The priests then brought the ark of the Lord ’s covenant to its place in the inner sanctuary of the temple, the Most Holy Place, and put it beneath the wings of the cherubim. The cherubim spread their wings over the place of the ark and overshadowed the ark and its carrying poles. These poles were so long that their ends could be seen from the Holy Place in front of the inner sanctuary, but not from outside the Holy Place; and they are still there today. There was nothing in the ark except the two stone tablets that Moses had placed in it at Horeb, where the Lord made a covenant with the Israelites after they came out of Egypt. When the priests withdrew from the Holy Place, the cloud filled the temple of the Lord . And the priests could not perform their service because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled his temple. Then Solomon said, “The Lord has said that he would dwell in a dark cloud; I have indeed built a magnificent temple for you, a place for you to dwell forever.” While the whole assembly of Israel was standing there, the king turned around and blessed them. Then he said: “Praise be to the Lord , the God of Israel, who with his own hand has fulfilled what he promised with his own mouth to my father David. For he said, ‘Since the day I brought my people Israel out of Egypt, I have not chosen a city in any tribe of Israel to have a temple built so that my Name might be there, but I have chosen David to rule my people Israel.’ – 1 Kings 8:6-16
This is an interesting passage. Solomon has just finished completing a very ornate and decorated temple for God….and God has shown up. God shows up as a Godly condensate…an elemental God rather than one adorned like the temple.
This is the first earthly place God chose to “inhabit”. Up to this point God has appeared to the Israelites as a Consuming fire or permeating cloud. God dwelling in the temple built by Solomon fulfilled God’s promise to David, although David did not get to build the temple or welcome God into it. David had to “train his replacement” when he gave the leadership and covenant over to Solomon knowing that he would not get to build the temple for God.
I find it intriguing that God did not show up until the priests left the temple. Either they were not ready for God or God was not ready for them. It is very awe-inspiring that God now dwells within those who faithfully follow Him. We do not need to “leave the temple”, God actually enters the temple of our bodies with us still in it! How amazing is that!
I return from Haiti tomorrow and will be able to focus more “bandwidth” on my walk with water. I have had many interesting adventures here in Haiti and I remain convinced that water is life, especially for Haiti.
Prayer: It is amazing that You have chosen to dwell within us as believers in Christ. Thank you that we no longer need to “leave the temple”.