2 Chronicles 6-8 Revised Standard Version

The Dedication of the Temple

6 1  Then Solomon said, "The Lord has said that he would dwell in thick darkness. 2  I have built thee an exalted house, a place for thee to dwell in for ever." 3  Then the king faced about, and blessed all the assembly of Israel, while all the assembly of Israel stood. 4  And he said, "Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who with his hand has fulfilled what he promised with his mouth to David my father, saying, 5  'Since the day that I brought my people out of the land of Egypt, I chose no city in all the tribes of Israel in which to build a house, that my name might be there, and I chose no man as prince over my people Israel; 6  but I have chosen Jerusalem that my name may be there and I have chosen David to be over my people Israel.' 7  Now it was in the heart of David my father to build a house for the name of the Lord, the God of Israel. 8  But the Lord said to David my father, 'Whereas it was in your heart to build a house for my name, you did well that it was in your heart; 9  nevertheless you shall not build the house, but your son who shall be born to you shall build the house for my name.' 10  Now the Lord has fulfilled his promise which he made; for I have risen in the place of David my father, and sit on the throne of Israel, as the Lord promised, and I have built the house for the name of the Lord, the God of Israel. 11  And there I have set the ark, in which is the covenant of the Lord which he made with the people of Israel."

12  Then Solomon stood before the altar of the Lord in the presence of all the assembly of Israel, and spread forth his hands. 13  Solomon had made a bronze platform five cubits long, five cubits wide, and three cubits high, and had set it in the court; and he stood upon it. Then he knelt upon his knees in the presence of all the assembly of Israel, and spread forth his hands toward heaven; 14  and said, "O Lord, God of Israel, there is no God like thee, in heaven or on earth, keeping covenant and showing steadfast love to thy servants who walk before thee with all their heart; 15  who hast kept with thy servant David my father what thou didst declare to him; yea, thou didst speak with thy mouth, and with thy hand hast fulfilled it this day. 16  Now therefore, O Lord, God of Israel, keep with thy servant David my father what thou hast promised him, saying, 'There shall never fail you a man before me to sit upon the throne of Israel, if only your sons take heed to their way, to walk in my law as you have walked before me.' 17  Now therefore, O Lord, God of Israel, let thy word be confirmed, which thou hast spoken to thy servant David. 18  "But will God dwell indeed with man on the earth? Behold, heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain thee; how much less this house which I have built! 19  Yet have regard to the prayer of thy servant and to his supplication, O Lord my God, hearkening to the cry and to the prayer which thy servant prays before thee; 20  that thy eyes may be open day and night toward this house, the place where thou hast promised to set thy name, that thou mayest hearken to the prayer which thy servant offers toward this place. 21  And hearken thou to the supplications of thy servant and of thy people Israel, when they pray toward this place; yea, hear thou from heaven thy dwelling place; and when thou hearest, forgive. 22  "If a man sins against his neighbor and is made to take an oath, and comes and swears his oath before thy altar in this house, 23  then hear thou from heaven, and act, and judge thy servants, requiting the guilty by bringing his conduct upon his own head, and vindicating the righteous by rewarding him according to his righteousness. 24  "If thy people Israel are defeated before the enemy because they have sinned against thee, when they turn again and acknowledge thy name, and pray and make supplication to thee in this house, 25  then hear thou from heaven, and forgive the sin of thy people Israel, and bring them again to the land which thou gavest to them and to their fathers. 26  "When heaven is shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against thee, if they pray toward this place, and acknowledge thy name, and turn from their sin, when thou dost afflict them, 27  then hear thou in heaven, and forgive the sin of thy servants, thy people Israel, when thou dost teach them the good way in which they should walk; and grant rain upon thy land, which thou hast given to thy people as an inheritance. 28  "If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence or blight or mildew or locust or caterpillar; if their enemies besiege them in any of their cities; whatever plague, whatever sickness there is; 29  whatever prayer, whatever supplication is made by any man or by all thy people Israel, each knowing his own affliction, and his own sorrow and stretching out his hands toward this house; 30  then hear thou from heaven thy dwelling place, and forgive, and render to each whose heart thou knowest, according to all his ways (for thou, thou only, knowest the hearts of the children of men); 31  that they may fear thee and walk in thy ways all the days that they live in the land which thou gavest to our fathers. 32  "Likewise when a foreigner, who is not of thy people Israel, comes from a far country for the sake of thy great name, and thy mighty hand, and thy outstretched arm, when he comes and prays toward this house, 33  hear thou from heaven thy dwelling place, and do according to all for which the foreigner calls to thee; in order that all the peoples of the earth may know thy name and fear thee, as do thy people Israel, and that they may know that this house which I have built is called by thy name. 34  "If thy people go out to battle against their enemies, by whatever way thou shalt send them, and they pray to thee toward this city which thou hast chosen and the house which I have built for thy name, 35  then hear thou from heaven their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause. 36  "If they sin against thee--for there is no man who does not sin--and thou art angry with them, and dost give them to an enemy, so that they are carried away captive to a land far or near; 37  yet if they lay it to heart in the land to which they have been carried captive, and repent, and make supplication to thee in the land of their captivity, saying, 'We have sinned, and have acted perversely and wickedly'; 38  if they repent with all their mind and with all their heart in the land of their captivity, to which they were carried captive, and pray toward their land, which thou gavest to their fathers, the city which thou hast chosen, and the house which I have built for thy name, 39  then hear thou from heaven thy dwelling place their prayer and their supplications, and maintain their cause and forgive thy people who have sinned against thee. 40  Now, O my God, let thy eyes be open and thy ears attentive to a prayer of this place. 41  "And now arise, O Lord God, and go to thy resting place, thou and the ark of thy might. Let thy priests, O Lord God, be clothed with salvation, and let thy saints rejoice in thy goodness. 42  O Lord God, do not turn away the face of thy anointed one! Remember thy steadfast love for David thy servant."

