1 Kings 8:54-66

Solomon’s Benediction

54 When Solomon had finished praying this entire prayer and supplication to the Lord, he arose from before the altar of the Lord, from kneeling on his knees with his [ab]hands spread toward heaven. 55 And he stood and blessed all the assembly of Israel with a loud voice, saying:

56 “Blessed be the Lord, who has given rest to His people Israel, according to all that He [ac]promised; not one word has [ad]failed of all His good [ae]promise, which He [af]promised through Moses His servant. 57 May the Lord our God be with us, as He was with our fathers; may He not leave us or forsake us, 58 that He may incline our hearts to Himself, to walk in all His ways and to keep His commandments and His statutes and His ordinances, which He commanded our fathers. 59 And may these words of mine, with which I have made supplication before the Lord, be near to the Lord our God day and night, that He may maintain the [ag]cause of His servant and the [ah]cause of His people Israel, [ai]as each day requires, 60 so that all the peoples of the earth may know that the Lord is God; there is no one else. 61 Let your heart therefore be [aj]wholly devoted to the Lord our God, to walk in His statutes and to keep His commandments, as at this day.”

Dedicatory Sacrifices

62 Now the king and all Israel with him offered sacrifice before the Lord. 63 Solomon offered for the sacrifice of peace offerings, which he offered to the Lord, 22,000 oxen and 120,000 sheep. So the king and all the sons of Israel dedicated the house of the Lord. 64 On the same day the king consecrated the middle of the court that was before the house of the Lord, because there he [ak]offered the burnt offering and the grain offering and the fat of the peace offerings; for the bronze altar that was before the Lord was too small to hold the burnt offering and the grain offering and the fat of the peace offerings.

65 So Solomon observed the feast at that time, and all Israel with him, a great assembly from the entrance of Hamath to the brook of Egypt, before the Lord our God, for seven days and seven more days, even fourteen days. 66 On the eighth day he sent the people away and they blessed the king. Then they went to their tents joyful and glad of heart for all the goodness that the Lord had [al]shown to David His servant and to Israel His people.

Verse 57 is interesting as Solomon calls upon God to be with His people, and incline their hearts to Himself. Solomon thus clarifies, it isn’t God who moves far away, it is His children who forget to come close when He calls them.

Even at times, where we might feel like the heavens are shut, God is not distant. He is always with us, moving in us, and working in us. We must remember this fact, trust Him, and draw nearer. For He promises that as we draw near, He will draw near to us. Again, it isn’t as if God is off in somewhere where we can’t find Him. He is always there, we simply need to look for our Father and we’ll find Him.

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