Daily Bible Reading
Today's reading: 1 Kings 7-9
Look for the promises in God’s word. As you read and find them, write them in your journal along with the scripture reference.
1 Kings 7
The Building of the Royal Palace
1. Solomon took thirteen years to build his palace.
2. He named it “The Palace of the Lebanon Forest”; it was 150 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet high. It had four rows of cedar pillars and cedar beams above the pillars.
3. The roof above the beams supported by the pillars was also made of cedar; there were forty-five beams, fifteen per row.
4. There were three rows of windows arranged in sets of three.
5. All of the entrances were rectangular in shape and they were arranged in sets of three.
6. He made a colonnade 75 feet long and 45 feet wide. There was a porch in front of this and pillars and a roof in front of the porch.
7. He also made a throne room, called “The Hall of Judgment,” where he made judicial decisions. It was paneled with cedar from the floor to the rafters.
8. The palace where he lived was constructed in a similar way. He also constructed a palace like this hall for Pharaoh’s daughter, whom he had married.
9. All of these were built with the best stones, chiseled to the right size and cut with a saw on all sides, from the foundation to the edge of the roof and from the outside to the great courtyard.
10. The foundation was made of large valuable stones, measuring either 15 feet or 12 feet.
11. Above the foundation the best stones, chiseled to the right size, were used along with cedar.
12. Around the great courtyard were three rows of chiseled stones and one row of cedar beams, like the inner courtyard of the Lord’s temple and the hall of the palace.
Solomon Commissions Hiram to Supply the Temple
13. King Solomon sent for Hiram of Tyre.
14. He was the son of a widow from the tribe of Naphtali, and his father was a craftsman in bronze from Tyre. He had the skill and knowledge to make all kinds of works of bronze. He reported to King Solomon and did all the work he was assigned.
15. He fashioned two bronze pillars; each pillar was 27 feet high and 18 feet in circumference.
16. He made two bronze tops for the pillars; each was seven-and-a-half feet high.
17. The latticework on the tops of the pillars was adorned with ornamental wreaths and chains; the top of each pillar had seven groupings of ornaments.
18. When he made the pillars, there were two rows of pomegranate-shaped ornaments around the latticework covering the top of each pillar.
19. The tops of the two pillars in the porch were shaped like lilies and were six feet high.
20. On the top of each pillar, right above the bulge beside the latticework, there were two hundred pomegranate-shaped ornaments arranged in rows all the way around.
21. He set up the pillars on the porch in front of the main hall. He erected one pillar on the right side and called it Jakin; he erected the other pillar on the left side and called it Boaz.
22. The tops of the pillars were shaped like lilies. So the construction of the pillars was completed.
23. He also made the large bronze basin called “The Sea.” It measured 15 feet from rim to rim, was circular in shape, and stood seven-and-a-half feet high. Its circumference was 45 feet.
24. Under the rim all the way around it were round ornaments arranged in settings 15 feet long. The ornaments were in two rows and had been cast with “The Sea.”
25. “The Sea” stood on top of twelve bulls. Three faced northward, three westward, three southward, and three eastward. “The Sea” was placed on top of them, and they all faced outward.
26. It was four fingers thick and its rim was like that of a cup shaped like a lily blossom. It could hold about 12,000 gallons.
27. He also made ten bronze movable stands. Each stand was six feet long, six feet wide, and four-and-a-half feet high.
28. The stands were constructed with frames between the joints.
29. On these frames and joints were ornamental lions, bulls, and cherubs. Under the lions and bulls were decorative wreaths.
30. Each stand had four bronze wheels with bronze axles and four supports. Under the basin the supports were fashioned on each side with wreaths.
31. Inside the stand was a round opening that was a foot-and-a-half deep; it had a support that was two and one-quarter feet long. On the edge of the opening were carvings in square frames.
32. The four wheels were under the frames and the crossbars of the axles were connected to the stand. Each wheel was two and one-quarter feet high.
33. The wheels were constructed like chariot wheels; their crossbars, rims, spokes, and hubs were made of cast metal.
34. Each stand had four supports, one per side projecting out from the stand.
35. On top of each stand was a round opening three-quarters of a foot deep; there were also supports and frames on top of the stands.
36. He engraved ornamental cherubs, lions, and palm trees on the plates of the supports and frames wherever there was room, with wreaths all around.
37. He made the ten stands in this way. All of them were cast in one mold and were identical in measurements and shape.
38. He also made ten bronze basins, each of which could hold about 240 gallons. Each basin was six feet in diameter; there was one basin for each stand.
