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Focal passage: 1 Chronicles 22:2-19
Background passage: 1 Chronicles 17:1-27
Context: The writer of the books of 1st and 2nd Chronicles is actually a historian, who gives an account of Israel’s history from Adam through Cyrus the Great. The books of Ezra and Nehemiah continue Israel’s story where Chronicles leaves off. The Chronicler believed that the ideal for people is peace, and that God gives peace when the nations are true to him. When people lift their voices and pray to God, they are closer to the kingdom of God than when they are fighting battles. 

Background passage: 1 Chronicles 17:1-27
Verses 1-15: David plans to build a house for the ark of the Lord. Through the prophet Nathan, God answers and says this is not David’s work to do. God has used David to fight the battles necessary to protect Israel from enemies and solidify the people as a nation. Instead of David building a house for God, God will build a house for David. God will bless David’s son and will establish his throne and show him his steadfast love forever. 

Verses 16-27: King David is overwhelmed with the goodness of God directed toward his people. David marvels at how God has chosen to use him to achieve his good purposes. In prayer, he gives his praise and thanksgiving to God for how God is at work through the nation of Israel. God has redeemed them and is in a personal relationship with them as they obey him. God protects and establishes his people. David concludes his worship of God by asking that God continue to bless the house of David. 

Focal passage: 1 Chronicles 22:2-19
Verses 2-5: We turn now to the preparations that David makes for the temple. The site for the temple has been chosen and purchased by King David. He assembles the labor who will build the temple as well as the materials which are required for construction. The materials were the best that could be found because the temple must be the most magnificent building that could be constructed in order to reflect the majesty of God. God’s temple will be outward evidence of God’s glory and reflect the majesty of God throughout the nations. The magnificence of the temple will make God known throughout the world. 

Verses 6-13: David charges Solomon with building the temple. He tells his son it had been his intent to do the construction himself, but God has told him that this is Solomon’s job because David has been a man of war. David is not blamed for his activities because most of David’s fighting has been forced upon him first in self-defense and then in national security. But God’s purpose is for all wars to cease and this is what the temple will stand for. A man of peace must construct the temple. 

God will bless Israel with peace and rest as long as Solomon continues to honor God and obey his Word. David emphasizes that Solomon must “be strong and of good courage. Do not be dismayed for God will be with you.” These are the same words that Moses spoke to Joshua before Moses died and passed the leadership torch for the nation of Israel on to the younger man (Joshua 1: 9). As Joshua followed Moses to fulfill the dream God had given to Moses, so Solomon will follow David to fulfill the great dream God has given to David. This is also the signal that a new age has begun. The age of the tabernacle is over and the age of the temple has begun. 

Both David and Solomon bring their unique contributions to God’s great plan of redemption. David serves as a warrior king and provider, and Solomon will serve as a king in peacetime and a builder. We see echoes of this thought in the New Testament when the Apostle Paul writes about the complimentary roles in Christian service. Paul says he planted the seeds, Apollos watered, and God brings the harvest (1 Cor 3:6,8).  Paul also says that he laid the foundation and others built upon that foundation with their costly stones (1 Cor. 3:10-12). 

Both Joshua and Solomon fulfill what their forerunners began. There is a continuity and a continuation of God’s purposes which are further displayed in the coming of Christ and the work of the Church. We have our own part to play in this great redemption story. And as Joshua and Solomon were commissioned so are we. There will be times when we are afraid, but those fears will be overcome when we recognize that God is with us and is working through us. As Joshua and Solomon were instructed, each of us is called to know and live according to the principles and commands revealed in Scripture. This is the life God blesses and the way he intends to continue to accomplish his purposes in the world. 

How is this principle of building upon the work of another lived out in our own church context? How is your Christian service a continuation of those who have gone before you? How do Moses’ instructions to Joshua and David’s instructions to Solomon apply to our lives today? (See Joshua 1:7-9 and 1 Chronicles 22:12-13). 

Verses 14-18: Now David charges Solomon to oversee the building but to also accumulate more incredible materials. David has done a great deal to assemble what he could even in the midst of wars and defense of the nation. God will grant Solomon a time of rest and peace and Solomon will be able to accomplish even more than his father. The list of building materials is hyperbole but represents the grandeur and costly nature of the temple. 

Verse 19: Building the temple will be for the glory of God and the good of the people. Solomon has this amazing opportunity to be a part of all that God is doing, but he must determine to stay connected to God. Solomon must continue to seek God with his mind and his heart in order to fulfill his purpose in God’s great plan. 
How does your relationship with God connect to your Christian service? What does it look like for you to seek God with your mind and heart? 

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