Daniel Agee

1st Kings 8:22-53: Solomon’s prayer at the dedication of God’s people-temple

Daniel AgeeKing Solomon built a structure for God’s presence to occupy in Yerushalayim (Jerusalem), but Solomon’s prayer points toward God’s people’s being the dwelling place of God.

Solomon’s prayer is a Messianic prayer, as though he is the Messiah addressing the Father. Solomon is giving us an example of how the Messiah acts on our behalf.

There are allusions of Deuteronomy 30 in this prayer as well. Toward the end of the prayer when Solomon states that when the people displease the Lord and the Lord has to punish them, Solomon also asks God to forgive them and ask that their captors treat them with mercy (1st Kings 8:46–53). 

Solomon asked God to preserve two things: His covenant and His kindness. The covenant is referencing to God’s covenant with David, which was a promise that a descendant of David is going to be king of all Israel forever. We understand that this promise was fulfilled in Yeshua the Messiah. 

The kindness is that when we fail, when we do something wrong, and we pray and repent that God’s mercy shows up and forgive us. God is not obligated to forgive anyone but He wants to forgive because of His own kindness and mercy. 

Solomon prays for God to hear those who pray to Him in the temple but also asks God to hear the prayers of those who pray towards the temple. We understand that there is only one God who can hear and answer prayers, whether it’s in regards to fulfilling an oath or prayers for protection from famines, pestilences, etc. 

Solomon understands that bad things are going to happen — not if but when. The Messiah understands this as well, and we are to understand this when we consider others. 

Solomon asks God: Hear prayers and forgive, give justice, mercy, recompense (to correct a wrongful judgment) and return the people to Himself.

Solomon asks the people: Praise, repent within their hearts not just with words, supplicate or make an offering and to keep their oaths and obligations.

How were the people to fulfill Solomon’s requests? They were to pray in or towards the Temple. Why would God want us to pray towards the Temple? Focusing one’s prayer towards the Temple is supposed to grab your attention and your thoughts to keep them from floating around. We need the physical to understand the spiritual. The spiritual is not a replacement for the physical, the physical was created to help us learn how to be spiritual. 

The intention is that we are to be the Temple of the Holy Spirit ourselves. When we confess our sins to our fellow believers (James 5:16), we are, in a sense, praying towards the Temple. Messiah said when two are gathered in His name, He will be there. Paul reminds us that we are not to give up gathering with fellow believers (Heb. 10:24–27), because when we are with fellow believers, we are building God’s temple with one another. 

Yeshua’s goal is not to build another brick and mortar temple but to build up a people to be His temple. God has been building for a very long time. We know that the Messiah and the Apostles are the foundation, the 12 Patriarchs of Israel are the gates, etc. God was in Solomon’s temple as He is in His people now.  

When we come together on Shabbat, or New Moons or Festival days, we come together to pray, praise and to hear and give instruction to each other. This is a part of God’s kindness. He gave us His temple in the faces of our fellow believers in Yeshua. It’s a beautiful design. 

Speaker: Daniel Agee. Summary: Tammy.


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