39. He put five basins on the south side of the temple and five on the north side. He put “The Sea” on the south side, in the southeast corner.
40. Hiram also made basins, shovels, and bowls. He finished all the work on the Lord’s temple he had been assigned by King Solomon.
41. He made the two pillars, the two bowl-shaped tops of the pillars, the latticework for the bowl-shaped tops of the two pillars,
42. the four hundred pomegranate-shaped ornaments for the latticework of the two pillars (each latticework had two rows of these ornaments at the bowl-shaped top of the pillar),
43. the ten movable stands with their ten basins,
44. the big bronze basin called “The Sea” with its twelve bulls underneath,
45. and the pots, shovels, and bowls. All these items King Solomon assigned Hiram to make for the Lord’s temple were made from polished bronze.
46. The king had them cast in earth foundries in the region of the Jordan between Succoth and Zarethan.
47. Solomon left all these items unweighed; there were so many of them they did not weigh the bronze.
48. Solomon also made all these items for the Lord’s temple: the gold altar, the gold table on which was kept the Bread of the Presence,
49. the pure gold lampstands at the entrance to the inner sanctuary (five on the right and five on the left), the gold flower-shaped ornaments, lamps, and tongs,
50. the pure gold bowls, trimming shears, basins, pans, and censers, and the gold door sockets for the inner sanctuary (the most holy place) and for the doors of the main hall of the temple.
51. When King Solomon finished constructing the Lord’s temple, he put the holy items that belonged to his father David (the silver, gold, and other articles) in the treasuries of the Lord’s temple.
1 Kings 8
Solomon Moves the Ark into the Temple
1. Then Solomon convened in Jerusalem Israel’s elders, all the leaders of the Israelite tribes and families, so they could witness the transferal of the ark of the Lord’s covenant from the city of David (that is, Zion).
2. All the men of Israel assembled before King Solomon during the festival in the month Ethanim (the seventh month).
3. When all Israel’s elders had arrived, the priests lifted the ark.
4. The priests and Levites carried the ark of the Lord, the tent of meeting, and all the holy items in the tent.
5. Now King Solomon and all the Israelites who had assembled with him went on ahead of the ark and sacrificed more sheep and cattle than could be counted or numbered.
6. The priests brought the ark of the Lord’s covenant to its assigned place in the inner sanctuary of the temple, in the most holy place, under the wings of the cherubs.
7. The cherubs’ wings extended over the place where the ark sat; the cherubs overshadowed the ark and its poles.
8. The poles were so long their ends were visible from the holy place in front of the inner sanctuary, but they could not be seen from beyond that point. They have remained there to this very day.
9. There was nothing in the ark except the two stone tablets Moses had placed there in Horeb. It was there that the Lord made an agreement with the Israelites after he brought them out of the land of Egypt.
10. Once the priests left the holy place, a cloud filled the Lord’s temple.
11. The priests could not carry out their duties because of the cloud; the Lord’s glory filled his temple.
12. Then Solomon said, “The Lord has said that he lives in thick darkness.
13. O Lord, truly I have built a lofty temple for you, a place where you can live permanently.”
14. Then the king turned around and pronounced a blessing over the whole Israelite assembly as they stood there.
15. He said, “The Lord God of Israel is worthy of praise because he has fulfilled what he promised my father David.
16. He told David, ‘Since the day I brought my people Israel out of Egypt, I have not chosen a city from all the tribes of Israel to build a temple in which to live. But I have chosen David to lead my people Israel.’
17. Now my father David had a strong desire to build a temple to honor the Lord God of Israel.
18. The Lord told my father David, ‘It is right for you to have a strong desire to build a temple to honor me.
19. But you will not build the temple; your very own son will build the temple for my honor.’
20. The Lord has kept the promise he made. I have taken my father David’s place and have occupied the throne of Israel, as the Lord promised. I have built this temple for the honor of the Lord God of Israel
21. and set up in it a place for the ark containing the covenant the Lord made with our ancestors when he brought them out of the land of Egypt.”
Solomon Prays for Israel
22. Solomon stood before the altar of the Lord in front of the entire assembly of Israel and spread out his hands toward the sky.
23. He prayed: “O Lord, God of Israel, there is no god like you in heaven above or on earth below! You maintain covenantal loyalty to your servants who obey you with sincerity.
24. You have kept your word to your servant, my father David; this very day you have fulfilled what you promised.
25. Now, O Lord, God of Israel, keep the promise you made to your servant, my father David, when you said, ‘You will never fail to have a successor ruling before me on the throne of Israel, provided that your descendants watch their step and serve me as you have done.’
