1 Kings 8

The Ark Brought into the Temple

1 1Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all 2the heads of the tribes, the leaders of the fathers' households of the sons of Israel, to King Solomon in Jerusalem, 3to bring up the ark of the covenant of the LORD from 4the city of David, which is Zion.
2 All the men of Israel assembled themselves to King Solomon at 5the feast, in the month Ethanim, which is the seventh month.
3 Then all the elders of Israel came, and 6the priests took up the ark.
4 They brought up the ark of the LORD and 7the tent of meeting and all the holy utensils, which were in the tent, and the priests and the Levites brought them up.
5 And King Solomon and all the congregation of Israel, who were assembled to him, 8were with him before the ark, sacrificing so many sheep and oxen they could not be counted or numbered.
6 Then 9the priests brought the ark of the covenant of the LORD 10to its place, into the inner sanctuary of the house, to the most holy place, 11under the wings of the cherubim.
7 For the cherubim spread their wings over the place of the ark, and the cherubim made a covering over the ark and its poles from above *.
8 But 12the poles were so long that the ends of the poles could be seen from the holy place before * the inner sanctuary, but they could not be seen outside; they are there to this day.
9 13There was nothing in the ark except the two tablets of stone which Moses put there at Horeb, where 14the LORD made a covenant with the sons of Israel, when they came out of the land of Egypt.
10 It happened that when the priests came from the holy place, 15the cloud filled the house of the LORD,
11 so that the priests could not stand to minister because * of the cloud, for the glory of the LORD filled the house of the LORD.

Solomon Addresses the People

12 16Then Solomon said, "The LORD has said that 17He would dwell in the thick cloud.
13 "18I have surely built You a lofty house, 19A place for Your dwelling forever."
14 Then the king faced * about and 20blessed all the assembly of Israel, while all the assembly of Israel was standing.
15 He said, "21Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel, 22who spoke with His mouth to my father David and has fulfilled it with His hand, saying,
16 '23Since the day that I brought My people Israel from Egypt, I did not choose a city out of all the tribes of Israel in which to build a house that 24My name might be there, but 25I chose David to be over My people Israel.'
17 "26Now it was in the heart of my father David to build a house for the name of the LORD, the God of Israel.
18 "But the LORD said to my father David, 'Because * it was in your heart to build a house for My name, you did well that it was in your heart.
19 '27Nevertheless you shall not build the house, but your son who will be born * to you, he will build the house for My name.'
20 "Now the LORD has fulfilled His word which He spoke; for 28I have risen in place of my father David and sit on the throne of Israel, as the LORD promised, and have built the house for the name of the LORD, the God of Israel.
21 "There I have set a place for the ark, 29in which is the covenant of the LORD, which He made with our fathers when He brought them from the land of Egypt."

