E100-38: 1 Kings 8:1 – 9:9: Solomon and the temple

Photo from The Russian Institute of Radionavigation and Time, http://www.rirt.ru/

Solomon’s prayer understands that Yahweh is a different God, the gods (like Ba’al and his crowd) lived in the sky – and lanced thunderbolts down on people they disliked – heaven/sky was like the earth only bigger and better.

When Yuri Gagarin became the first human in space Russian leader Nikita Khrushchev said “Gagarin flew into space, but didn’t see any God there“. Solomon’s prayer sees the stupidity of Krushchev – how could the creator of universes be see from a measly 302Kms from earth? But even this is not the real difference. This Yahweh is a God who’s name means “being with you” cf. E100-17: Exodus 3-4: Getting the holy between your toes! Yahweh wants a relationship, loves us, and is therefore a jealous God
cf. E100-21: Exodus 19:1 – 20:21: The Ten Commandments.

The story of Israel’s ancestor, Jacob, was bookmarked by two nighttime meetings with God, the second time he was given the name “Israel”. Solomon’s story also has two nighttime meetings with God, in the first he got his wish, and chose wisdom, in this reading after dedicating the temple in a dream God warns Solomon that all his promises to the chosen people are conditional on Israel’s obedience. Therefore they provisional and as we will see are only really fulfilled in Jesus.