They are, after all, your people and your precious inheritance whom you rescued from the heart of that iron-smelting furnace, Egypt!
O be alert and attentive to the needy prayers of me, your servant, and your dear people Israel; listen every time they cry out to you!
You handpicked them from all the peoples on earth to be your very own people, as you announced through your servant Moses when you, O God, in your masterful rule, delivered our ancestors from Egypt.
Having finished praying to God - all these bold and passionate prayers - Solomon stood up before God's Altar where he had been kneeling all this time, his arms stretched upward to heaven.
Standing, he blessed the whole congregation of Israel, blessing them at the top of his lungs:
"Blessed be God, who has given peace to his people Israel just as he said he'd do. Not one of all those good and wonderful words that he spoke through Moses has misfired.
May God, our very own God, continue to be with us just as he was with our ancestors - may he never give up and walk out on us.
May he keep us centered and devoted to him, following the life path he has cleared, watching the signposts, walking at the pace and rhythms he laid down for our ancestors.
"And let these words that I've prayed in the presence of God be always right there before him, day and night, so that he'll do what is right for me, to guarantee justice for his people Israel day after day after day.
Then all the people on earth will know God is the true God; there is no other God.
And you, your lives must be totally obedient to God, our personal God, following the life path he has cleared, alert and attentive to everything he has made plain this day."
Published by permission. Originally published by NavPress in English as THE MESSAGE: The Bible in Contemporary Language copyright 2002 by Eugene Peterson. All rights reserved. (The Message Bible Online)