The Prayer of Dedication

22 Then 30Solomon stood before the altar of the LORD in the presence of all the assembly of Israel and 31spread out his hands toward heaven.
23 He said, "O LORD, the God of Israel, 32there is no God like You in heaven above * or on earth beneath *, 33keeping covenant and showing lovingkindness to Your servants who walk before You with all their heart,
24 who have kept with Your servant, my father David, that which You have promised him; indeed, You have spoken with Your mouth and have fulfilled it with Your hand as it is this day.
25 "Now therefore, O LORD, the God of Israel, keep with Your servant David my father that which You have promised him, saying, '34You shall not lack a man to sit on the throne of Israel, if only your sons take heed to their way to walk before Me as you have walked.'
26 "Now therefore, O God of Israel, let Your word, I pray, be confirmed 35which You have spoken to Your servant, my father David.
27 "But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, 36heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain You, how much * less this house which I have built!
28 "Yet have regard to the 37prayer of Your servant and to his supplication, O LORD my God, to listen to the cry and to the prayer which Your servant prays before You today;
29 38that Your eyes may be open toward this house night and day, toward 39the place of which You have said, 'My name shall be there,' to listen to the prayer which Your servant shall pray toward this place.
30 "40Listen to the supplication of Your servant and of Your people Israel, 41when they pray toward this place; hear in heaven Your dwelling place; hear and 42forgive.
31 "43If a man sins against his neighbor and is made to take an oath, and he comes and takes an oath before Your altar in this house,
32 then hear in heaven and act and judge Your servants, 44condemning the wicked by bringing his way on his own head and justifying the righteous by giving him according to his righteousness.
33 "45When Your people Israel are defeated before an enemy, because they have sinned against You, 46if they turn to You again and confess Your name and pray and make supplication to You in this house,
34 then hear in heaven, and forgive the sin of Your people Israel, and bring them back to the land which You gave to their fathers.
35 "47When the heavens are shut up and there is no rain, because they have sinned against You, and they pray toward this place and confess Your name and turn from their sin when You afflict them,
36 then hear in heaven and forgive the sin of Your servants and of Your people Israel, 48indeed, teach them the good way in which they should walk. And 49send rain on Your land, which You have given Your people for an inheritance.
37 "50If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence, if there is blight or mildew, locust or grasshopper, if their enemy besieges them in the land of their cities, whatever plague, whatever sickness there is,
38 whatever * prayer or supplication is made by any man or by all Your people Israel, each knowing the affliction of his own heart, and spreading his hands toward this house;
39 then hear in heaven Your dwelling place, and forgive and act and render to each according to all his ways, 51whose heart You know, for 52You alone know the hearts of all the sons of men,
40 that they may fear You all the days that they live in the land which You have given to our fathers.
41 "Also concerning the foreigner who is not of Your people Israel, when he comes from a far country for Your name's sake
42 (for they will hear of Your great name 53and Your mighty hand, and of Your outstretched arm ); when he comes and prays toward this house,
43 hear in heaven Your dwelling place, and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to You, in order 54that all the peoples of the earth may know Your name, to fear You, as do Your people Israel, and that they may know that this house which I have built is called by Your name.
44 "When Your people go out to battle against their enemy, by whatever way You shall send them, and 55they pray to the LORD toward the city which You have chosen and the house which I have built for Your name,
45 then hear in heaven their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause.
46 "When they sin against You (for 56there is no man who does not sin ) and You are angry with them and deliver them to an enemy, so that they take them away captive 57to the land of the enemy, far off or near;
47 58if they take thought in the land where * they have been taken captive, and repent and make supplication to You in the land of those who have taken them captive, saying, '59We have sinned and have committed iniquity, we have acted wickedly ';
48 60if they return to You with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their enemies who have taken them captive, and 61pray to You toward their land which You have given to their fathers, the city which You have chosen, and the house which I have built for Your name;
49 then hear their prayer and their supplication in heaven Your dwelling place, and maintain their cause,
50 and forgive Your people who have sinned against You and all their transgressions which they have transgressed against You, and 62make them objects of compassion before those who have taken them captive, that they may have compassion on them
51 (63for they are Your people and Your inheritance which You have brought forth from Egypt, 64from the midst of the iron furnace ),
52 65that Your eyes may be open to the supplication of Your servant and to the supplication of Your people Israel, to listen to them whenever they call to You.
53 "For You have separated them from all the peoples of the earth as Your inheritance, 66as You spoke through Moses Your servant, when You brought our fathers forth from Egypt, O Lord GOD."

Solomon's Benediction

54 67When Solomon had finished praying this entire prayer and supplication to the LORD, 68he arose from before the altar of the LORD, from kneeling on his knees with his hands spread toward heaven.
55 And he stood and 69blessed all the assembly of Israel with a loud voice, saying:
56 "Blessed be the LORD, who has given rest to His people Israel, 70according to all that He promised; 71not one word has failed of all His good promise, which He promised through Moses His servant.
57 "May the LORD our God be with us, as He was with our fathers; 72may He not leave us or forsake us,
58 that 73He 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 cause of His servant and the cause of His people Israel, as each day requires,
60 so 74that all the peoples of the earth may know that 75the LORD is God; there is no one else.
61 "76Let your heart therefore be wholly devoted to the LORD our God, to walk in His statutes and to keep His commandments, as at this day."

