King David watched the last of the ash blow away on the breeze. The blackened floor cooled. He turned and surveyed the land he’d just purchased.
The men with him gasped as they heard the king say, “this will be the Holy of Holies, this very spot.”
David faced the east. He waved his arms slowly in front of him. “We’ll need to excavate some of this hill away, here.” He turned around. “We may need to fill in some over there and support the lower portion with a wall, somehow.”
He looked at his assembled elders. Their mouths were open. “What are you guys waiting for. There’s work to be started here. Bring all the aliens you can find in all Israel. We need stone masons, woodworkers, goldsmiths, people to make nails–lots of nails. I may not be allowed to build the LORD’s house, but I can make the preparations for it.”
He walked to his palace. “Give the people thirty days to grieve, then, we’ll assemble so I can give Solomon the charge to build the Temple. It must be famously magnificent. Nothing can be too glorious for our God.”
Over a month later King David stood before a large gathering of his subjects. His young son, Solomon, stood next to him. “One day, as I was relaxing in my palace, a thought struck me that wouldn’t–indeed shouldn’t–let go of me. It didn’t feel right that I should enjoy the luxuries such as I had while the LORD’s dwelling was still in a tent. So, I set out to inquire as to the type of structure that would be proper for God.
“God brought word to me from my prophet, Nathan, that I wasn’t the man to build God’s Temple. As was His pleasure I was used to rid the land of the inhabitants our forefathers did not. Because of the blood I shed God disqualified me from such an endeavor.”
David placed an arm around his son. “I was told I would have a son named Solomon, a son of peace. It will be up to my son to build this tremendous dwelling for the LORD. I am in the process of acquiring all the materials for the Temple as we speak. The plans are drawn up and the land set aside. God has promised a time of peace for His people because of my victories in war. I expect all of you to do all you can to assist in this massive undertaking. There will be nothing like it in all the earth.
“Upon completion of the Temple you must move the ark of the covenant and all the holy articles here. God’s footstool shall be glorious and well furnished. He will no longer have a tent for His habitation.”
A loud cheer arose from the crowd.
David may not have seen the literal structure of the Temple being physically built, but, he did see it in his mind’s eye before he died. Such a visionary is welcome for any nation to succeed.
What we see here is one of the reasons David was called “a man after God’s heart.” He saw the inconsistency of him living in a palace while God’s ark of the covenant, the symbol of God’s presence in Israel, was in a tent.
A lesser man wouldn’t have given a thought to such a quandary. It just didn’t set right for the mighty King David.
The problem arose from the fact that a holy God couldn’t allow a blood-spilling king to be the one who would build His Temple on earth. Goliath is the first man we know of whom David killed. How many others followed is left to wild speculation.
What God did allow David to do was get all the plans and materials set aside to get this project done. Once David bought the land from Ornan things hit high-gear for this massive undertaking to commence.
David knew he was old and wouldn’t be around much longer. He also knew Solomon was young and didn’t have the where-with-all to collect all that was needed to be brought in for God’s “dwelling.”
David’s might was respected by the neighboring nations. Cedar was imported from the area surrounding Tyre and Sidon. Iron was melted down for nails. Gold, silver and bronze were collected in bulk to assure the project was gloriously furnished. No stone was left un-turned, literally, in the quarrying of stone for the massive structure.
The young nation of Israel was about to do something only powerful nations had done. A building project this grand would take several years to complete. War wasn’t going to be in their plans during this time. God made sure of that.
This Temple would be a sign to other nations of how powerful Israel’s God was. That’s why it needed to be so outlandishly fabulous.
“So, if this building was such a massive symbol of God on earth, where is it now?” You ask.
Good question, it was destroyed by the Babylonians; then, it was rebuilt only to be re-destroyed and rebuilt, yet again, only to be re-re-destroyed by the Romans in 70 AD. A Mosque currently sets on the site of the Temple.
“If it was so important for David to build such a magnificent structure why isn’t it still in place for us to see?”
It’s no longer needed.
Technically it never was a dwelling place of God since God is a Spirit and doesn’t live in a building like people do.
Everything laid out by Moses for the worship of God was fulfilled by Jesus Christ when He did all He did while on earth. During His crucifixion the Temple veil was torn from top-to-bottom by God to show there was no longer a separation between Him and us.
A personal relationship with God is now available to us. A legalistic religion simply won’t cut it.
I hope you’ve accepted this gift of a family relationship with the Creator of the universe.
If so, then…
I’ll see you later. Wade