Day 144 (May 24): Temple is dedicated with a big celebration, God fills temple with glory, God is pleased with temple, God tells Solomon the fate of his descendants, Hiram disappointed with towns Solomon gave him

Welcome to BibleBum where we are exploring the entire Bible in one year to better learn how to follow God’s instructions and discover the purpose for our lives.  The BibleBum blog uses The One Year Chronological Bible, the New Living Translation version.  At the end of each day’s reading, Rob, a cultural history aficionado and seminary graduate, answers questions from Leigh An, the blogger host, about the daily scripture.  To start from the beginning, click on “Index” and select Day 1.

1 Kings 8:54-66

2 Chronicles 7:1-10

1 Kings 9:1-9

2 Chronicles 7:11-22

1 Kings 9:10-14

Questions & Observations

Q. (1 Kings 8:54-66): I can’t imagine a festival this big or long.  Not to mention the clean-up and exhaustion. It doesn’t tell us how many people attended, but I would imagine it was a bunch.  President Obama’s inaugurations were estimated at 1.8 million for his first term and 1 million for his second.

A. I’m sure the nation’s event planners made a fortune.  No, seriously, there were regular gatherings like this one to Jerusalem (the story tells us that the people would have been coming to the city anyway to celebrate the Festival of Shelters/Tabernacles, described in Leviticus 23).  So this basically was an expanded version of an already existing festival.  Since David had established Jerusalem as his throne, it was very likely that people had been coming to the city in large numbers for many years.  The same will be true in Jesus’ day: one of the things that historians tell us about the Passover that was being celebrated during Jesus’ last week was that there were probably close to a million pilgrims in and around the city for the festival.  There is no reason to assume it didn’t also happen in a more ancient time.

Q. (1 Kings 9:1-9): So we find out that God is very pleased with the Lord’s temple that Solomon built.  God follows this praise with a challenging charge.  Solomon has a pretty tall order:  If he obeys God and keeps His commands, a descendant of David will always be on the throne.  That is a lot of weight for one man to carry.  Solomon has a good start.

A. Yes he does.  (Not going to tell you here).

Q. (1 Kings 9:10-14): This seems to be another foreshadowing of consequences Solomon will face from not giving his best or better to Hiram who had given so much of himself to build the temple.

A. That does seem to be a pretty nasty move, doesn’t it?  Not a good sign.

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