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Chinese11/29/2005English
經文:列王紀上五至六章
鑰節:「論到你所建的這殿,你若遵行我的律例,謹守我的典章,遵從我的一切誡命,我必向你應驗我所應許你父親大衛的話。我必住在以色列人中間,並不丟棄我民以色列。」(6:12~13)
提要

        正如以色列人在曠野時,上帝有條件的應許與他們同在、住在會幕中(出25:8),現在上帝也同樣的應許所羅門,如果以色列人順服上帝,上帝的同在就會彰顯在會幕中,使會幕真正成為上帝的殿,以色列人也會真正成為上帝的百姓。上帝也提醒所羅門,如果所羅門順服祂,祂就會實現對大衛的應許,使所羅門成為建殿的人(撒下7:12~13)。

        所羅門深受鼓勵,也熱心的要為上帝建造敬拜的殿。建殿的時機已成熟,因為上帝使所羅門「四圍平安」(5:4)。所羅門捎口信給推羅王希蘭,向他解釋他的父親大衛「因四圍的爭戰」(5:3)故不能建殿。不過大衛事先已作了許多預備工作,並且毫無疑問的也己預留了建殿的材料。希蘭是大衛的老友,他一定知道大衛未完成的心願。希蘭稱頌上帝賜給大衛一個有智慧的兒子,也很樂意提供所羅門要求的援助。如此,二人便建立了商務上的關係,並締結和平盟約(5:12)。

        所羅門在以色列人中召募苦力,使他們輪番上黎巴嫩作工。他也用許多迦南奴隸來扛抬、砍石(5:15;代下2:17~18)。聖殿的基本藍圖類似上帝所指定的會幕,但前者更精緻,而且面積更大。所羅門建的聖殿的約廿八公尺長,九公尺寬,十三公尺高。此外,殿外的長廊更增加了九公尺的長度。

        聖殿的美觀和雄偉表達了所羅門對上帝的愛和尊敬。如果換算成今天的貨幣,那座聖殿造價約十億美金。不過,聖殿不只是一座供人瞻仰、讚嘆的殿宇,它是一個敬拜上帝的地方以及上帝同在的象徵。它也要作為以色列國的中心樞紐,使以色列人統一於對真神上帝的敬拜。

        雖然建造聖殿不是上帝的主意,但上帝仍然尊重大衛的心願,並容許讓所羅門來實現這個計畫。異教徒相信他們的神祇喜歡他們蓋造廟宇讓神祇居住。但以色列的真神對富麗堂皇的建築物一點也不感興趣。祂甘於居住在樸實無華的帳幕堙C上帝所求於祂子民的,從過去到現都一樣就在祂向所羅門所說的話堙]6:12)。上帝要我們順服祂,聖經說得很清楚:「聽命勝於獻祭」(撒上15:22)。

禱告

        主啊,從今天的經文堙A我們看到推羅王希蘭為您賜給大衛一個有智慧的兒子而喜樂。我們祈求您祝福我們周圍的家庭,當我們看到別人成功時,我們也因您的作為而喜樂。奉主耶穌聖名,阿們!

English

Scriptures:Read 1 King 5 &6
Key Verse:"Concerning this temple which you are building, if you walk in My statutes, execute My judgments, keep My commandments and walk in them, then I will perform My word with you, which I spoke to your father David. And I will dwell among the children of Israel, and will not forsake My people Israel."(1 Kings 6:12, 13)
Overview

        Just as the Lord had made the conditional promise of being with the children of Israel and dwelling in the Tabernacle while they were in the wilderness (Exodus 25:8), so now He makes the same promise to Solomon. If Israel lives in obedience to Him, His presence would be manifest in the Temple; it would truly be the House of God and they would truly be His people. God also reminded Solomon of the condition that if he obeyed Him, He would fulfill His promise to David that Solomon would build the Temple (2 Samuel 7:12, 13).

        Solomon was encouraged and enthusiastic to honour God by building Him a place of worship. The time was now ripe for this tremendous task to be done, because Solomon had "rest on every side" (5:4; 4:24). As he explained in his message to Hiram, king of Tyre, his father David could not build it "because of the wars... on every side" (5:3). David, however, had done much preparation in advance and had no doubt set aside many materials for it. Hiram was David's old friend and would have been well aware of his unfulfilled intention of building a house for the Lord (2 Samuel 5:11; 7:2). Hiram blessed the Lord for giving a wise son to David, and he was glad to provide all the help required; thus they entered into a business relationship and peace treaty (5:12).

        He drafted Israelite labourers on a rotating basis, just as Samuel had warned would happen if they had a king (1 Samuel 8:16). He also used many Canaanite slaves to carry loads and cut stones (5:15; 2 Chronicles 2:17-18). The basic plan of the Temple was similar to that of the God-ordained Tabernacle, but it was much more elaborate and double the size (cf. Exodus 26:16, 18). It was about twenty-eight meters long, nine meters wide, and thirteen meters high. In addition, there was a porch which gave it an additional nine meters in length.

        The beauty and greatness of the Temple were expressions of Solomon's love and honour to God. If we were to convert its cost into modern terms, it would have cost billions of dollars to build. However, it was to be more than just a place to gaze upon and marvel; it was primarily a place of worship to God and a symbol of His presence. It was also intended to be a centralized place to help unify Israel in the true worship of God.

        Although the Temple was not God's idea, as had been the Tabernacle, He nonetheless honoured David's wish and allowed it to be constructed by Solomon. The heathen believed their gods desired them to build and maintain their temples, and that was their main purpose in life. The true God of Israel, however, was not interested in an elaborate building. He was content to have His habitation in a humble tent. What God desired of His people, then as well as now, was the words He spoke to Solomon (see key verse, 6:12). God required obedience to Him, for as the Bible makes clear, "to obey is better than sacrifice" (1 Samuel 15:22).

Prayer

        Lord, we read in today's portion how Hiram, King of Tyre, rejoiced over the fact that You had given a wise Son to David. We pray Your blessing upon the families around us, and we rejoice when others succeed.


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