Monday, April 29, 2013

FIRST THINGS FIRST

Suggested Reading: 1 Kings 7

Click scripture link to read online or HERE to listen online (then click the symbol of the audio speaker above the scripture portion).

 

This is a view that many Bible characters would have seen as they looked east toward the Mount of Olives from the southern wall of the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. On the top left in the wall you can vaguely see the blocked up Triple Gate that was one of the entrances to the Temple.

GOOGLE MAPS – To see where the photo was taken, click HERE.

 

Key Verse: 1 Kings 7:51

So all the work that King Solomon had done for the house of the Lord was finished; and Solomon brought in the things which his father David had dedicated: the silver and the gold and the furnishings. He put them in the treasuries of the house of the Lord.

At this time of King Solomon’s life, God was in His rightful place…FIRST PLACE! Only one wife is mentioned, the daughter of the ruler of Egypt. Solomon’s full attention was on the rule of his kingdom and on the task of building God’s Temple (here is a link to a good illustration of how the Temple may have looked). This building project was a job left for Solomon by his father, David. Later in his life, Solomon married many other wives, built temples to their gods, and his attention was not on the Lord God of Israel. It’s sad but true.
Jesus said, “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). May this be the case throughout all the periods of our lives, not just for the first few years. As we read in today’s reading about the intricate details of the construction projects, let us recognize that God did indeed add “all these things” to Solomon and the Kingdom of Israel. As we will see, the Kingdom of God became diminished and the kingdom of Solomon increased. The end result will not be glorious. The country will be torn apart. Eventually the Temple will be destroyed and all the beautiful vessels in the Temple taken by a foreign invader. However, in the intervening period of God’s blessing, we can also be blessed as we read ahead.

PRAYER FOR TODAY:

Lord God, grant me even more wisdom than You gave Solomon. I ask for enough wisdom to last me an entire lifetime, not for just the first few years. I need You 24/7! In the Name of another descendant of King David, Jesus, my Saviour and Lord, Amen!

100 PERSONAL WORDS:

For some reason I’m thinking of building projects in which I have been involved in a leadership role. The first was a new roof on a little church building in Castleton, Ontario. The next was a new church building in Deep River, Ontario. Then there was the construction of another church building in Sudbury. All these projects were built under budget and paid for in short order. But then 25 years later came the necessity of building a new 143,000 square foot studio and office building for Crossroads Christian Communications Inc. I was confident that we could once again build for less than the estimated costs, but the project went considerably over cost. It took lots and lots of fervent prayer, much sacrificial giving, and the daily pressures of also paying regular operating costs in order to prevail. There was no overlay of gold, just drywall, brick, and the most reasonable materials available. Nevertheless, the former Chairman of Canada’s Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission, Keith Spicer, did pronounce the Crossroads Centre in Burlington the finest TV production facility in Canada. Every day, we sought to “seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness.” And through the amazing investment of God’s people in the purchase of mortgage certificates and in giving so very generously, the charity, Crossroads, became free of debt in ten years. It may seem foolish to draw any comparison to the Temple of Solomon, but it seems to me the same principles are involved, i.e. putting God first!

Yours for God’s blessing on the new, God-called leadership at Crossroads. Greater challenges than ever face our Board, our CEO Don Simmonds, our Spiritual Director, Ron Mainse and the entire team. Exciting opportunities are on the horizon as they follow God’s lead with their fresh vision: “To communicate a relevant message of Christian faith and values to people of all ages, at all stages of their faith journey, using multiple forms of media communications and humanitarian efforts, thereby extending our reach to the world.”

David

P.S. I came across just now a lovely song by a member of the Islington Baptist Church, Toronto (click here and you’ll know why I am blessed by the song).

 

17 thoughts on “Monday, April 29, 2013

  1. Thanks for your message, today, David. It’s meaningful to look back at all your building projects which served the Lord and see how they grew in size because of your dedication and faith. I especially liked the illustration of King Solomon’s Temple. It is interesting for us to look at our own lives, not necessarily in relation to buildings, but whatever work we have done in service for the Lord, and see how He has used us to help His ministry grow.

    Let us keep our eyes on Jesus and be strengthened by Him. “Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you.” Matthew 6:33.

    To be uplifted in the early morning, to sing your glorious praise,
    Let us cast out any fears or sorrows, and put God first, for this day.
    Beverlee Kay, 2013

    Blessings, fellow saints!

  2. Like Solomon, many an individual has tried his best to ‘go it alone’ only to bring upon great disaster; without God in the plans, we will always come up insufficient. When I think of how Solomon tried to do the right thing by fulfilling the promise of building a temple, by meditating upon the Lord his God as his father David had before him, by asking for wisdom of God instead of wealth. All these things prove that God was the focus of Solomon’s life, and yet as we will soon see, he took his focus off of the Lord and unto himself and disaster soon followed. The Bible says that God is a jealous God. He wants our undivided attention; He wants us for Himself. The promise of the old covenant was that He would be their God and that the Hebrew community would be His people. Unfortunately this was repeatedly forgotten and needed to be repeatedly re-learned, generation after generation. Isn’t this human nature though? How often have we strayed from God through word, thought or deed? The promised Holy Spirit is there ready to guide us into the ways of righteousness, Jesus is always with us ready to forgive. We only need to remember that Jesus is sufficient in all matters, even when we come up short in life. Have a blessed day everyone!