Dedicatory Sacrifices

62 77Now the king and all Israel with him 78offered 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. 79So 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 offered the burnt offering and the grain offering and the fat of the peace offerings; for 80the 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 81Solomon observed the feast at that time, and all Israel with him, a great assembly 82from the entrance of Hamath 83to 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 shown to David His servant and to Israel His people.

Images for 1 Kings 8

1 Kings 8 Commentary

Chapter 8

The dedication of the temple. (1-11) The occasion. (12-21) Solomon's prayer. (22-53) His blessing and exhortation. (54-61) Solomon's peace-offerings. (62-66)

Verses 1-11 The bringing in the ark, is the end which must crown the work: this was done with great solemnity. The ark was fixed in the place appointed for its rest in the inner part of the house, whence they expected God to speak to them, even in the most holy place. The staves of the ark were drawn out, so as to direct the high priest to the mercy-seat over the ark, when he went in, once a year, to sprinkle the blood there; so that they continued of use, though there was no longer occasion to carry it by them. The glory of God appearing in a cloud may signify, 1. The darkness of that dispensation, in comparison with the light of the gospel, by which, with open face, we behold, as in a glass, the glory of the Lord. 2. The darkness of our present state, in comparison with the sight of God, which will be the happiness of heaven, where the Divine glory is unveiled.

Verses 12-21 Solomon encouraged the priests, who were much astonished at the dark cloud. The dark dispensations of Providence should quicken us in fleeing for refuge to the hope of the gospel. Nothing can more reconcile us to them, than to consider what God has said, and to compare his word and works together. Whatever good we do, we must look on it as the performance of God's promise to us, not of our promises to him.

Verses 22-53 In this excellent prayer, Solomon does as we should do in every prayer; he gives glory to God. Fresh experiences of the truth of God's promises call for larger praises. He sues for grace and favour from God. The experiences we have of God's performing his promises, should encourage us to depend upon them, and to plead them with him; and those who expect further mercies, must be thankful for former mercies. God's promises must be the guide of our desires, and the ground of our hopes and expectations in prayer. The sacrifices, the incense, and the whole service of the temple, were all typical of the Redeemer's offices, oblation, and intercession. The temple, therefore, was continually to be remembered. Under one word, "forgive," Solomon expressed all that he could ask in behalf of his people. For, as all misery springs from sin, forgiveness of sin prepares the way for the removal of every evil, and the receiving of every good. Without it, no deliverance can prove a blessing. In addition to the teaching of the word of God, Solomon entreated the Lord himself to teach the people to profit by all, even by their chastisements. They shall know every man the plague of his own heart, what it is that pains him; and shall spread their hands in prayer toward this house; whether the trouble be of body or mind, they shall represent it before God. Inward burdens seem especially meant. Sin is the plague of our own hearts; our in-dwelling corruptions are our spiritual diseases: every true Israelite endeavours to know these, that he may mortify them, and watch against the risings of them. These drive him to his knees; lamenting these, he spreads forth his hands in prayer. After many particulars, Solomon concludes with the general request, that God would hearken to his praying people. No place, now, under the gospel, can add to the prayers made in or towards it. The substance is Christ; whatever we ask in his name, it shall be given us. In this manner the Israel of God is established and sanctified, the backslider is recovered and healed. In this manner the stranger is brought nigh, the mourner is comforted, the name of God is glorified. Sin is the cause of all our troubles; repentance and forgiveness lead to all human happiness.

