Day 3

Building the Temple

from the 1 & 2 Kings reading plan

1 Kings 5:13-18, 1 Kings 6:1-38, 1 Kings 7:1-51, Leviticus 26:11-13, Ephesians 2:19-22

BY Melanie Rainer

I love looking at real estate online. I love flipping open an app and scanning houses both nearby and far away, homes that I might one day be able to afford (probably not), and dream about the parties I could host, the backyard adventures my kids could have, and the ideal life one of these houses would surely provide me.

Currently, I live in a very nice house that we built a few years ago. We chose the finishes and the floors, everything down to the grout. I love every room, and it is more than I ever could have imagined owning. And yet, I spend a lot of time window shopping for a new house. My heart beats to the rhythm of what’s next, what’s better, what would make my life more. More what? I don’t always know. But I am always chasing it.

Solomon built an extravagant temple for the Lord. Every detail mattered, the length of the doorways and the beveled frames for each window. It mattered where the stones were finished (at the quarry) and how gold was overlaid on the interior walls. We know the details mattered because they are written in Scripture, in God’s revelation to His people. The temple was a stunning architectural achievement, built with detail for the holy God of Israel.

And yet, Solomon kept building. This time, he built for himself. He was chasing more. It took twenty years to build God’s temple and then Solomon’s palace. Solomon’s story will unfold over the next few chapters of 1 Kings, but we start to see glimpses here of what is to come. Solomon’s itch for more—a bigger palace, more wives, places of worship for other gods—begins to present itself, and it will slowly unravel his kingship.

King Solomon was on top of his world. He was the most famous, wealthiest, wisest king in all the earth. But his need for more would eventually be his undoing. In 1 Kings 6:13, God made this promise to Solomon: “If you walk in my statutes, observe my ordinances, and keep all my commands by walking in them, I will fulfill my promise to you, which I made to your father David. I will dwell among the Israelites and not abandon my people Israel.”

Solomon didn’t keep God’s commands, but the Lord did keep His promise. I think we will always itch for more until the fulfillment of God’s kingdom, when all tears will dry and we will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. That is the house I should crave, not this world’s version of a perfect home or false security. I want to crave the perfect peace, righteousness, and future that God promises me through Jesus. One day in His presence is better than a thousand elsewhere (Psalm 84:10). May God continue to make over my heart with a longing for Him and His house alone.

Post Comments (42)

42 thoughts on "Building the Temple"

  1. Karen says:

    Thank you Sarah for that wonderful visual and explanations in the video you shared! Every time I have read the story of the temple I try to picture it in my mind but this makes it so much easier to visualize!
    Also, I couldn’t help but notice a few underlying threads of disobedience in Solomon’s behavior through yesterday’s and today’s Bible reading. Both stated verses that reminded us Solomon married Pharoah’s daughter, an Egyptian, which would have been against God’s law. The second was the yearning for more and for himself as Melanie explained. I also love the associations between the old testament stories and the new-it pulls everything together in the Bible and makes the Old Testament seem so relevant to today’s world!

    1. Jennifer Anapol says:

      Thank you for sharing your insights Karen. It doesn’t matter how closely we are following the Lord, the enemy can still creep in and cause us to slowly turn away from God.

  2. Camille English Davis says:

    I too am a lover of real estate. I find myself one minute dreaming of living on a farm with a large vegetable garden and fruiting plants. Minutes later I’m living in a city townhouse over looking a great river. This lesson is such a good reminder to be content with the Lord’s many blessings.

  3. Melissa Graves says:

    I have found that as I get older and draw closer to the Lord, things hold far less allure than they once did. Delighting in Him is far superior to anything the world has to offer. I’ve always known that intellectually but it has truly become my experience over time, by His grace. It’s really all about Him ❤️

  4. Alexis says:

    Hi Cassie,

    I am so sorry that you’re dealing with this. I’ve struggled with anxiety too and know how debilitating it can be. Know that I am lifting you in prayer- to be healed of your anxiety and to receive the peace of God. This verse keeps coming to my mind for you: “casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.”
    1 Peter 5:7 ESV
    Tell God everything. Let him carry you through. He loves you so much.<3

  5. DebRN says:

    Cassie, Thank you for sharing your need. I join the others in lifting you up to Jesus. Our summer has been: cancer, cancer, death and a wedding. I just asked that He would be with me in every moment. The events will unfold. And He is Faithful. When I needed to be courageous and calm, I was. I asked trusted friends to pray for me. I find it so helpful to write in a gratitude journal everyday. It contains my thanks and prayers, sorrows and joys. Keep reading and let us know how you are. Anxiety is common to man. It is not just you. I regard it in the verse that says sin is crouching at the door and you must master it. You are enough, dear Cassie, and God will provide your need.

  6. Sarah says:

    I’ve read these passages about the temple a dozen times or more but never really had a clear picture in my mind. Here’s a terrific short video explaining the significance of various elements and what the temple would have looked like.

  7. Brandy says:

    Praying for you Cassie. God is amazing. He does not require you to be strong enough to overcome this, He only asks for you to be still and to trust Him. Your faithfulness and your obedience to Him will get you through this. I pray that He calms your heart and you can find peace in times of stress and in new social situations!
    Have a blessed day.

  8. Cassie says:

    Just wanted to ask for a prayer since I know you lovely ladies are so good to lift each other’s needs up! I’ve been struggling a lot with anxiety lately. As a young working mom, I think I’ve been putting a lot of stress on myself lately and I just feel like I’ve cracked. My stomach is a mess often, and I just feel like my brain is overloaded. I’ve had some social anxiety for a long time. But lately it’s gotten worse. I think the stress is making it worse. My mom invited me out for lunch and a quick shopping trip yesterday. I went, but by the time I was done I felt completely exhausted and my stomach was a mess the rest of the day. I don’t want to be controlled by stress and anxiety. Please pray that I can find better ways to manage my stress and to not allow fear to stop me from social situations. I know this can get better, I know God can heal me, but even if it lasts for awhile, I want to find the purpose of this and serve Him through it. Thank you so much ladies, I am praying for all of you today. You are a blessing!

    1. Melissa Graves says:

      I’m praying for you, sweet Cassie, that you will find rest and peace in Him and that He will show you how to effectively deal with the causes of your stress. ❤️

    2. Courtney Moore says:

      Cassie I definitely dealt with this as a first time working mom. It is tough! I tried to make sure that I rose before my baby … even just a few minutes to pray and meditate in order to calm my nerves and my soul. I drank less coffee,( but still some of course), walked during my lunch break… even if was five minutes… then went to my doctor who prescribed me anti anxiety medication. I am sorry that I waited so long for this final step… but a little medication with all of the above made a world of difference.
      Praying for you and standing in solidarity ❤️

    3. Annette Kendall says:

      Cassie- I am praying for you and have struggled very similarly myself as a working mom with two littles. You are not alone and we have a gracious and loving father God who is so much bigger than the trials that we face, and loves us so much to carry our burdens. May you get a new vision of how great God is and may the Holy Spirit work in a new way to breathe life and hope into every cell of our bodies and calm our hearts and minds.

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