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1 Chronicles 22:2-19 – The Designated Temple Builder: Solomon

Summary

David commissions Solomon as the divinely chosen temple builder.

Analysis

The temple site has been designated (chapter 21), the land has been consolidated and financing has been arranged (chapters 18-20), God's permission has been obtained (chapter 17), and the ark stands in readiness in the Holy City (chapters 13-16). Ever since God slew Saul and turned the kingdom over to David (10:14), David's energies have been leading to this moment. All that remains is the commissioning of the divinely chosen temple builder (Solomon), because David cannot be the builder--much like Moses, who was denied entrance into the promised land. In fact, the transition from David to Solomon in Chronicles has been closely modeled on that from Moses to Joshua, as the following additional parallels show:

  • God's presence (Deuteronomy 31:6, 8, 23; 1 Chronicles 22:11, 16)
  • description of the task (Deuteronomy 31:7; 1 Chronicles 22:11)
  • the commissioning that takes place both in private (Deuteronomy 31:23; 1 Chronicles 22:6) as well as before all the people (Deuteronomy 31:7; 1 Chronicles 28:8)
  • the similar words of encouragement, especially when the parallel in Joshua 1:2-9 is taken into consideration.

The reason for denying David the role of temple builder finally appears in 1 Chronicles 22:8: David has "shed much blood." The earlier history blamed David's preoccupation with war as the reason; he just did not have the time (1 Kings 5:3-4)! In Chronicles the bloodshed associated with those wars is the problem, but in a ritual not a moral sense, since David fought them at God's command. David is designated "warrior" (22:8; see also 28:3). In contrast, it is Solomon ("peaceful" in Hebrew) who will fulfill God's promise of a son who would build the temple (17:11-14). David thus commissions his son, encouraging him to be faithful in the task.

1 Chronicles 22:2-19

David Prepares to Build the Temple

2 David gave orders to gather together the aliens who were residing in the land of Israel, and he set stonecutters to prepare dressed stones for building the house of God. 3David also provided great stores of iron for nails for the doors of the gates and for clamps, as well as bronze in quantities beyond weighing, 4and cedar logs without number—for the Sidonians and Tyrians brought great quantities of cedar to David. 5For David said, ‘My son Solomon is young and inexperienced, and the house that is to be built for the Lord must be exceedingly magnificent, famous and glorified throughout all lands; I will therefore make preparation for it.’ So David provided materials in great quantity before his death.

David’s Charge to Solomon and the Leaders

6 Then he called for his son Solomon and charged him to build a house for the Lord, the God of Israel. 7David said to Solomon, ‘My son, I had planned to build a house to the name of the Lord my God. 8But the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “You have shed much blood and have waged great wars; you shall not build a house to my name, because you have shed so much blood in my sight on the earth. 9See, a son shall be born to you; he shall be a man of peace. I will give him peace from all his enemies on every side; for his name shall be Solomon,* and I will give peace* and quiet to Israel in his days. 10He shall build a house for my name. He shall be a son to me, and I will be a father to him, and I will establish his royal throne in Israel for ever.” 11Now, my son, the Lord be with you, so that you may succeed in building the house of the Lord your God, as he has spoken concerning you. 12Only, may the Lord grant you discretion and understanding, so that when he gives you charge over Israel you may keep the law of the Lord your God. 13Then you will prosper if you are careful to observe the statutes and the ordinances that the Lord commanded Moses for Israel. Be strong and of good courage. Do not be afraid or dismayed. 14With great pains I have provided for the house of the Lord one hundred thousand talents of gold, one million talents of silver, and bronze and iron beyond weighing, for there is so much of it; timber and stone too I have provided. To these you must add more. 15You have an abundance of workers: stonecutters, masons, carpenters, and all kinds of artisans without number, skilled in working 16gold, silver, bronze, and iron. Now begin the work, and the Lord be with you.’

17 David also commanded all the leaders of Israel to help his son Solomon, saying, 18‘Is not the Lord your God with you? Has he not given you peace on every side? For he has delivered the inhabitants of the land into my hand; and the land is subdued before the Lord and his people. 19Now set your mind and heart to seek the Lord your God. Go and build the sanctuary of the Lord God so that the ark of the covenant of the Lord and the holy vessels of God may be brought into a house built for the name of the Lord.’

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v 2.2.7
10 February 2011

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