26. Now, O God of Israel, may the promise you made to your servant, my father David, be realized.
27. “God does not really live on the earth! Look, if the sky and the highest heaven cannot contain you, how much less this temple I have built!
28. But respond favorably to your servant’s prayer and his request for help, O Lord my God. Answer the desperate prayer your servant is presenting to you today.
29. Night and day may you watch over this temple, the place where you promised you would live. May you answer your servant’s prayer for this place.
30. Respond to the request of your servant and your people Israel for this place. Hear from inside your heavenly dwelling place and respond favorably.
31. “When someone is accused of sinning against his neighbor and the latter pronounces a curse on the alleged offender before your altar in this temple, be willing to forgive the accused if the accusation is false.
32. Listen from heaven and make a just decision about your servants’ claims. Condemn the guilty party, declare the other innocent, and give both of them what they deserve.
33. “The time will come when your people Israel are defeated by an enemy because they sinned against you. If they come back to you, renew their allegiance to you, and pray for your help in this temple,
34. then listen from heaven, forgive the sin of your people Israel, and bring them back to the land you gave to their ancestors.
35. “The time will come when the skies are shut up tightly and no rain falls because your people sinned against you. When they direct their prayers toward this place, renew their allegiance to you, and turn away from their sin because you punish them,
36. then listen from heaven and forgive the sin of your servants, your people Israel. Certainly you will then teach them the right way to live and send rain on your land that you have given your people to possess.
37. “The time will come when the land suffers from a famine, a plague, blight and disease, or a locust invasion, or when their enemy lays siege to the cities of the land, or when some other type of plague or epidemic occurs.
38. When all your people Israel pray and ask for help, as they acknowledge their pain and spread out their hands toward this temple,
39. then listen from your heavenly dwelling place, forgive their sin, and act favorably toward each one based on your evaluation of his motives. (Indeed you are the only one who can correctly evaluate the motives of all people.)
40. Then they will obey you throughout their lifetimes as they live on the land you gave to our ancestors.
41. “Foreigners, who do not belong to your people Israel, will come from a distant land because of your reputation.
42. When they hear about your great reputation and your ability to accomplish mighty deeds, they will come and direct their prayers toward this temple.
43. Then listen from your heavenly dwelling place and answer all the prayers of the foreigners. Then all the nations of the earth will acknowledge your reputation, obey you like your people Israel do, and recognize that this temple I built belongs to you.
44. “When you direct your people to march out and fight their enemies, and they direct their prayers to the Lord toward his chosen city and this temple I built for your honor,
45. then listen from heaven to their prayers for help and vindicate them.
46. “The time will come when your people will sin against you (for there is no one who is sinless!) and you will be angry with them and deliver them over to their enemies, who will take them as prisoners to their own land, whether far away or close by.
47. When your people come to their senses in the land where they are held prisoner, they will repent and beg for your mercy in the land of their imprisonment, admitting, ‘We have sinned and gone astray; we have done evil.’
48. When they return to you with all their heart and being in the land where they are held prisoner, and direct their prayers to you toward the land you gave to their ancestors, your chosen city, and the temple I built for your honor,
49. then listen from your heavenly dwelling place to their prayers for help and vindicate them.
50. Forgive all the rebellious acts of your sinful people and cause their captors to have mercy on them.
51. After all, they are your people and your special possession whom you brought out of Egypt, from the middle of the iron-smelting furnace.
52. “May you be attentive to your servant’s and your people Israel’s requests for help and may you respond to all their prayers to you.
53. After all, you picked them out of all the nations of the earth to be your special possession, just as you, O sovereign Lord, announced through your servant Moses when you brought our ancestors out of Egypt.”
54. When Solomon finished presenting all these prayers and requests to the Lord, he got up from before the altar of the Lord where he had kneeled and spread out his hands toward the sky.
55. When he stood up, he pronounced a blessing over the entire assembly of Israel, saying in a loud voice:
56. “The Lord is worthy of praise because he has made Israel his people secure just as he promised! Not one of all the faithful promises he made through his servant Moses is left unfulfilled!
57. May the Lord our God be with us, as he was with our ancestors. May he not abandon us or leave us.
58. May he make us submissive, so we can follow all his instructions and obey the commandments, rules, and regulations he commanded our ancestors.
59. May the Lord our God be constantly aware of these requests of mine I have presented to him, so that he might vindicate his servant and his people Israel as the need arises.
60. Then all the nations of the earth will recognize that the Lord is the only genuine God.
61. May you demonstrate wholehearted devotion to the Lord our God by following his rules and obeying his commandments, as you are presently doing.”
Solomon Dedicates the Temple
62. The king and all Israel with him were presenting sacrifices to the Lord.
63. Solomon offered as peace offerings to the Lord 22,000 cattle and 120,000 sheep. Then the king and all the Israelites dedicated the Lord’s temple.
64. That day the king consecrated the middle of the courtyard that is in front of the Lord’s temple. He offered there burnt sacrifices, grain offerings, and the fat from the peace offerings, because the bronze altar that stood before the Lord was too small to hold all these offerings.
65. At that time Solomon and all Israel with him celebrated a festival before the Lord our God for two entire weeks. This great assembly included people from all over the land, from Lebo Hamath in the north to the Brook of Egypt in the south.
66. On the fifteenth day after the festival started, he dismissed the people. They asked God to empower the king and then went to their homes, happy and content because of all the good the Lord had done for his servant David and his people Israel.
1 Kings 9
The Lord Gives Solomon a Promise and a Warning
1. After Solomon finished building the Lord’s temple, the royal palace, and all the other construction projects he had planned,
2. the Lord appeared to Solomon a second time, in the same way he had appeared to him at Gibeon.
3. The Lord said to him, “I have answered your prayer and your request for help that you made to me. I have consecrated this temple you built by making it my permanent home; I will be constantly present there.
4. You must serve me with integrity and sincerity, just as your father David did. Do everything I commanded and obey my rules and regulations.
5. Then I will allow your dynasty to rule over Israel permanently, just as I promised your father David, ‘You will not fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.’
6. “But if you or your sons ever turn away from me, fail to obey the regulations and rules I instructed you to keep, and decide to serve and worship other gods,
7. then I will remove Israel from the land I have given them, I will abandon this temple I have consecrated with my presence, and Israel will be mocked and ridiculed among all the nations.
8. This temple will become a heap of ruins; everyone who passes by it will be shocked and will hiss out their scorn, saying, ‘Why did the Lord do this to this land and this temple?’
9. Others will then answer, ‘Because they abandoned the Lord their God, who led their ancestors out of Egypt. They embraced other gods whom they worshiped and served. That is why the Lord has brought all this disaster down on them.’”
Foreign Affairs and Building Projects
10. After twenty years, during which Solomon built the Lord’s temple and the royal palace,
11. King Solomon gave King Hiram of Tyre twenty cities in the region of Galilee, because Hiram had supplied Solomon with cedars, evergreens, and all the gold he wanted.
12. When Hiram went out from Tyre to inspect the cities Solomon had given him, he was not pleased with them.
13. Hiram asked, “Why did you give me these cities, my friend?” He called that area the region of Cabul, a name which it has retained to this day.
14. Hiram had sent to the king one hundred twenty talents of gold.
15. Here are the details concerning the work crews King Solomon conscripted to build the Lord’s temple, his palace, the terrace, the wall of Jerusalem, and the cities of Hazor, Megiddo, and Gezer.
16. (Pharaoh, king of Egypt, had attacked and captured Gezer. He burned it and killed the Canaanites who lived in the city. He gave it as a wedding present to his daughter, who had married Solomon.)
17. Solomon built up Gezer, lower Beth Horon,
18. Baalath, Tadmor in the wilderness,
19. all the storage cities that belonged to him, and the cities where chariots and horses were kept. He built whatever he wanted in Jerusalem, Lebanon, and throughout his entire kingdom.
20. Now several non-Israelite peoples were left in the land after the conquest of Joshua, including the Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites.
21. Their descendants remained in the land (the Israelites were unable to wipe them out completely). Solomon conscripted them for his work crews, and they continue in that role to this very day.
22. Solomon did not assign Israelites to these work crews; the Israelites served as his soldiers, attendants, officers, charioteers, and commanders of his chariot forces.
23. These men were also in charge of Solomon’s work projects; there were a total of 550 men who supervised the workers.
24. Solomon built the terrace as soon as Pharaoh’s daughter moved up from the city of David to the palace Solomon built for her.
25. Three times a year Solomon offered burnt offerings and peace offerings on the altar he had built for the Lord, burning incense along with them before the Lord. He made the temple his official worship place.
26. King Solomon also built ships in Ezion Geber, which is located near Elat in the land of Edom, on the shore of the Red Sea.
27. Hiram sent his fleet and some of his sailors, who were well acquainted with the sea, to serve with Solomon’s men.
28. They sailed to Ophir, took from there four hundred twenty talents of gold, and then brought them to King Solomon.