BDBD is SOS 2:1-2

The lady’s self-awareness has been turned about by her lover and friends. She accepts their encouragement. She appreciates their sincere compliments. She values that they see her like two appealing flowers; a rose and a lily.

Sharon is a fertile coastal plain south of Mount Carmel, a valley leading to the Mediterranean Sea. Her lover’s verbal admiration nourishes her as Sharon sustains a rose and a lily.

The king continues the extolling. She is a lily among thorns. His beloved’s glory surpasses other maidens. She is his darling. She is his darling. She is his favorite. She alone is his heart’s desire.

“An anxious heart weighs a man down, but a kind word cheers him up.” (Provers 12:25) “But you would be fed with the finest of wheat; with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.” (Psalm 81:16) “How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” (Psalm 119:103)

A wise husband will be a king to his wife when he builds up her confidence with choice words. A woman, a man’s bride who is always expressing low self-opinions is desiring her bridegroom’s verbal enrichments.

“Treat her like a lady” is a line from The Temptations sonnet. It continues, “Now I’m the kinda guy who don’t believe that chivalry is dead, no, ‘Cause I believe a woman should be treated with the utmost respect.”

BDBD is SOS 1:9-17

The stately king and the alluring damsel exchange exodic adulation for the other. The king, the lover compares the maidan’s allure to an Egyptian mare so curvature elegant that she is given the honor to be tied to the Pharaoh’s chariot (9). All the stallions draw their steady attention to her forming prance.

The Lover starts his praise with her facial balanced grace; her perky cheeks, slender long neck, and dainty ears. She is the feminine charm displaying strings of jewels and earrings studded with gold and silver (10,11).

The mademoiselle reciprocates her attraction to her lover. The perfume between her breasts is like the king resting his head between her breasts (12,13). The aromatic clustered henna blossoms she compares him to excite senses of smell, taste, and sight. She equates him to the desert En Gedi oasis (14).

The Lover twice exclaims his love for his Beloved, his darling (15). She is twice the beauty. He confesses her eyes are like doves; pure brilliant and clear.

The Beloved confesses her lover is handsome and charming (16). Their bed is verdant; under and over the green fullage of the oasis.

The Lover lies with her there under the stiff sturdy cedars and firs. They make a home.

BDBD is SOS 1:5-8

The young Beloved maiden’s thoughts shift from her lover to herself; excitement withers heated emotions. She is humble and perhaps even has low self-esteem. She draws into her unappreciated complexion. She believes that her skin has been blemished by constant over-exposure to the harsh Egyptian sun (5,6).

The unpretentious Bastet’s mother’s sons forced her to work in the family’s vineyards under the radiant sun (5). The hot labor caused neglect of her physical fruit. “My own vineyard I have neglected.” She sees her complexion as a curtain that keeps her from her lover, casting a cool shadow over passion’s heat. (5).

She reigns in fantasy with dignity. She is not the sort of young woman that veils her face in the late evening as they sell their feminine form to any shepherd (7). She is a lady of the day. She asks to visit him where he rests from midday labor.

The couple’s friends ensure that she is the most beautiful of women (8). Her Lover has his attention on her. She should bring her goats to his sheep presenting a valid reason for shared movements.

BDBD is SOS 1:2-4

The Song is comprised of romantic exchanges. A young maiden is identified as the “Beloved”, her heart swooning in passion. She is loved by and in love with the king who is identified as the “Lover”, his heart enthralled with the young maiden. The king loves the young maiden who has captured his soul as he tries but is unable to focus on stately business. The third party in the exchange is called “Friends”. Most are lifelong friends of the Beloved. Some are also lifelong friends of the Lover. They encourage the couple’s blossoming fervor.

The passion-sonnet starts out revealing the hidden thoughts of the young maiden, the Beloved as she sees the king for the first time. Her unfettered impulse is to think of him embracing her, pulling her chest into his, and kissing her on the mouth with many delights (2). She surrenders herself to his desire. His love affects her like delightful wine affects every sense; sight, smell, touch, taste, mind, and heart. She is lifted into pleasant possession. Her breath slows, her pulse strengthens, her focus singular. Love is aroused.

