1 Kings 8 GOD’S WORD Translation (GW)
The Lord Comes to His Temple
8 Then Solomon assembled the respected leaders of Israel, all the heads of the tribes, and the leaders of the Israelite families. They came to King Solomon in Jerusalem to take the ark of the Lord’s promise from the City of David (that is, Zion). 2 All the people of Israel gathered around King Solomon at the Festival ⌞of Booths⌟ in the month of Ethanim, the seventh month.
3 When all the leaders of Israel had arrived, the priests picked up the Lord’s ark. 4 They brought the ark, the tent of meeting, and all the holy utensils in it ⌞to the temple⌟. The priests and the Levites carried them 5 while King Solomon with the whole assembly from Israel were offering countless sheep and cattle sacrifices in front of the ark. 6 The priests brought the ark of the Lord’s promise to its place in the inner room of the temple (the most holy place) under the wings of the angels.[a]
7 When the angels’ outstretched wings were over the place where the ark ⌞rested⌟, the angels became a covering above the ark and its poles. 8 The poles were so long that their ends could be seen in the holy place by anyone standing in front of the inner room, but they couldn’t be seen outside. (They are still there today.) 9 There was nothing in the ark except the two stone tablets Moses put there at Horeb, where the Lord made a promise to the Israelites after they left Egypt.
10 When the priests left the holy place, a cloud filled the Lord’s temple. 11 The priests couldn’t serve because of the cloud. The Lord’s glory filled his temple.
Solomon Addresses the People
12 Then Solomon said, “The Lord said he would live in a dark cloud. 13 I certainly have built you a high temple, a home for you to live in permanently.”
14 Then the king turned around and blessed the whole assembly of Israel while they were standing. 15 “Thanks be to the Lord God of Israel. With his mouth he made a promise to my father David; with his hand he carried it out. He said, 16 ‘Ever since I brought my people Israel out of Egypt, I didn’t choose any city in any of the tribes of Israel as a place to build a temple for my name. But now I’ve chosen David to rule my people Israel.’
17 “My father David had his heart set on building a temple for the name of the Lord God of Israel. 18 However, the Lord said to my father David, ‘Since you had your heart set on building a temple for my name, your intentions were good. 19 But you must not build the temple. Instead, your own son will build the temple for my name.’ 20 The Lord has kept the promise he made. I have taken my father David’s place, and I sit on the throne of Israel as the Lord promised. I’ve built the temple for the name of the Lord God of Israel. 21 I’ve made a place there for the ark which contains the Lord’s promise that he made to our ancestors when he brought them out of Egypt.”
22 In the presence of the entire assembly of Israel, Solomon stood in front of the Lord’s altar. He stretched out his hands toward heaven 23 and said,
“Lord God of Israel,
25 “Now, Lord God of Israel,
26 “So now, God of Israel,
27 “Does God really live on earth?
31 “If anyone sins against another person
33 “An enemy may defeat your people Israel
35 “When the sky is shut and there’s no rain
37 “There may be famine in the land.
41 “People will hear about your great name,
44 “When your people go to war against their enemies
46 “They may sin against you.
52 “May your eyes always see my plea and your people Israel’s plea
Solomon Blesses the People
54 When Solomon finished praying this prayer for mercy to the Lord, he stood in front of the Lord’s altar, where he had been kneeling with his hands stretched out toward heaven. 55 Then he stood and in a loud voice blessed the entire assembly of Israel, 56 “Thanks be to the Lord! He has given his people Israel rest, as he had promised. None of the good promises he made through his servant Moses has failed to come true. 57 May the Lord our God be with us as he was with our ancestors. May he never leave us or abandon us. 58 May he bend our hearts toward him. Then we will follow him and keep his commands, laws, and rules, which he commanded our ancestors ⌞to keep⌟. 59 May these words which I have prayed to the Lord be near the Lord our God day and night. Then he will give me and his people Israel justice every day as it is needed. 60 In this way all the people of the world will know that the Lord is God and there is no other ⌞god⌟. 61 May your hearts be committed to the Lord our God. Then you will live by his laws and keep his commands as you have today.”
Solomon Offers Sacrifices
62 Then the king and all Israel offered sacrifices to the Lord. 63 Solomon sacrificed 22,000 cattle and 120,000 sheep as fellowship offerings to the Lord. So the king and all the people of Israel dedicated the Lord’s temple.
64 On that day the king designated the courtyard in front of the Lord’s temple as a holy place. He sacrificed the burnt offerings, grain offerings, and the fat from the fellowship offerings because the bronze altar in front of the Lord was too small to hold all of them.
65 At that time Solomon and all Israel celebrated the Festival ⌞of Booths⌟. A large crowd had come from ⌞the territory between⌟ the border of Hamath and the River of Egypt to be near the Lord our God for seven days.[d] 66 On the eighth day he dismissed the people. They blessed the king and went to their tents. They rejoiced with cheerful hearts for all the blessings the Lord had given his servant David and his people Israel.