Verses 54-61 Never was a congregation dismissed with what was more likely to affect them, and to abide with them. What Solomon asks for in this prayer, is still granted in the intercession of Christ, of which his supplication was a type. We shall receive grace sufficient, suitable, and seasonable, in every time of need. No human heart is of itself willing to obey the gospel call to repentance, faith, and newness of life, walking in all the commandments of the Lord, yet Solomon exhorts the people to be perfect. This is the scriptural method, it is our duty to obey the command of the law and the call of the gospel, seeing we have broken the law. When our hearts are inclined thereto, feeling our sinfulness and weakness, we pray for Divine assistance; thus are we made able to serve God through Jesus Christ.

Verses 62-66 Solomon offered a great sacrifice. He kept the feast of tabernacles, as it seems, after the feast of dedication. Thus should we go home, rejoicing, from holy ordinances, thankful for God's Goodness

Cross References 83

  • 1. 2 Chronicles 5:2-10
  • 2. Numbers 1:4; Numbers 7:2
  • 3. 2 Samuel 6:12-17; 1 Chronicles 15:25-29
  • 4. 2 Samuel 5:7
  • 5. Leviticus 23:34; 1 Kings 8:65; 2 Chronicles 7:8-10
  • 6. Numbers 7:9; Deuteronomy 31:9; Joshua 3:3, 6
  • 7. 1 Kings 3:4; 2 Chronicles 1:3
  • 8. 2 Samuel 6:13; 2 Chronicles 1:6
  • 9. 1 Kings 8:3
  • 10. 1 Kings 6:19
  • 11. 1 Kings 6:27
  • 12. Exodus 25:13-15; Exodus 37:4, 5
  • 13. Exodus 25:16, 21; Deuteronomy 10:2-5; Hebrews 9:4
  • 14. Exodus 24:7, 8; Exodus 40:20; Deuteronomy 4:13
  • 15. Exodus 40:34, 35; 2 Chronicles 7:1, 2
  • 16. 2 Chronicles 6:1
  • 17. Leviticus 16:2; Psalms 18:11; Psalms 97:2
  • 18. 2 Samuel 7:13
  • 19. Exodus 15:17; Psalms 132:14
  • 20. 2 Samuel 6:18; 1 Kings 8:55
  • 21. 1 Chronicles 29:10, 20; Nehemiah 9:5; Luke 1:68
  • 22. 2 Samuel 7:12, 13; 1 Chronicles 22:10
  • 23. 2 Samuel 7:4, 5; 1 Chronicles 17:3-10; 2 Chronicles 6:5
  • 24. Deuteronomy 12:5, 11
  • 25. 1 Samuel 16:1; 2 Samuel 7:8
  • 26. 2 Samuel 7:2, 3; 1 Chronicles 17:1, 2
  • 27. 2 Sam 7:5, 12, 13; 1 Kings 5:3, 5; 1 Chronicles 17:11, 12; 1 Chronicles 22:8-10
  • 28. 1 Chronicles 28:5, 6
  • 29. Deuteronomy 31:26; 1 Kings 8:9
  • 30. 1 Kings 8:54; 2 Chronicles 6:12
  • 31. Exodus 9:33; Ezra 9:5
  • 32. 1 Samuel 2:2; 2 Samuel 7:22
  • 33. Deuteronomy 7:9; Nehemiah 1:5; Nehemiah 9:32; Daniel 9:4
  • 34. 1 Kings 2:4
  • 35. 2 Samuel 7:25
  • 36. 2 Chronicles 2:6; Psalms 139:7-16; Isaiah 66:1; Jeremiah 23:24; Acts 7:49
  • 37. Philippians 4:6
  • 38. 2 Chronicles 7:15; Nehemiah 1:6
  • 39. Deuteronomy 12:11
  • 40. Nehemiah 1:6
  • 41. Daniel 6:10
  • 42. Exodus 34:6, 7; Psalms 85:2; Daniel 9:9; 1 John 1:9
  • 43. Exodus 22:8-11