Her ear tickles her heart at the sound of his name (3). His name has the effect of perfume; changing the normal into an exotic fragrance. Her desire is ignited with a spark and consumes all worries and weights. She is light, engaging imagination floating to him. Everything she had heard other maidens giggle and whisper about the king is true. She realized why they too love him.

Inhibition removed, the maiden’s secret thoughts are revealed (4). If the king were to approach her to encamp her and lead her away to his personal chambers, she would hurry with him and submit to his fantasies. She silently begs him, moving her tongue and yet not mouthing her breath, “King, bring me to your chambers.”

Her maiden friends observe her not-so-hidden heart’s dreams and rejoice and delight. They lovingly praise her fascination with the king. They tell her of their excitement for her fresh love for the Lover.

BDBD is SOS 1:1

Song of Songs is also known as Song of Solomon and Song. The title in the Hebrew text is Solomon’s Song of Songs. I will be abbreviating it SOS. The meaning behind the title is either the song is about Solomon, written by Solomon, or both.

Solomon is mentioned several times in the text. Therefore most (including I) believe this long song is about Solomon’s courtship and marriage between King Solomon and his Egyptian wife, the daughter of Pharoah, king of Egypt (1 Kings 3:1-3).

The Song is considered one of the best short romances ever written. Because of this reason, some Christians are afraid to read it let alone study it. Romance and love are two aspects of God’s nature. One would be wise to not ignore it.

Many have noticed the obvious resemblances between the two main participants in the Song and Jesus and the church. Though Jesus and the apostles did not reference this book in the New Testament Jesus referred to his relationship with the church in many of his parables as that of a bridegroom and a groom. Marriage was the most common theme Jesus used to describe his second coming.

One final important note. When studying this book the best use one can obtain from it is to examine and mimic the romantic love shared between the bride and the bridegroom.

BDBD is Psalm 45:9-17

The psalm shifts to the glorious princess on her wedding day. The bride is to forget her people and her father’s house (10). This does not mean that she has the ability to remove memories. Rather, she is to cease to care for nor have loyalty to her father. She is to become loyal to her lord’s house and kingdom (11).

The king is enthralled with his bride (11). “Desire” can replace “enthralled” here. The queen is to honor her husband and lord. “Worship” can replace “honor” here. This is analogous to Ephesians 5:33, “each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.”

Verses 13-15 chronicle the royal grand persecution of the bride-to-be. The princess is stately in her own glory. She is adorned in a gown of interwoven gold (13). The gold brilliantly glistens in the sunlight. She is in her chamber finished preparing herself for the marriage ceremony.

The queen-to-be is led to the king. The pure untouched by men companion attendants and friends follow her in stately form. Joy and gladness pervade them as they arrive at and enter the king’s palace.

The celebration continues after the ceremony. The two join physically. Sons that are sure to be born will continue the dynastic succession (16). The king promises to perpetuate his queen’s memory through all generations. His love is sealed with an eternal promise.

Psalm 45 is more than spiritual poetry penned for the wedding of Solomon and the daughter of Pharoah. Psalm 45 is a prophecy concerning the marriage of Jesus and his church (congregation). When Jesus comes again the procession will be as described in Psalm 45.

BDBD is Psalm 45:1-9

Psalm 45 is a wedding song penned for the matrimony ceremony between King Solomon and Pharoah’s daughter. The author, so filled with the Spirit’s joy was almost giddy in forming the words (1). The psalm is a synonym for the wedding between Jesus and the church.

The King embodies great splendor, majesty, and glory as a mighty and strong warrior (1-5). He rides a strong horse from battle (4). His weapon of choice is his lips “anointed with grace”. He is the embodiment of truth, humility, and righteousness (4). All nations fall at his feet as defeated warriors or worshipping followers (5).

The King’s reign is eternal (6). God has set him above his companions by anointing him with the oil of joy (7).

The King’s continuance exhales myrrh and aloes and cassia (8). Myrrh was used as an anointing oil for kings and embalming bodies. It was placed in clothes to deodorize them. Cassia is a bark related to cinnamon. Aloes are used as part of spiritual and physical cleansing practices.

