Thursday, March 3, 2011

Don't Forget Your Praise~

The Temple of the Lord was finally finished. Now, the day of dedication had arrived. First, Solomon brought all the gifts into the Temple.

1 So Solomon finished all his work on the Temple of the Lord. Then he brought all the gifts his father, David, had dedicated—the silver, the gold, and the various articles—and he stored them in the treasuries of the Temple of God
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Then, the Ark of the Covenant was brought to the temple and sacrifices of sheep, goats and cattle were offered up to the Lord. So many that no one could keep count.

2 Solomon then summoned to Jerusalem the elders of Israel and all the heads of tribes—the leaders of the ancestral families of Israel. 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. 3 So all the men of Israel assembled before the king at the annual Festival of Shelters, which is held in early autumn.

4 When all the elders of Israel arrived, the Levites picked up the Ark. 5 The priests and Levites brought up the Ark along with the special tent and all the sacred items that had been in it. 6 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!


Next, the Ark of the Covenant was placed in the Temple - in the Most Holy Place.

7 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. 8 The cherubim spread their wings over the Ark, forming a canopy over the Ark and its carrying poles.


And then............

13 The trumpeters and singers performed together in unison to praise and give thanks to the Lord. Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals, and other instruments, they raised their voices and praised the Lord with these words:

“He is good!
His faithful love endures forever!


and THEN!!!!!!!!.......

At that moment a thick cloud filled the Temple of the Lord. 14 The priests could not continue their service because of the cloud, for the glorious presence of the Lord filled the Temple of God. 2 Chronicles 5: 1, 7, 13,14


God presence filled the Temple of God.

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Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 1 Corinthians 3:16

For we are the temple of the living God. As God said:

“I will live in them
and walk among them.
I will be their God,
and they will be my people. 2 Corinthians 6:16

Today, God no longer lives in the temple Solomon built for Him. Now, God lives in you and me. We are His dwelling place.

At the dedication of the Temple of the Lord, the people brought gifts to God. You and I are to also bring our gifts to the Lord. Gifts of tithes and offerings, our gifts of our time and our talents. Gifts of our service.

Then the people brought the Ark of the Covenant. Inside were the tablets of stone upon which God had written His law. Now, His laws have been written in our heart. (Hebrews 8:10) Like then, God still desires obedience of His children.

Then the people offered sacrifices unto the Lord...the blood of sheep, goats, and cattle. Today, you and I are saved by the blood of Jesus and His ultimate sacrifice. We are called upon to sacrifice our life for God....to take up our cross daily, denying our self, and following after our God.

Then the people praised the Lord. It was their praises that ushered in His presence.

So often in my own life I am faithful to give, to obey, to pick up my cross. Tragically, however, I don't always offer the Lord my praise. I think it is interesting to note that all of these things bring glory to God. All of these things give Him the honor He deserves. All of these things are acceptable ways in which we worship our God. Yet, God's presence filled the Temple of the Lord AFTER the people began to praise Him.

Our giving, our obeying, our sacrificing....these all come as a direct result of our faith in God.

PRAISE....IS the result of our love for God.

Our giving, our obeying, our sacrificing....these are actions of our heart.

PRAISE....IS the outpouring of our heart.

Our giving, our obeying, our sacrificing....these are outward expressions of our worship and love for God.

PRAISE...IS a declaration of our inward expression....the expression of our heart.

Then the people praised God and His presence filled the temple.

You and I are now the temple of the Most High God. God now lives in you and me.

Today, as we offer ourselves to the Lord...to be used of Him and for Him....may we not forget to also offer Him our praise.

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