January 5, 2020, 1 Kings 8:1-13 – ISSL Reflections

I.

This coming Sunday’s readings begin 4 weeks we will spend in 1 Kings 8 with Solomon.  Solomon has set about to build the Temple that his father, David, was turned aside from building.  In this chapter we find the building of the Temple completed and hear from Solomon.

We will start our journey with Solomon by reading the first 13 verses of the chapter.  As I have encouraged you to do a number of times during our previous weeks together, read over these verses several times, linger with them, and pause over what captures your attention and focus.

II.

1 Kings 8:1-13 (New Revised Standard Version)

Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, the leaders of the ancestral houses of the Israelites, before King Solomon in Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord out of the city of David, which is Zion. All the people of Israel assembled to King Solomon at the festival in the month Ethanim, which is the seventh month.  And all the elders of Israel came, and the priests carried the ark. So they brought up the ark of the Lord, the tent of meeting, and all the holy vessels that were in the tent; the priests and the Levites brought them up. King Solomon and all the congregation of Israel, who had assembled before him, were with him before the ark, sacrificing so many sheep and oxen that they could not be counted or numbered.  Then the priests brought the ark of the covenant of the Lord to its place, in the inner sanctuary of the house, in the most holy place, underneath the wings of the cherubim. For the cherubim spread out their wings over the place of the ark, so that the cherubim made a covering above the ark and its poles. The poles were so long that the ends of the poles were seen from the holy place in front of the inner sanctuary; but they could not be seen from outside; they are there to this day.  There was nothing in the ark except the two tablets of stone that Moses had placed there at Horeb, where the Lord made a covenant with the Israelites, when they came out of the land of Egypt. And when the priests came out of the holy place, a cloud filled the house of the Lord, so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud; for the glory of the Lord filled the house of the Lord.

Then Solomon said,

“The Lord has said that he would dwell in thick darkness.

I have built you an exalted house,

    a place for you to dwell in forever.”

III.

Our reading starts with the Temple having been completed, the people assembled by Solomon to celebrate its completion, the sacrifices associated with its dedication, and the bringing of the Ark into the Temple.

Shall I say that Solomon and the priests went “all out” in the sacrifices offered?  In your mind, how big do you think this was for Solomon and people? How long had they waited for such an event?  How important was it for the Ark to be “at home” in a place created especially for it?

Have you been part of event that seemed to have so much importance for a group of people?

Give that some thought, and we’ll get back together later.

charles

{ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est}


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