The glory of the king’s wedding is honored by foreign kings’ daughters in their pleasant beauty of youthful joy and pleasing smiles. The king’s bride is on his right is the finest gold; reflecting his glory. Such is the bride, the envy of all women.

BDBD is 1 Kings 3:1-3

Solomon became king of all Israel. He made an alliance with Pharaoh king of Egypt. Egypt was not part of the promised land. Egyptians were not Canaanites (Deuteronomy 7:1-4). Egyptians had made slaves of the Israelites over a century after Joseph and his brothers’ families moved to Egypt (Exodus 1:8-11). Now, 500 years later Solomon married an Egyptian, just as Joseph had done.

Sealing the alliance between Egypt and Israel culminated in the marriage between Solomon and Pharaoh’s daughter. This marriage resulted in the writing of Psalm 54 and the Song of Solomon.

Was this marriage wise and blessed by God? Some say yes. Others say no. The Bible, though not directly saying that God blessed the marriage does seem to with the writing of Psalm 45 and the Song of Solomon. Jesus often used marriage in parables to describe the relationship between him and the church. Psalm 45 and the Song of Solomon also reflect that relationship. Whether blessed or not God did use it according to his good and wise purpose.

Solomon showed his love for the LORD by walking according to the statutes of his father David. However, he was not infallible. He did not practice religion as prescribed by the LORD in the Pentateuch. He offered sacrifices and burned incense on the high places (3).

I don’t understand Solomon. He seems to be a man of contrast and inconsistency. Then again, I do not understand myself for the same reason. I too am a man of inconsistency. Yet I have faith that God is able to accomplish in me what he has started.

BDBD is 1 Kings 2:36-46

Shimei was a relative of Saul, the first king of Israel. Shimei ridiculed David when David had to leave Jerusalem because of Absolom’s threat. Saul still had followers. So Shimei was a threat to Solomon’s throne. David instructed Solomon to “bring his gray head down to the grave in blood.” (1 Kings 2:8-9) David wanted vengeance but did not carry it out himself. David told Solomon to kill Shimei.

Solomon devised a way to obey his father. He restricted Shimei to live and stay in Jerusalem with the punishment of death if he left. Shimei did leave after 3 years. Solomon had him put to death. Having a king means that death is a part of them maintaining their throne.

The Lord knows the hearts of humans. He knows that in the fallen state anyone and everyone will violate others, even kill to maintain power. That is why he warned Israel that having a king will make their life harder (1 Sam. 8). However, the person who loves God will resist those impulses by obeying and following Jesus’ teaching.

On the night that Jesus was betrayed, he got up from the table, dressed as a servant, and washed his disciple’s feet. Then he said, “Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. “You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.” (Jn 13:12–17)

BDBD is 1 Kings 2:26-35

Solomon was king. In those days a king’s responsibility included establishing and maintaining justice. The king was the highest court of law.

The king’s responsibility also included maintaining and defending the country. They were to establish and organize the fighting men.

The king was not responsible for maintaining the priesthood, for priests were established by birth family, just as the king was established by birth (if the king loved the Lord and served him). The king also did not tell the priests how to offer sacrifices and what to do for that was established in the law of the Lord. However, they could organize the priesthood as David and Solomon did.

David had left two unfinished responsibilities to Solomon. One included the army ranks, and one included the priesthood. Joab has stuck two important men down without David’s knowledge and even against his wishes and intent. David had told Solomon to deal with Joab. Solomon took this event to have Joad put to death.

The Lord had told Eli, the high priest what would happen to his household because he did not deal with his son’s defilement of the priesthood. That would have been around the time of David’s birth. Solomon now banished Eli’s grandson, Abiathar from serving as a high priest.

Solomon used the event concerning Adonijah to enact the Lord’s word. The Lord’s timing of justice is not often as I would like. Justice often takes a long time. Perhaps because God wants to give time to the person to repent. Perhaps there is another reason. Whatever the reason, I am keenly aware that the Lord is also slow to be angry with me and his justice towards me is merciful. The Lord is full of grace and mercy to me just as he is to everyone.

