So, this post is a bit of a cheat. I actually forgot to post yesterday, so I am combining the two days into one post.
We have already seen a little bit of the building process for the Temple of the Lord, and in our reading today, we read about Solomon building his own palace. What always strikes me about this story is how long Solomon took to build the Temple when compared to the length of time it took to build his own palace. 1 Kings 6:38-7:1 says:
6:38 And in the eleventh year, in the month of Bul, which is the eighth month, the house was finished in all its parts, and according to all its specifications. He was seven years in building it. 7:1 Solomon was building his own house thirteen years, and he finished his entire house.
This is one of those places in Scripture where chapter breaks are unhelpful, because if you read it like it is above, you can really see the contrast that the write is making. Solomon took nearly twice as long to build his own house than to build the temple of God. And not only that, the size and scope of the palace is significantly greater than that of the Temple.
Just imagine what that might look like: What would you say that Solomon values the most if you walked into Israel and saw the Temple, grand as it is, standing there completed while Solomon is building a palace that dwarfs the Temple in grandeur and size?
It’s pretty apparent what Solomon really valued, and it makes his blessings over the temple in the following chapters somewhat tainted.
I think that we do this constantly. Our lives are filled with evidences of the value that we place on ourselves as opposed to God. But we need to get to the place where we can truly say:
Whom have I in heaven but you, and there is no one earth I desire besides you. My heart and flesh may fail but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.