🎯TOPIC: SOLOMON’S PRAYER DURING THE DEDICATION OF THE TEMPLE
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✝️ TEXT: 1 Kings 8: 22-53(NKJV)
8:22. Then Solomon stood before the altar of the LORD in the presence of all the assembly of Israel, and spread out his hands toward heaven;
8:23. and he said: “LORD God of Israel, [there is] no God in heaven above or on earth below like You, who keep [Your] covenant and mercy with Your servants who walk before You with all their hearts.
8:24. “You have kept what You promised Your servant David my father; You have both spoken with Your mouth and fulfilled [it] with Your hand, as [it is] this day.
8:25. “Therefore, LORD God of Israel, now keep what You promised Your servant David my father, saying, ‘You shall not fail to have a man sit before Me on the throne of Israel, only if your sons take heed to their way, that they walk before Me as you have walked before Me.’
8:26. “And now I pray, O God of Israel, let Your word come true, which You have spoken to Your servant David my father.
8:27. “But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You. How much less this temple which I have built!
8:28. “Yet regard the prayer of Your servant and his supplication, O LORD my God, and listen to the cry and the prayer which Your servant is praying before You today:
8:29. “that Your eyes may be open toward this temple night and day, toward the place of which You said, ‘My name shall be there,’ that You may hear the prayer which Your servant makes toward this place.
8:30. “And may You hear the supplication of Your servant and of Your people Israel, when they pray toward this place. Hear in heaven Your dwelling place; and when You hear, forgive.
8:31. ” When anyone sins against his neighbor, and is forced to take an oath, and comes [and] takes an oath before Your altar in this temple,
8:32. “then hear in heaven, and act, and judge Your servants, condemning the wicked, bringing his way on his head, and justifying the righteous by giving him according to his righteousness.
8:33. ” When Your people Israel are defeated before an enemy because they have sinned against You, and when they turn back to You and confess Your name, and pray and make supplication to You in this temple,
8:34. “then hear in heaven, and forgive the sin of Your people Israel, and bring them back to the land which You gave to their fathers.
8:35. ” When the heavens are shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against You, when they pray toward this place and confess Your name, and turn from their sin because You afflict them,
8:36. “then hear in heaven, and forgive the sin of Your servants, Your people Israel, that You may teach them the good way in which they should walk; and send rain on Your land which You have given to Your people as an inheritance.
8:37. ” When there is famine in the land, pestilence [or] blight [or] mildew, locusts [or] grasshoppers; when their enemy besieges them in the land of their cities; whatever plague or whatever sickness [there is;]
8:38. “whatever prayer, whatever supplication is made by anyone, [or] by all Your people Israel, when each one knows the plague of his own heart, and spreads out his hands toward this temple:
8:39. “then hear in heaven Your dwelling place, and forgive, and act, and give to everyone according to all his ways, whose heart You know (for You alone know the hearts of all the sons of men),
8:40. “that they may fear You all the days that they live in the land which You gave to our fathers.
8:41. ” Moreover, concerning a foreigner, who [is] not of Your people Israel, but has come from a far country for Your name’s sake
8:42. ‘(for they will hear of Your great name and Your strong hand and Your outstretched arm), when he comes and prays toward this temple,
8:43. “hear in heaven Your dwelling place, and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to You, that all peoples of the earth may know Your name and fear You, as [do] Your people Israel, and that they may know that this temple which I have built is called by Your name.
44 “When Your people go out to battle against their enemy, wherever You send them, and when they pray to the Lord toward the city which You have chosen and the temple which I have built for Your name, 45 then hear in heaven their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their [c]cause.
46 “When they sin against You (for there is no one who does not sin), and You become angry with them and deliver them to the enemy, and they take them captive to the land of the enemy, far or near; 47 yet when they [d]come to themselves in the land where they were carried captive, and repent, and make supplication to You in the land of those who took them captive, saying, ‘We have sinned and done wrong, we have committed wickedness’; 48 and when they return to You with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their enemies who led them away captive, and pray to You toward their land which You gave to their fathers, the city which You have chosen and the temple which I have built for Your name: 49 then hear in heaven Your dwelling place their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their [e]cause, 50 and forgive Your people who have sinned against You, and all their transgressions which they have transgressed against You; and grant them compassion before those who took them captive, that they may have compassion on them 51 (for they are Your people and Your inheritance, whom You brought out of Egypt, out of the iron furnace), 52 that Your eyes may be open to the supplication of Your servant and the supplication of Your people Israel, to listen to them whenever they call to You. 53 For You separated them from among all the peoples of the earth to be Your inheritance, as You spoke by Your servant Moses, when You brought our fathers out of Egypt, O Lord God.”
✝️🗒️STUDY: King Solomon gave his time and attention to prayer during the dedication of the temple. He employed the “ACTS” of prayers: Adoration, Confession of sins, Thanksgiving and Supplication. He began by adoring God (vv. 23-24) as a God above all other gods who also keeps covenants with those who are faithful to him. It is necessary that we approach God first with worship and thanksgiving. Unfortunately, some Christians prefer to spend very little time in this area. Verse 27 expresses the humility of King Solomon who did not consider the magnificent temple he built as something to boast about. He rather saw it as nothing compared to the heavens which cannot even contain God. How do you see yourself before God when you have achieved a great feat?
The content of his supplication to God was overwhelming, touching every aspect of his nation. Most important was his request for God’s presence in the temple, to hear people when they pray. Other points he raised in his prayer request were: Justice for the people, forgiveness when they sin and come back confessing, God’s intervention in times of wars, famine, and plague, etc. Brethren, let us earnestly pray for the presence of the Lord to dwell in our personal lives and the Church. Pray for our nation like King Solomon did.
✝️🙏 PRAYER: Grant us the burden to pray, Oh Lord!
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