The Dedication of the Temple

Scripture Passage: 
1 Kings 8:1-66

INTRODUCTION: The work is finished, but Solomon realizes that all is vain unless the Lord blesses the work. Solomon pleads with the Lord that the temple would be a place of prayer and that all prayers directed toward it would be heard of the Lord and answered.

  1. THE ARK BROUGHT TO THE TEMPLE (1 Kings 8:1-11)
    1. The Assembling of the Men of Israel (1 Kings 8:1-2)
      1. Those assembled by Solomon (1 Kings 8:1)
        1. The elders of Israel, heads of the tribes, and chief of the fathers
        2. Assembled to King Solomon in Jerusalem
        3. Assembled for the bringing up of the ark of the covenant
          1. Out of the city of David – this name was given to the southern portion of the eastern ridge of Jerusalem; it was the portion originally taken by David (2 Samuel 5:6-9). Solomon’s temple was on Mount Moriah (2 Chronicles 3:1) and was located to the north of the city of David.
          2. Which is Zion – Zion was later used to refer to the entire city of Jerusalem and also to the heavenly abode of God.
      2. Those who assembled themselves (1 Kings 8:2)
        1. All the men of Israel
        2. At the feast of the seventh month of Ethanim – probably refers to the Feast of Tabernacles, the seventh of the seven major annual feasts (Leviticus 23) and the feast that pictured the final rest of Israel and God dwelling with them; a most appropriate time
    2. The Ark Brought Up from the Tabernacle (1 Kings 8:3-5)
      1. The priests brought up (1 Kings 8:3-4):
        1. The ark of the Lord
        2. The tabernacle of the congregation
          1. At this time, the tabernacle made by Moses was in Gibeon (1 Chronicles 16:39; 2 Chronicles 1:3).
          2. The ark was in a tabernacle that David had specifically pitched for it (2 Samuel 6:17).
          3. According to this verse, the tabernacle of the congregation was brought to the temple. The tabernacle David pitched was never called the tabernacle of the congregation. That was the name for the tabernacle made by Moses. Evidently, the tabernacle of Moses was brought to the temple and perhaps stored there in recognition of the continuation of the tabernacle/temple service.
        3. All the holy vessels of the tabernacle
      2. The sacrifices that were made (1 Kings 8:5)
        1. By Solomon and the congregation
        2. More than could be told or numbered
    3. The Ark Brought into the Most Holy Place (1 Kings 8:6-9)
      1. The ark of the covenant brought in (1 Kings 8:6-7)
        1. Unto his place (1 Kings 8:6)
        2. Into the oracle of the house (1 Kings 8:6)
        3. To the most holy place (1 Kings 8:6)
        4. Under the wings of the cherubims (1 Kings 8:7; see 2 Kings 19:15)
      2. The staves of the ark drawn out (1 Kings 8:8-9)
        1. These were the poles that were placed in the rings at the four corners of the ark in order to carry it (Exodus 25:14).
        2. In Moses’ time, the staves were not to be removed from the rings of the ark (Exodus 25:15).
        3. The staves in Solomon’s temple were still under the wings of the cherubims (1 Kings 8:7), but they were drawn out so that the ends of the staves could be seen in the holy place before the most holy place (1 Kings 8:8). This would be possible if the staves were fairly long (about 15 cubits). Seeing the ends of the staves protruding through the veil would have been comforting to the priests as they fulfilled their daily tasks assuring them that the ark was still there.
          1. This pictures those things we have been given to assure us that the rest will come. Primary among these gifts is the earnest of the Spirit (2 Corinthians 1:22; 2 Corinthians 5:5).
          2. The ends of these staves could not be seen by those on the outside of the temple – “without” (1 Kings 8:8). In the New Testament, those who are without are the lost. They cannot see or understand the foretastes we have of glory.
          3. At the time of the writing of 1 Kings, the staves were said to be there “unto this day” (1 Kings 8:8). We can say the same about the glimpses of eternity for the saint. They are not just for our forefathers. They are still there for us today.
      3. The tables of stone in the ark (1 Kings 8:9)
        1. The tables with the Ten Commandments were placed in the ark as a testimony (Exodus 25:21; Deuteronomy 10:5).
