1 Kings 8:1-11

The Ark Brought into the Temple

Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, the leaders of the fathers’ households of the sons of Israel, to King Solomon in Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord from the city of David, which is Zion. All the men of Israel assembled themselves to King Solomon at the feast, in the month Ethanim, which is the seventh month. Then all the elders of Israel came, and the priests took up the ark. They brought up the ark of the Lord and the tent of meeting and all the holy utensils, which were in the tent, and the priests and the Levites brought them up. And King Solomon and all the congregation of Israel, who were assembled to him, were with him before the ark, sacrificing [a]so many sheep and oxen they could not be counted or numbered. Then the priests brought the ark of the covenant of the Lord to its place, into the inner sanctuary of the house, to the most holy place, under the wings of the cherubim. For the cherubim spread their wings over the place of the ark, and the cherubim made a covering over the ark and its poles from above. But the poles were so long that the ends of the poles could be seen from the holy place before the inner sanctuary, but they could not be seen outside; they are there to this day. There was nothing in the ark except the two tablets of stone which Moses put there at Horeb, where the Lord made a covenant with the sons of Israel, when they came out of the land of Egypt. 10 It happened that when the priests came from the holy place, the cloud filled the house of the Lord, 11 so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of the Lord.

Solomon built a house for the Lord, but it could not contain His glory. It filled the whole house. It was so radiant, so powerful, the priests were overcome. Whether they fled outside, or simply dropped to their knees, we do not know. But we do know this: our God is mighty, and glorious. No one can stand against Him, He has no rival in heaven, or on earth.

The plan that He set in motion from the very beginning, even Solomon did not know, and likely did not understand at this time. But Solomon knew that God was worthy of every gift, every treasure, every sacrifice he could make. That this temple was but a token, a humble attempt to glorify a God beyond imagination.

Yet God welcomed it, He welcomes us, for just as He chose the humble tabernacle to meet with His chosen people, He blessed the temple with His presence. And now, God himself welcomes us before His very throne, bids us “come boldly” and approach Him. Not far off in the heavens, but when we welcome Him… Yes, we may welcome the very God of the Universe, to dwell in our humble temples, our very body, our very soul. And when we do, He enters in, and dwells with us. For He is called Emmanuel, “God with us”. Not a God far away, but here, so very, very near. Just waiting for you to say “Hello” today, and remember His presence that dwells with you, and all around you… always.

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