Solomon then summoned to Jerusalem the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes—the leaders of the ancestral families of the Israelites. They were to bring the Ark of the LORD ’s Covenant to the Temple from its location in the City of David, also known as Zion.
So all the men of Israel assembled before King Solomon at the annual Festival of Shelters, which is held in early autumn in the month of Ethanim.
When all the elders of Israel arrived, the priests picked up the Ark.
The priests and Levites brought up the Ark of the LORD along with the special tent and all the sacred items that had been in it.
There, before the Ark, King Solomon and the entire community of Israel sacrificed so many sheep, goats, and cattle that no one could keep count!
Then the priests carried the Ark of the LORD ’s Covenant into the inner sanctuary of the Temple—the Most Holy Place—and placed it beneath the wings of the cherubim.
The cherubim spread their wings over the Ark, forming a canopy over the Ark and its carrying poles.
These poles were so long that their ends could be seen from the Holy Place, which is in front of the Most Holy Place, but not from the outside. They are still there to this day.
Nothing was in the Ark except the two stone tablets that Moses had placed in it at Mount Sinai, where the LORD made a covenant with the people of Israel when they left the land of Egypt.
When the priests came out of the Holy Place, a thick cloud filled the Temple of the LORD .
The priests could not continue their service because of the cloud, for the glorious presence of the LORD filled the Temple of the LORD .
Then Solomon prayed, “O LORD, you have said that you would live in a thick cloud of darkness.
Now I have built a glorious Temple for you, a place where you can live forever! ”