Read: 1 Kings 6 – 7:12
And the temple, when it was being built, was built with stone finished at the quarry, so that no hammer or chisel or any iron tool was heard in the temple while it was being built. 1 Kings 6:7
The temple was finally being built. David had dreamed of it and Solomon was making it happen. The process was incredible and specific to detail. It was modeled after the tabernacle that traveled with the Israelites and Moses in the desert.
As I read the details and thought about the process I couldn’t help to think about the luxury and convenience of pictures and video. How I would love to actually see the temple, to see the panels of cedar and pine, the 15 foot cherubim and the golden floors!
Even if it was still standing today, if it was reverenced as much as it was when it was built, we may still not have pictures or videos of the inside of the temple. The temple was not made to impress us by its beauty. It was made for God to enjoy and only a very select few would ever be allowed to go in the inner most parts.
The temple was so reverenced that in building it, they kept the construction quiet. Having gone through minor construction in my own house (while trying to still have napping children) this idea seems impossible to me.
But it says it right here in verse 7:
7 And the temple, when it was being built, was built with stone finished at the quarry, so that no hammer or chisel or any iron tool was heard in the temple while it was being built.
I stopped and took pause at this statement. The commentaries have wonderful things to say about this verse.
One Bible commentary pointed out that fashioning the stones at the quarry helped with ease of transport and the speed of construction, but it most likely had more to do with an instinctive reverence in the construction of such a holy building.
Another one pointed to how silence is such an important part of our faith and relationship with God. That as we are quiet, the metaphorical stones of God’s temple, the church, we grow in our spiritual lives. Through silence and reflection, God grows us and changes us and forms us into the “living stones” of his holy temple.
I then think back to my instinctive wish for video and pictures to help me understand and visualize the temple. We are everything but silent in this generation. This highly visualized, highly commercialized, fast paced world we live in pulls us from this silence that our souls need to grow. Me, be quiet? On a regular basis? With my life? It seems as impossible as building a temple without striking a hammer!
Psalm 46:10 says “Be still, and know that I am God.
Ahh, I like the idea. It is such an appealing invitation.
A silent reverence… a quieting of ourselves before our maker.
Do we make the time?
Obviously, you take time to read these devotionals and hopefully read the scriptures that coincide.
But do we allow ourselves to be quiet before the Lord,
not intaking any information,
not praying over our lists of worries,
Not thinking of all we need to get done?
Take God up on his invitation to be still.
Without guilt, take some time today to just be quiet…
No music, no tv, no phone … just quiet.
See how He guides you in that silence.
Be still, and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10.
Father, thank you that you aren’t a slave driver. Thank you that you want rest and renewal and growth for my soul. Allow me to be still in you today. In Jesus’ name, Amen.