BDBD is 1 Kings 2:13-25

This passage is also unique to Kings. It is a continuation of the account of Adonijah, the fourth son of David and the oldest alive at the time Solomon was anointed king. Chapter 1 covers his attempt to gain the throne when David was well advanced in years. These verses cover another attempt Adonijah made to become king.

David had no sooner passed away when Adonijah hatched his plan to gain power through marriage. Adonijah had convinced himself of the gross exaggeration that he was indeed the king of Israel and all of Israel looked to him as their king (15). He seems to acknowledge and yet hold resented to the Lord for making Solomon king (15).

Adonijah’s request seems innocent enough. He went to Bethsheba, Solomon’s mother with a Petition. Bathsheba expresses weary concern. She knew his character. He might not be going to her peacefully (13).

Adonijah asked her to go before Solomon with his solicitation. Adonijah wanted to marry Abishag, David’s beautiful young personal attendant (17). Abishag was assigned to help David in his old age. She shared his bed to keep him warm. Yet she remained a virgin.

Solomon saw Adonijah’s nefarious duplicity. If Adonijah would marry Abishag, he would be all but proclaim himself king (22). Solomon had him put to death for such a request (23). Solomon refused his mother’s solicitation on Adonijah’s behalf.

Adonijah was wrong only because of one reason, the Lord had made it clear that Solomon would be king. Seeking otherwise was a sin. I need to examine why I want to get ahead. Is it my will or the Lord’s will? Am I resisting God’s plan for me or submitting to it? If I go against God’s intentions it could mean my death.

BDBD is 1 Kings 1:49-53

Adonijah knew he was in danger of execution. Fear entered his body as if he breathed in deadly gas (50). He ran to the altar of the Lord where sacrifices were made and took hold of the horns at its corners. Grasping the horns of the altar was a way of seeking sanctuary or protection when one was charged with a serious offense though this act is not in the law of Moses. The horns were the place where blood from a sacrificial animal was applied for atonement for sin (Exodus 29:12; Lev. 4:7). The area around the altar was sacred. No one was to be put to death there. Adonijah declared servitude (loyalty) to Solomon (51).

Solomon showed grace to Adonijah. He allowed Adonijah to go to his house if he showed himself a worthy man (52). However, if Adonijah proved evil, which is disloyal to Solomon, he would be killed. Solomon would keep an eye on him. In those days such grace was not shown by kings.

Grace to a repetitive person is becoming rarer and rarer in modern society. Vengeance and violence are celebrated in culture, song, and drama. People will kill if someone else speaks poorly to them. Self and social pride and dignity are sustained throw the fist and gun. Some have been killed because they don’t like the way someone looks at them.

Jesus came full of grace and truth. He did not repay evil for evil. He turned the other cheek. When a Bible teacher dismissed and humiliated him he was gentle and kind. When a harlot fell weeping at his knees he forgave her sins and blessed her.

I choose today to not get behind a pulpit and preach to others about grace. I am making myself conscious of being full of grace and truth. I know in my bones in days to come someone will wrong me to the point of rage. I will be tested. I am telling myself, “Show grace to the repetitive.”

BDBD is 1 Kings 1:32-50

Good news for one person is bad news for another. Solomon was anointed King of Judah by King David’s order. This was good news for Solomon and his mother. This was bad news for Adonijah who wrongly claimed the throne before Solomon. Even a small amount of truth will be received, processed, and reacted upon differently by everyone who receives it.

The truth is David ordered that Solomon be anointed king of Judah. Everyone reacted differently to this truth. Priest Zadok, Prophet Nathan, and Captain Benaiah obeyed David’s orders to retrieve Solomon, bring him to Gihon (a spring that supplied water to Jerusalem), and anoint Solomon (32-34). The people rejoiced and sang songs so much that the ground shook (40). Adonijah and all with him ran in fear.

Truth cannot be changed. Truth is not in danger of becoming false. Truth can dispel and dissipate a false statement, but a false statement cannot change the truth. Truth is like light shining in a shadow of lies; they simultaneously vanish into nihility and fade from memory.

Jesus taught, ““If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” (Jn 8:31–32) Jesus taught the truth. Knowing and living them is freedom. Now that is a beacon brighter than a laser.