  3. We are reminded by David’s message, today, and the incredible work he has accomplished throughout his life serving the Lord, that, indeed, “with God, all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26

    “Each of three boys gave a definition of faith which is an illustration of the tenacity of faith. The first boy said, “It is taking hold of Christ”; the second, “:Keeping hold”; and the third, “Not letting go.” Streams in the Desert, Cowman, April 29, p. 143.

    Let our faith in God grow stronger, by taking hold of Christ, keeping hold of Him, and never letting go. Amen, amen, and amen!

  4. There seems to be a connection between immeasurable wealth, power and fame and an equal pull against following the paths of Christian living. It all starts off well and as the self increases, so does temptation and less dependence upon God. Of course, not in all cases but in many. Is it human nature, ego, power, control, leadership? Seeking first the Kingdom and His righteousness is indeed an action and not simply a concept. If not a priority in our daily living, we have loss of direction and yield instead to impulse. I pray for His strength and guidance in all our ways! Have a great day to all!

    • I agree with your line of reasoning, David. Personally, I think when ego links with human will, it causes the selfish parts of our personalities to take over; leading us into temptation, away from the path of righteousness, and further resisting God’s plan.

  5. I was surprised to see that your prayer, David M., asked for more wisdom than Solomon. I would loveto have that wisdom also but it seemed to me that 1 Kings 3: 12 indicated that Solomon was the only one to receive THAT great amount of wisdom at any time. I was disappointed but I do ask for more wisdom. I had to read today’s Bible reading in the modern day version. I don’t understand all the measurements in The King James!

  6. The value of any individual lies not in him, but receives value by union with Christ. We are saved by grace, for in our flesh dwells no good thing. We are through and through derived beings, living not of ourselves but from Christ. Man was created for this.

  7. Thank you once again David for your faithfulness to getting out our daily blog.
    Amen to all of the comments this morning.

    Remembering Diane’s dad as he has another brain scan today.

    More of Jesus and less of me.

  8. Thank you David for putting on the beautiful worship this morning, what a lovely voice that lady has and truly worshipful! l came into agreement with your prayer as l really need help in the wisdom area, l’ve made so many foolish mistakes and mis-calculations although God has pulled me out each time in one way or another, but it would be better if l don’t mess up in the first place! Like you l only want to be a blessingto our Abba Father and do the best with what he has gifted me with .

  9. Many, many years ago my husband did a project with the junior boys Sunday School class at our church. They built a miniature Solomon’s Temple out of wood. They had a great time doing this project.

    I loved the worship song this morning. My granddaughter who is 2 1/2 was in the other room and she heard the music and came out and I sang along and she loved it. Our little ones are so precious, they just soak everything up. I teach the 2 & 3 year old kids church and they learn so quickly and sing the songs. It’s awesome and it’s a blessing.

    Have a great day fellow bloggers and God bless!!! I think we are going to get some rain today. Yesterday was glorious!!!!!

  10. I also thank you for including the link to the beautiful worship song. It caused me to drop to my knees, raise my hands in praise, and to sing along.

  11. I am amazed by the fact that the history of the Christian church is following the history of the nation of Israel. The Christian church was once one, like Israel, but like in the time of Solomon, the leaders of the church became corrupt and the church was divided, into the Catholic and Protestant tradition, much like Israel was divided into the Southern and Northern Kingdom after Solomon. And then the Israel tribes became scattered throughout the world, much like Christians became scattered through many denominations. Yet, just like when the nation Israel was reborn and became a nation again after being dead for so long, Christians can be born again in Christ and be One again in Him, despite their faith tradition.
    I just find the Old Testament so cool- it is not just Jewish history, but embedded in it is our future. Praise God.

  12. Thank you for your message David that song was one of the first songs I learned
    to sing at church camp awhile ago. I only knew the first verse it is very lovely and
    what we need. Have a wonderful day everyone
    Lianne Hogg

  13. I thank you once again David .M. your very interesting input [personnel]
    I mean it makes the blog and the scipture come to an interesting concultion.
    God blessyou all yuo bloggers love all your comments.May you all have a
    blessed and wonderful day…R…

  14. Dear David and fellow bloggers
    What a breathtaking description of the Temple of the Lord built by Solomon . So much beauty that the Lord provided then as they followed every instruction of God’s intricate precision . It shows us again today how crucial it is for all of us to put God First in every plan or desire in our life .Jesus must be first.
    Thank you David M for this beautiful worship song .Looking forward to becoming a grandmother and singing away with my grand children to our Heavenly Father Amen
    Have a blessed day.

  15. This blog helps us to put you first by reading God’s Word everyday. Loved the music today and I played more of the songs featured on that site. Thanks David for making it possible and inspiring one to worship in the morning. Love all the comments fellow bloggers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *