God’s Presence

Rising Joy by Vicki Matheny

“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! … 1 Kings 8.27

King Solomon had finished constructing the Temple. The ark of the covenant had been moved to its new home. King David, his father, had gathered the necessary supplies and had left the actual task to Solomon, 1 Chronicles 22.11, 14.

Solomon recognized that God did not actually live on the earth. Jesus taught in Matthew 5.35 that the earth is God’s footstool. It cannot begin to contain him. The Temple was the place where God’s presence was recognized to be.

The Temple was destroyed long ago around the time of 70 A.D. Does that mean that we no longer have God’s presence on earth? No, God is present in those who are obedient to him, John 14.23. The body of Christ, the church, contains those who belong to God and have been added to it by him, Acts 2.47. Are you a part of that number?

#risingjoy #1-Kings #God

Happy servants

Rising Joy, Vicki Matheny

May the Lord your God be praised because he favored you by placing you on the throne of Israel! Because of the Lord’s eternal love for Israel, he made you king so you could make just and right decisions. 1 Kings 10.9

The queen of Sheba had heard about Solomon, the king of Israel. She decided to travel to Jerusalem to see for herself if what she had heard was true. As she posed her questions to Solomon, there was no question that was too difficult for him to answer. She was amazed at all that she saw in his palace. His servants were actually happy!

The result. She praised God! At the beginning of his reign, Solomon was just and made right decisions because of the wisdom that God had given him. It appears that as he grew older, he allowed his wives and concubines to pull him away from God.

We must stay alert to our spiritual health. It is important that we not lose our intensity as we grow older! Perhaps someone will look at our life and praise God for what they hear and see.

#risingjoy #1-Kings #praise

Where God is present

Rising Joy, by Vicki Matheny

“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!” 1 Kings 8.27

Solomon, David’s son, was the king of Israel. God had given David the plans for the Temple and he had gathered and prepared all of the necessary materials for its construction. But, due to the blood that David had spilled in war during his reign, God did not allow him to actually build the Temple. That task was given to Solomon. The occasion surrounding this verse was the transferal of the ark from Jerusalem to the Temple. The ark was where God had met with Moses. The ark was where God made himself present. The ark was being placed in the Temple where God would be present. Solomon prayed on behalf of Israel, exalting God. Solomon recognized that God could not be contained within the Temple. God does not live on this earth. However, God is present with us. Solomon stated in 1 Kings 8.23 that God was loyal to his servants who obeyed him. Jesus states in John 14.23 that if we obey God, he will come and live in us. Today God lives in his people, the body of Christ, which is his church.

#risingjoy #1-Kings #presence-of-God

Paralyzed by indecision: 1 Kings 18.21

“Elijah approached all the people and said, ‘How long are you going to be paralyzed by indecision? If the Lord is the true God, then follow him, but if Baal is, follow him!’ But the people did not say a word.”

1 Kings 18.21

The people of Israel desired to have both God and Baal. Elijah brought them to a point of decision. They must choose. The Lord would not allow them not to choose.

Do I want both God and some desire of mine which has become my idol? Am I suspended wanting both to serve God and to serve sin? No one can serve two masters.

#votd #1-Kings #decision

From bad to worse (1 Kings 16)

That might be an appropriate title for chapter 16 of 1 Kings: “From Bad to Worse.” Abandonment of the Lord produced debauchery, murder, division, idolatry. The chapter shows divine justice being carried out in the midst of a nation’s perfidy. Here are a few lessons from the chapter. Continue reading

#1-kings, #alcohol, #bible-lessons, #judgment, #worship

Reading in 1 Kings this morning, I notic…

Reading in 1 Kings this morning, I noticed a striking fact. The first nine chapters cover Solomon’s rise, wisdom, and activities in temple building. Chapter ten pictures his lavish wealth. Then, immediately following the riches of chapter ten comes his sorry apostasy in chapter eleven. Coincidence? And does it have anything to teach America?

#1-kings, #apostasy, #solomon