Not everyone received this as good news. Some will perceive it as bad. Those who react to it as good news will be anointed kings. Those who react to it as bad news will run in fear.

BDBD is 1 Kings 1:28-31

When David learned that his fourth-born son, Adonijah had acted against his will and made himself king, David immediately gave orders to make Solomon king. He promised queen Bathsheba and he kept that promise (28-30). Bathseba showed David great respect and honor (31). She bowed low and called him lord.

Here is displayed good marriage practices. The husband exhibits love to his wife by making promises for her benefit and keeping them. The wife exhibits respect to her husband.

Some will bulk at these practices because modern culture teaches the opposite. Yet, no one can ignore basic human impulses. Men need and respond to respect. Women need and respond to love. Men also need and respond to love and women also need and respond to respect.

Fundamentally we were created in the image of God. Love and respect are basic to God’s essence. God the Father loves his Son and the Son respects and honors the Father. These are two of the seven spirits emanating in and from the Holy Spirit.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself… However, each one of you also must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.” (Eph 5:25-33). Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything.” (Eph 5:22–24)

Love and respect are selfless, not selfish. Love and respect are sacrificial and trust. Love and respect are more pleasant than any self-gaining life.

BDBD is 1 Kings 1:16-27

Trouble does not consider a person’s age. David was well advanced in years. Yet, trouble remained an invited guest in his life. Jesus said, “In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart, I have overcome the world.”

David’s fourth son declared himself king without his father’s consent (25). He threw a party and went through religious ceremonies. David was made aware of this treachery from one of his wives, Bathsheba, and a prophet, Nathan. David needed to act quickly and decisively to keep his word to Bathsheba and Nathan the prophet. Acting quickly can have its complications when a person is advanced in years.

A temptation is to become relaxed mentally, physically, and spiritually as I age. I need to stay focused for I never know when trouble will pay me an unwelcome visit.

BDBD is 1 Kings 1:1-15

The book of Kings records things about Solomon’s life that Chronicles does not. I will look at them in the coming days before I look at the book of Ecclesiastes.

1 Kings records a challenger to the throne, Adonijah, just before David passed away. David’s fourth son was Adonijah who was born after Absolon. (Absolon died trying to take the throne from David earlier.) Adonijah put himself forward to be king even though David had made it clear that Solomon would be king after him.

Adonijah waited as long as he could before he made his move. Yet he had to make his move before David passed, as was the custom and God-directed way. When David was getting so old that he could not care for himself (1-4) Adonijah made his move.

Adonijah did not have the backing of the high priest, the prophets, or the king’s professional soldiers and guards (10). This stands to reason because they were either loyal to God, David, or both. However, everyone else either backed him or did not challenge his attempt to seize the throne (9).

Nathan, the Lord’s prophet assigned to David acted according to God’s direction and David’s wishes. He informed Bathsheba Adonijah’s attempt to become king instead of Solomon, her son (11). Nathan gave sound instruction to her on how to stop it (12-14). Bathsheba agreed it was a sound plan and did as he instructed (15).

Obvious reasons exist why Adonijah wanted the set of the highest power in the land. However, an even stronger reason existed. Verse 6 says, “His father had never interfered with him by asking, “Why do you behave as you do?” David did not discipline Adonijah, nor did he instruct him in the way he should go. He did not punish him when he behave in a civil manner.

A wise father compliments and encourages his children. He does not exasperate them. Yet at the same time, a loving father teaches and punishes his children when they misbehave. Children need to learn social and family boundaries.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 9:13-28

1 Kings 10:14-29 is a similar passage.

Solomon was given by the Lord great riches and splendor beyond what his father had even dreamed of when he wandered in the desert trying to keep one step ahead of Saul’s spear. David longed for a glass of water from Bethlehem while his son’s annual intake of gold was man’s number, 666 talents (that’s about 25 tons). What makes one person wealthy and another with few possessions or even no possessions and hungry?

Could it merely be a person that works hard, saves, and invests will be wealthy, healthy, and wise? This may have been true for some as it was for Solomon, but it is not a universal truth. What about children who are born in privilege, do little, and remain wealthy because their ancestors became so wealthy? This may have been true for some as it was for Solomon, but it is not a universal truth.

