God deals plainly with men and sets before them blessing or cursing.
God never fails to perform His part of a covenant and if we improve the grace He is willing to give,
He will confirm us to the end.
I Kings 1
1 And it came to pass, when Solomon had finished the building of the house of the LORD, and the king’s house, and all Solomon’s desire which he was pleased to do,
2 That the LORD appeared to Solomon the second time, as he had appeared unto him at Gibeon.
3 And the LORD said unto him, I have heard thy prayer and thy supplication, that thou hast made before me: I have hallowed this house, which thou hast built, to put my name there for ever; and mine eyes and mine heart shall be there perpetually.
4 And if thou wilt walk before me, as David thy father walked, in integrity of heart, and in uprightness, to do according to all that I have commanded thee, and wilt keep my statutes and my judgments:
5 Then I will establish the throne of thy kingdom upon Israel for ever, as I promised to David thy father, saying, There shall not fail thee a man upon the throne of Israel.
6 But if ye shall at all turn from following me, ye or your children, and will not keep my commandments and my statutes which I have set before you, but go and serve other gods, and worship them:
7 Then will I cut off Israel out of the land which I have given them; and this house, which I have hallowed for my name, will I cast out of my sight; and Israel shall be a proverb and a byword among all people:
8 And at this house, which is high, every one that passeth by it shall be astonished, and shall hiss; and they shall say, Why hath the LORD done thus unto this land, and to this house?
9 And they shall answer, Because they forsook the LORD their God, who brought forth their fathers out of the land of Egypt, and have taken hold upon other gods, and have worshipped them, and served them: therefore hath the LORD brought upon them all this evil.
10 ¶ And it came to pass at the end of twenty years, when Solomon had built the two houses, the house of the LORD, and the king’s house,
11 (Now Hiram the king of Tyre had furnished Solomon with cedar trees and fir trees, and with gold, according to all his desire,) that then king Solomon gave Hiram twenty cities in the land of Galilee.
12 And Hiram came out from Tyre to see the cities which Solomon had given him; and they pleased him not.
13 And he said, What cities are these which thou hast given me, my brother? And he called them the land of Cabul unto this day.
14 And Hiram sent to the king sixscore talents of gold.
15 ¶ And this is the reason of the levy which king Solomon raised; for to build the house of the LORD, and his own house, and Millo, and the wall of Jerusalem, and Hazor, and Megiddo, and Gezer.
16 For Pharaoh king of Egypt had gone up, and taken Gezer, and burnt it with fire, and slain the Canaanites that dwelt in the city, and given it for a present unto his daughter, Solomon’s wife.
17 And Solomon built Gezer, and Beth-horon the nether,
18 And Baalath, and Tadmor in the wilderness, in the land,
19 And all the cities of store that Solomon had, and cities for his chariots, and cities for his horsemen, and that which Solomon desired to build in Jerusalem, and in Lebanon, and in all the land of his dominion.
20 And all the people that were left of the Amorites, Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites, which were not of the children of Israel,
21 Their children that were left after them in the land, whom the children of Israel also were not able utterly to destroy, upon those did Solomon levy a tribute of bondservice unto this day.
22 But of the children of Israel did Solomon make no bondmen: but they were men of war, and his servants, and his princes, and his captains, and rulers of his chariots, and his horsemen.
23 These were the chief of the officers that were over Solomon’s work, five hundred and fifty, which bare rule over the people that wrought in the work.
24 ¶ But Pharaoh’s daughter came up out of the city of David unto her house which Solomon had built for her: then did he build Millo.
25 ¶ And three times in a year did Solomon offer burnt offerings and peace offerings upon the altar which he built unto the LORD, and he burnt incense upon the altar that was before the LORD. So he finished the house.
26 ¶ And king Solomon made a navy of ships in Ezion-geber, which is beside Eloth, on the shore of the Red sea, in the land of Edom.
27 And Hiram sent in the navy his servants, shipmen that had knowledge of the sea, with the servants of Solomon.
28 And they came to Ophir, and fetched from thence gold, four hundred and twenty talents, and brought it to king Solomon.
I Kings – J. Vernon McGee
1 Kings 9:1-14 – A Searching Word to the Wise
God’s second revelation of Himself to Solomon had a double object. In the first place, it assured the king that his prayer was heard and that the new building was accepted. It is always thus. When we yield ourselves to God, desiring to be His alone, He enters on possession, hallowing, infilling, and guaranteeing our security. In the second place, God laid down the conditions on which both king and people might be assured of permanent prosperity. We must be whole-hearted, not in the miles but in the steps of our daily walk. Obedience to the inner voice is essential. The child of God distinguishes his Father’s voice from every other sound and call, because it is definite and unvarying.
It was a pity that, after such loyal cooperation, Hiram was disappointed with his recompense. Happy are they who, as they work for God, look for no reward from their fellows, because they are the servants of a Master whose generous gifts do not need to be eked out by additions from any other quarter. Do right, because it is right, and not because you are looking for any gift or reward from human hands.
1 Kings 9:3—I have hallowed this house, which thou hast built.
Man builds; God hallows. This cooperation between man and God pervades all life. Man performs the outward and mechanical; God the inward and spiritual. Paul plants, Apollos waters; but God gives the increase. We elaborate our sermons and addresses, building them up with careful, eager thought; but God must work in and through them for His own glory in the salvation and upbuilding of souls. We must be careful to do our part with reverence and godly fear, remembering that God must work in realms we cannot touch, and to issues we cannot reach, before our poor exertions can avail.
May we not apply this especially to the education of a child’s life? Many who read these lines are engaged in building structures which will outlive the Pyramids. The body is only the scaffolding, behind and through which the building of the soul is being upreared. The materials with which we build may be the gold, silver, and precious stones, of our example, precept, careful watching, and discipline; but God must come in to hallow. Our strenuous endeavor must be supplemented by the incoming of the Holy Spirit.
God hallows by His indwelling. Holiness is the result of His putting His Name into a place, a day, a human soul; for His Name is His nature, Himself. Each day may be a building, reared between sunrise and sunset, with our activities; but it were vain to hope to realize our ideal unless the structure become a temple filled with God. Build what you will; but never be satisfied unless God sets His eyes and heart upon your life, hallowing and sanctifying each day and act to Himself.
1 Kings 9:15-28 – Prosperity and Wealth
Solomon was a great builder and employed vast numbers of Canaanites, the old inhabitants of the land, as forced laborers. They performed the drudgery, while the Israelites filled the more honorable and lucrative posts. See Isaiah 60:10. There are Amorites and Perizzites in our lives. Let us not be mastered by them, but compel them to subserve our own growth in grace.
Millo was the key to the fortifications of Jerusalem; Hazor and Megiddo, Baalath and Tadmor guarded the northern frontier. On the extreme south, the navies visited distant realms, and returned laden with gold. Such were Israel’s midsummer days. But as, in the latter days of summer, there is the faint odor of decay in the air, and we know that the autumn comes apace, so beneath all this splendor and imperial glory, as we turn to the earlier chapters of Ecclesiastes, we learn that decadence was at its heart.