Moving the Ark of the Covenant to Solomon’s temple.
Note: Many people find it morally objectionable that a religion requires the killing of innocent animals.
VERSE 1. Thus all the work that Solomon did for the LORD’s house was finished. Solomon brought in the things that David his father had dedicated, even the silver, the gold, and all the vessels, and put them in the treasuries of God’s house.
the work … was finished. Constructing the temple took seven years.
even the silver, the gold, and all the vessels. David and the other leaders contributed so much that Solomon’s craftsmen were not able to use it all.
This reminds us of something from the prophet Malachi:
Malachi 3:10. “Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the LORD Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. (NIV translation)
VERSE 2. Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, the princes of the fathers’ households of the children of Israel, to Jerusalem, to bring up the ark of the LORD’s covenant out of David’s city, which is Zion.
VERSE 3. So all the men of Israel assembled themselves to the king at the feast, which was in the seventh month.
which was in the seventh month. This was the Feast of Tabernacles, held in September- October of 959 BC.
VERSE 4. All the elders of Israel came. The Levites took up the ark.
VERSE 5. They brought up the ark, the Tent of Meeting, and all the holy vessels that were in the Tent. The Levitical priests brought these up.
They brought up the ark. This is a grand ceremony. It is filled with pageantry.
VERSE 6. King Solomon and all the congregation of Israel who were assembled to him were before the ark, sacrificing sheep and cattle that could not be counted or numbered for multitude.
Like David before him, Solomon celebrates the transporting of the ark by sacrificing vast numbers of animals.
The number of animals slaughtered is so high that they cannot be numbered.
VERSE 7. The priests brought in the ark of the LORD’s covenant to its place, into the inner sanctuary of the house, to the most holy place, even under the wings of the cherubim.
VERSE 8. For the cherubim spread out their wings over the place of the ark, and the cherubim covered the ark and its poles above.
VERSE 9. The poles were so long that the ends of the poles were seen from the ark in front of the inner sanctuary, but they were not seen outside; and it is there to this day.
VERSE 10. There was nothing in the ark except the two tablets which Moses put there at Horeb, when the LORD made a covenant with the children of Israel, when they came out of Egypt.
nothing in the ark except the two tablets. However, the author of Hebrews wrote that the ark also contained a golden pot of manna as well as Aaron’s rod:
Hebrews 9:4. having a golden altar of incense, and the ark of the covenant overlaid on all sides with gold, in which was a golden pot holding the manna, Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tablets of the covenant;
Those extra objects may have been added after Solomon. Or perhaps they had been lost by Solomon’s time.
VERSE 11. When the priests had come out of the holy place (for all the priests who were present had sanctified themselves, and didn’t keep their divisions;
VERSE 12. also the Levites who were the singers, all of them, even Asaph, Heman, Jeduthun, and their sons and their brothers, arrayed in fine linen, with cymbals and stringed instruments and harps, stood at the east end of the altar, and with them one hundred twenty priests sounding with shofars);
shofars. Or “trumpets.”
VERSE 13. when the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the shofars and cymbals and instruments of music, and praised the LORD, saying, “For he is good, for his loving kindness endures forever!” then the house was filled with a cloud, even the LORD’s house,
to make one sound to be heard. They were loud and joyous!
shofars. Or “trumpets.”
his loving kindness endures forever! In our day, many Christians speak of God as angry and vengeful.
However, their view is unbiblical.
The people of the Old Testament speak of the LORD God’s love and kindness.
the house was filled with a cloud. We want to see God. But we are unable to apprehend the LORD God in all his glory. So at the great moments of biblical history, he appears in the hidden form of a Cloud. Read more »
VERSE 14. so that the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud; for the LORD’s glory filled God’s house.
the priests could not stand to minister by reason of the cloud. When the presence of the LORD God manifests, our active ministry stops.
All we can do is receive. This is the essence of Contemplative Prayer. We cease active prayer. We simply receive. We absorb.
Unless otherwise noted, all Bible quotations on this page are from the World English Bible and the World Messianic Edition. These translations have no copyright restrictions. They are in the Public Domain.