1 Kings 8
27 “But will God really dwell on earth? The heavens, even the highest heaven, cannot contain you. How much less this temple I have built!
1 Kings 9
3 The Lord said to him: “I have heard the prayer and plea you have made before me; I have consecrated this temple, which you have built, by putting my Name there forever. My eyes and my heart will always be there.4 “As for you, if you walk before me faithfully with integrity of heart and uprightness, as David your father did, and do all I command and observe my decrees and laws, 5 I will establish your royal throne over Israel forever, as I promised David your father when I said, ‘You shall never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.’
25 Three times a year Solomon sacrificed burnt offerings and fellowship offerings on the altar he had built for the Lord, burning incense before the Lord along with them, and so fulfilled the temple obligations.
15 When they arrived, they prayed for the new believers there that they might receive the Holy Spirit, 16 because the Holy Spirit had not yet come on any of them; they had simply been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. 17 Then Peter and John placed their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.
Solomon spent thirteen years building a temple for God, now he’s trying to convince the God of the universe to take up residence in a home built by man. Solomon does all of the right things. He pulls the elders of Israel together, they place the ark of the Lord’s covenant in the new temple, offer up praise to the Lord, and perform large numbers of sacrifices. Even with all of this I can’t help but think that Solomon has some major doubts about God taking up residence in the new temple. I’m sure he was relieved when the Lord appeared to him a second time and claims that he will indeed keep His eyes and ears there forever. Maybe twenty percent of God’s message to Solomon was accepting the temple. The other eighty percent was filled with things that Solomon must do and warnings of what would happen if he didn’t. Solomon seems to have only paid attention to the part about the temple. He quickly falls into the trap of only doing what is required to fulfill the “obligations” of his walk with God.
Now move into the time of Acts – new believers in Samaria, needing the presence of God with them. Did they build a temple? They did not. Instead, they asked for help and were sent Peter and John. Peter and John prayed and with the laying on of hand , the new believers received the Holy Spirit. God NOT living with man, but instead God Living in Man! What a concept. God is here with us at all times. We don’t have to go great distances and sacrifice animals or make burnt offerings. It is as simple as looking towards God who Lives in us! We no longer have an excuse to worship other gods or to not obey the commands and decrees that God has given us. We have God in us!
Father, help us to always be aware of your presence in our lives. Help us to always worship you and to become aware of all the false gods that we tend to be deceived by. Pour out your spirit on us so that we may always have you with us. Write your name on our hearts and help us to share the Gospel with others. May all things be as Jesus said they would be, Amen.