to atone for our sin forever. But they did point to the greater sacrifice (and high priest). Jesus died once for all, and rising from the grave, sat down at the right hand of the Father forever.
“Behold, I am about to build a house for the name of the LORD my God, The house which I am about to build will be great, for greater is our God than all the gods.”
In Solomon’s mind the temple would reflect and remind the Israelites of the character and nature of God. Not a small task at all. I wonder if Solomon wanted them to look up or be awestruck when they entered or even just passed by the temple.
I think we often overlook opportunities to reflect God’s character and nature as “living temples”. 1 Corinthians 3:16-Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?
The way we love, serve, forgive, and even work can point and remind others of the greatness and glory of the Living God.
We see in Chronicles the preparation and planning required for so a great a task. We should also plan and prepare daily (scripture, prayer, repentance) for others to encounter God’s presence in us and through us. May we reflect an accurate picture and expression of God’s glory each and every day.
David had put aside vast amounts of supplies to build the Temple with…gold, silver, bronze, precious stone, iron, fabrics…but Solomon needed more. Evidently, Solomon had enlarged the plans for the Temple and required more supplies. As grand as the plans were for the Temple, Solomon recognized that God could not be contained within this house. Even the heavens and the highest heavens were not large enough to hold God. God was greater than time or space.
When we stop and contemplate on the greatness of God, it is truly beyond our comprehension. God reminded Job of His greatness in Job 38-41. God has performed tasks and created perfection in ways we don’t even know to ask about. In our finite thinking, we cannot fathom the majesty and glory of God.
So can a God this big manage the petty needs in our lives? They don’t seem petty to us maybe, but in the grand scheme of things they hardly register on the scale of importance and complexity. Why does it seem to be so hard to trust God? He has promised to guide us…to provide for us…to meet our every need, yet we struggle to trust Him. Ask God for the faith to trust Him!
How does God view the laborers who had no say in the decision to use their bodies for the building of the temple? Are they peripheral? Are there any peripheral people in God’s eyes? There are in ours. We’ll never know their names. Their lives of forced servitude, harsh conditions, and static social position are foreign to those who have never been brushed aside in society. That was long ago and far away, but not to God. Wherever people’s decisions are made for them, wherever grand plans depend on the bodies and skills of those who have little say in the world, we do it again. We will cease such practices when we heed the words of Jesus regarding the temple: “My house shall be called a house of prayer for all nations.”
Re:Verse passage – 2 Chronicles 2:1-12 (day two) But who is able to build a house for Him, for the heavens and the highest heavens cannot contain Him? So who am I, that I should build a house for Him, except to burn incense before Him? vs. 6
Have you ever been completely overwhelmed by a task that you are certain that you were given to do? As you think about that moment perhaps you looked at the totality of the project and you had no idea where to begin: scope of the project, resources both financial and human, time frame, etc. These can be daunting factors, and Solomon could have certainly felt similar, but he knew this task was for him, just not for him alone. The wisdom required to outsource can be God sent. Friend, you may know you have a job to do, but that doesn’t mean it is up to you alone. Take stock of the resources God has placed before you. That is stewardship, that is wisdom.
“And I will give you riches and wealth and honor.” vs 12b
The temptation of this passage is to make a direct correlation of wisdom and prosperity. We subtly believe that by honoring God and asking for His wisdom that we will be blessed by Him as Solomon was. That was not the point of what God was trying to teach Solomon. The point comes directly before that:
“that you may rule My people over whom I have made you king” vs 11b
Receiving wisdom from God does not mean we will have a prosperous or perfect life (we will learn about that in the weeks ahead), but when we seek God’s wisdom, we will better lead those whom God has entrusted into our hands. Seeking wisdom from Above in our decisions will sometimes result in earthly success but will always result in spiritual fulfillment and trustworthy leadership.
Who are the people in your life that God has entrusted you to lead?
How will they benefit from you seeking wisdom from Above?
There in front of the Tabernacle, Solomon went up to the bronze altar in the Lord’s presence and sacrificed 1,000 burnt offerings on it.
7 That night God appeared to Solomon and said, “What do you want? Ask, and I will give it to you!” 2 Chronicles 1:6-7
The progression is clear, from 1000’s of sacrifices at the altar to receiving word from God. Worship at the tabernacle in Gibeon illustrates that kind of beautiful movement towards God; we can only move towards him through repentance and atonement.
This highlights something else for us. The forgiveness we receive through Jesus, our once for all sacrifice, restores our relationship with God. The kind of relationship where God speaks to us, and we speak with him.
Repentance and atonement is never the end goal, restoration to our Father in heaven is; knowing the one true God and the one who he sent, Jesus. (John 17:3)