  • 44. Deuteronomy 25:1
  • 45. Leviticus 26:17, 25; Deuteronomy 28:25, 48
  • 46. Leviticus 26:40-42
  • 47. Leviticus 26:19; Deuteronomy 11:16, 17; 2 Samuel 24:10-13
  • 48. 1 Samuel 12:23; Psalms 5:8; Psalms 25:4, 5; Psalms 27:11; Psalms 86:11; Psalms 119:133; Jeremiah 6:16
  • 49. 1 Kin 18:1, 41-45; Jeremiah 14:22
  • 50. Lev 26:16, 25, 26; Deut 28:21-23, 38-42
  • 51. 1 Samuel 2:3; 1 Samuel 16:7
  • 52. 1 Chronicles 28:9; Psalms 11:4; Jeremiah 17:10; John 2:24, 25; Acts 1:24
  • 53. Exodus 13:3; Deuteronomy 3:24
  • 54. Joshua 4:23, 24; 1 Samuel 17:46; Psalms 67:2
  • 55. 2 Chronicles 14:11
  • 56. Psalms 130:3, 4; Psalms 143:2; Proverbs 20:9; Ecclesiastes 7:20; Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8-10
  • 57. Leviticus 26:34-39; 2 Kings 17:6, 18; 2 Kings 25:21
  • 58. Leviticus 26:40-42; Nehemiah 9:2
  • 59. Ezra 9:6, 7; Nehemiah 1:6; Psalms 106:6; Daniel 9:5
  • 60. Deuteronomy 4:29; 1 Samuel 7:3, 4; Nehemiah 1:9
  • 61. Daniel 6:10; Jonah 2:4
  • 62. 2 Chronicles 30:9; Psalms 106:46; Acts 7:10
  • 63. Exodus 32:11, 12; Deuteronomy 9:26-29
  • 64. Deuteronomy 4:20; Jeremiah 11:4
  • 65. 1 Kings 8:29
  • 66. Exodus 19:5, 6; Deuteronomy 9:26-29
  • 67. 2 Chronicles 7:1
  • 68. 2 Chronicles 6:13
  • 69. Numbers 6:23-26; 2 Samuel 6:18; 1 Kings 8:14
  • 70. Deuteronomy 12:10
  • 71. Joshua 21:45; Joshua 23:14, 15
  • 72. Deuteronomy 31:6, 17; Joshua 1:5; 1 Samuel 12:22; Romans 8:31; Hebrews 13:5
  • 73. Psalms 119:36; Jeremiah 31:33
  • 74. Joshua 4:24; 1 Samuel 17:46; 1 Kings 8:43; 2 Kings 19:19
  • 75. Deuteronomy 4:35; 1 Kings 18:39; Jeremiah 10:10-12
  • 76. Deuteronomy 18:13; 1 Kings 11:4; 2 Kings 20:3
  • 77. 2 Chronicles 7:4-10
  • 78. 2 Samuel 6:17-19; Ezra 6:16, 17
  • 79. Ezra 6:15-18; Nehemiah 12:27
  • 80. 2 Chronicles 4:1
  • 81. Leviticus 23:34-42; 1 Kings 8:2
  • 82. Numbers 34:8; Joshua 13:5; Judges 3:3; 2 Kings 14:25
  • 83. Genesis 15:18; Exodus 23:31; Numbers 34:5; Joshua 13:3

Footnotes 38

Chapter Summary


This chapter gives an account of the introduction of the ark into the temple, 1Ki 8:1-9 of the glory of the Lord filling it, 1Ki 8:10,11 of a speech Solomon made to the people concerning the building of the temple, and how he came to be engaged in it, 1Ki 8:12-21, of a prayer of his he put up on this occasion, requesting, that what supplications soever were made at any time, or on any account, by Israelites or strangers, might be accepted by the Lord, 1Ki 8:22-53, and of his blessing the people of Israel at the close of it, with some useful exhortations, 1Ki 8:54-61, and of the great number of sacrifices offered up by him, and the feast he made for the people, upon which he dismissed them, 1Ki 8:62-66.

1 Kings 8 Commentaries