7 1  When Solomon had ended his prayer, fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices, and the glory of the Lord filled the temple. 2  And the priests could not enter the house of the Lord, because the glory of the Lord filled the Lord's house. 3  When all the children of Israel saw the fire come down and the glory of the Lord upon the temple, they bowed down with their faces to the earth on the pavement, and worshiped and gave thanks to the Lord, saying, "For he is good, for his steadfast love endures for ever." 4  Then the king and all the people offered sacrifice before the Lord. 5  King Solomon offered as a sacrifice twenty-two thousand oxen and a hundred and twenty thousand sheep. So the king and all the people dedicated the house of God. 6  The priests stood at their posts; the Levites also, with the instruments for music to the Lord which King David had made for giving thanks to the Lord--for his steadfast love endures for ever--whenever David offered praises by their ministry; opposite them the priests sounded trumpets; and all Israel stood. 7  And Solomon consecrated the middle of the court that was before the house of the Lord; for there he offered the burnt offering and the fat of the peace offerings, because the bronze altar Solomon had made could not hold the burnt offering and the cereal offering and the fat. 8  At that time Solomon held the feast for seven days, and all Israel with him, a very great congregation, from the entrance of Hamath to the Brook of Egypt. 9  And on the eighth day they held a solemn assembly; for they had kept the dedication of the altar seven days and the feast seven days. 10  On the twenty-third day of the seventh month he sent the people away to their homes, joyful and glad of heart for the goodness that the Lord had shown to David and to Solomon and to Israel his people.

The LORD's Covenant with Solomon

11  Thus Solomon finished the house of the Lord and the king's house; all that Solomon had planned to do in the house of the Lord and in his own house he successfully accomplished.

12  Then the Lord appeared to Solomon in the night and said to him: "I have heard your prayer, and have chosen this place for myself as a house of sacrifice. 13  When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command the locust to devour the land, or send pestilence among my people, 14  if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 15  Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayer that is made in this place. 16  For now I have chosen and consecrated this house that my name may be there for ever; my eyes and my heart will be there for all time. 17  And as for you, if you walk before me, as David your father walked, doing according to all that I have commanded you and keeping my statutes and my ordinances, 18  then I will establish your royal throne, as I covenanted with David your father, saying, 'There shall not fail you a man to rule Israel.' 19  "But if you turn aside and forsake my statutes and my commandments which I have set before you, and go and serve other gods and worship them, 20  then I will pluck you up from the land which I have given you; and this house, which I have consecrated for my name, I will cast out of my sight, and will make it a proverb and a byword among all peoples. 21  And at this house, which is exalted, every one passing by will be astonished, and say, 'Why has the Lord done thus to this land and to this house?" 22  Then they will say, 'Because they forsook the Lord the God of their fathers who brought them out of the land of Egypt, and laid hold on other gods, and worshiped them and served them; therefore he has brought all this evil upon them'"

Solomon's Further Activities

8 1  At the end of twenty years, in which Solomon had built the house of the Lord and his own house, 2  Solomon rebuilt the cities which Huram had given to him, and settled the people of Israel in them. 3  And Solomon went to Ha'math-zo'bah, and took it. 4  He built Tadmor in the wilderness and all the store-cities which he built in Hamath. 5  He also built Upper Beth-hor'on and Lower Beth-hor'on, fortified cities with walls, gates, and bars, 6  and Ba'alath, and all the store-cities that Solomon had, and all the cities for his chariots, and the cities for his horsemen, and whatever Solomon desired to build in Jerusalem, in Lebanon, and in all the land of his dominion. 7  All the people who were left of the Hittites, the Amorites, the Per'izzites, the Hivites, and the Jeb'usites, who were not of Israel, 8  from their descendants who were left after them in the land, whom the people of Israel had not destroyed--these Solomon made a forced levy and so they are to this day. 9  But of the people of Israel Solomon made no slaves for his work; they were soldiers, and his officers, the commanders of his chariots, and his horsemen. 10  And these were the chief officers of King Solomon, two hundred and fifty, who exercised authority over the people. 11  Solomon brought Pharaoh's daughter up from the city of David to the house which he had built for her, for he said, "My wife shall not live in the house of David king of Israel, for the places to which the ark of the Lord has come are holy."

12  Then Solomon offered up burnt offerings to the Lord upon the altar of the Lord which he had built before the vestibule, 13  as the duty of each day required, offering according to the commandment of Moses for the sabbaths, the new moons, and the three annual feasts--the feast of unleavened bread, the feast of weeks, and the feast of tabernacles. 14  According to the ordinance of David his father, he appointed the divisions of the priests for their service, and the Levites for their offices of praise and ministry before the priests as the duty of each day required, and the gatekeepers in their divisions for the several gates; for so David the man of God had commanded. 15  And they did not turn aside from what the king had commanded the priests and Levites concerning any matter and concerning the treasuries. 16  Thus was accomplished all the work of Solomon from the day the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid until it was finished. So the house of the Lord was completed. 17  Then Solomon went to E'zion-ge'ber and Eloth on the shore of the sea, in the land of Edom. 18  And Huram sent him by his servants ships and servants familiar with the sea, and they went to Ophir together with the servants of Solomon, and fetched from there four hundred and fifty talents of gold and brought it to King Solomon.

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