        2. At one point, there were three items in the ark (Hebrews 9:4):
          1. The Ten Commandments
          2. The golden pot of manna (Exodus 16:33-34)
          3. Aaron’s rod that budded (Numbers 17:10)
    4. The Glory of the Lord Filled the Temple (1 Kings 8:10-11).
      1. The cloud filled the house of the Lord (1 Kings 8:10).
      2. The priests could not stand to minister in the cloud (1 Kings 8:11).
      3. The glory of the Lord filled the house of the Lord (1 Kings 8:11), as it did at the dedication of the tabernacle (Exodus 40:34-35).
  2. THE BLESSING OF THE LORD (1 Kings 8:12-21)
    1. The Dwelling Place of the Lord (1 Kings 8:12-13)
      1. The Lord to dwell in thick darkness (1 Kings 8:12)
        1. When He came down to Mount Sinai (Exodus 20:21)
        2. Making darkness His secret place (Psalm 18:11; Psalm 97:2)
        3. Required to minimize the effects of His glory (Exodus 33:20; 1 Timothy 6:16)
      2. Solomon built a house for the Lord to dwell in (1 Kings 8:13).
        1. A settled place; as opposed to the wandering tabernacle
        2. A place to abide forever
    2. The Blessings of King Solomon (1 Kings 8:14-15)
      1. He turned to face the congregation and the people stood (1 Kings 8:14).
      2. He praised the Lord for His words (1 Kings 8:15).
    3. The Promise to David of the Temple (1 Kings 8:16-19)
      1. The Lord chose David to be king (1 Kings 8:16).
      2. It was in the heart of David to build a house for the Lord (1 Kings 8:17).
      3. The Lord was pleased that David desired to build Him the house (1 Kings 8:18).
      4. David could not build the house, but Solomon would (1 Kings 8:19).
    4. The Fulfillment through Solomon of the Promise (1 Kings 8:20-21)
      1. The Lord has allowed Solomon to build the house (1 Kings 8:20).
      2. A place has been given for the ark of the Lord (1 Kings 8:21).
  3. THE PRAYER OF THE DEDICATION (1 Kings 8:22-30)
    1. Solomon Approached the Altar to Pray (1 Kings 8:22).
      1. He stood before the altar in the presence of the congregation.
      2. He spread his hands to pray (Exodus 9:29, 33; Isaiah 1:15; 1 Timothy 2:8).
    2. Solomon Spoke to the Lord (1 Kings 8:23-30).
      1. He praised the Lord God of Israel (1 Kings 8:23-24).
      2. He reminded the Lord of His promises (1 Kings 8:25-26).
      3. He spoke of the inadequacy of the temple (1 Kings 8:27).
      4. He sought God’s ear for the prayers of the temple (1 Kings 8:28-30).
  4. THE PLEA GIVEN AT THE DEDICATION (1 Kings 8:31-53)
    1. When a Man Trespasses against His Neighbor (1 Kings 8:31-32)
    2. When Israel is Smitten before Her Enemies (1 Kings 8:33-34)
    3. When Rain is Held Back from the Land (1 Kings 8:35-36)
    4. When Famine and Pestilence Come to the Land (1 Kings 8:37-40)
    5. When a Stranger Calls on the Name of the Lord (1 Kings 8:41-43)
    6. When Israel Seeks Help before Going to Battle (1 Kings 8:44-45)
    7. When Israel is Taken Captive because of Sin (1 Kings 8:46-53)
  5. THE BLESSING OF THE CONGREGATION (1 Kings 8:54-61)
    1. Solomon Rose from His Prayer (1 Kings 8:54-55).
    2. Solomon Blessed the Congregation (1 Kings 8:56-61).
      1. He spoke of God’s faithfulness (1 Kings 8:56-57, 59-60).
      2. He spoke of the need for their faithfulness (1 Kings 8:58, 61).
  6. THE SACRIFICES OF THE DEDICATION (1 Kings 8:62-64)
    1. The Peace Offerings Dedicating the House of the Lord (1 Kings 8:62-63)
      1. The king and all Israel offered (1 Kings 8:62).
      2. The offering included (1 Kings 8:63):
        1. 22,000 oxen
        2. 120,000 sheep
    2. The Hallowed Middle Court for the Abundance of Offerings (1 Kings 8:64)
      1. With burnt offerings, meat offerings, and the fat of the peace offerings
      2. The brazen altar was too little to receive the offerings.
  7. THE FEAST OF THE DEDICATION (1 Kings 8:65-66)
    1. Held for Two Periods of Seven Days (1 Kings 8:65)
    2. The People Sent Home on the Eighth Day (1 Kings 8:66)

CONCLUSION: The house of the Lord is finished and has been dedicated by prayer and sacrifice. The people return to their tents joyful and glad of heart for all the goodness that the Lord has done for David his servant and for Israel his people.

David Reagan and Andrew Ray

Daily Proverb

Proverbs 30:14

There is a generation, whose teeth are as swords, and their jaw teeth as knives, to devour the poor from off the earth, and the needy from among men.