The truth is each person’s life is different. We cannot predict what will happen next; pandemics, war, natural disasters, and health problems have depleted many a fortune in hours and minutes. While others suddenly find themselves is comfort and easy with little work of their own.

“Everyone wants more” is a universal truth. The person who says they do not want more stays that until they desire and then acquire something new.

Two more universal truths are common to all societies in history. An abundance of opulence does not guarantee happiness and contentment. Just as counter-culture is that poverty is not merely made of those in misery and depression.

Another truth is that wealth is usually defined as someone having more than peers in their family, friends, and neighbors.

One final thought, just because I want someone else’s wealth does not justify me taking from them, lusting after their possessions, and institutionalizing a distribution of others’ hard-earned and/or God-given gifts to myself and others. The opposite is true. Just because I have wealth does not justify me keeping it to myself, lusting after more, and institutionalizing keeping others from earning properly in proportion to what they work for.

Jesus and the apostles did not even have a place to sleep and ate poverty grain from the fields. Solomon made silver common to the point of being worthless (20). Be grateful for either.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 9:1-12

1 Kings 10:1-13 also records the queen of Sheba visiting Solomon. There are some slight differences between the two accounts.

The Queen of Sheba had tough questions for Solomon to answer (2). She had a lot on her mind (1). Being queen she must have been tempted by shyness, pride, and fear to try to solve problems on her own. Yet she overcame these and set out to get answers.

The location of Sheba has several competing possibilities. Some believe it was in either south-west Arabia or modern-day Sudan on the north-east coast of Africa. Either place made the trip hard and dangerous. The Queen of Sheba exhibited grandeur by risking the trip to improve her life and country.

Seeking out advice and advancing education is good and wise. I need not shy away from asking questions. With the worse answers only being either wrong, a “NO”, or an “I DON’T KNOW” and the best only being a wealth of information to improve my existence only a fool would succumb to shyness, fear, and pride.

Solomon supplied the Queen of Sheba with all the answers and information she needed (2). She was exuberant and overwhelmed (4). Both she and Solomon was blessed by the occasion. Jesus said of her, “The Queen of the South will rise at the judgment with the men of this generation and condemn them; for she came from the ends of the earth to listen to Solomon’s wisdom, and now one greater than Solomon is here.” (Matt. 12:42; Luke 11:31) Seeking out advice from a man of God could lead to eternal life.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 8:11-18

1 Kings 9:24:-28 is of the same subject. Three subject matters are addressed; Solomon’s Egyptian wife, sacrificed burnt offerings, and entrepreneurial entourage.

Men and women have many issues and matters that we believe and feel are important and so implore our attention. Some have to do with honor and pride, while others have to do with interdependence and society. While these need to be incorporated into my life the three universal human subjects that Solomon centered his attention to at the beginning of his reign are spouse and family (11), God and spiritual life (12-16), and self-sustained finance (17-18).

Solomon made an alliance with Pharaoh king of Egypt and married his daughter shortly after he became king before he started to build the temple (1 Kings 3:1). Although the Bible does not record their son, Rehoboam succeeded Solomon as king it is understood he was. Twenty years after they married Solomon was still concerned about the well-being of his wife. However, Solomon considered one thing more important than his spouse at this time in his life, the holiness of the Lord his God (11). The solution was to build her a new palace, one adjacent to his and the temple.

Solomon’s relationship to the Lord God, the spiritual well-being of his nation, and religious ceremony were also important to Solomon. Solomon followed the laws and decrees the Lord established through Moses and David (12-16).

Solomon supported himself and his family through trade with other nations. He formed a political and financial relationship with Hiram (Huram), the king of Tyre on the Phoenician coast who were maritime experts. Solomon took a risk. Yet the Lord granted him success as he had promised.

Solomon kept his priorities right during the first twenty years of his reign. Life was good and all were happy. When Solomon ignored all three of these in the second half of his reign his life, his family, and the nation slid into meaningless anxiety and anguish. He records this in his book, “Ecclesiastes” shortly before his death. His conclusion is, “Fear God and keep his commandment, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil.” (Eccl. 12:13-14) Judgment is not only afterlife but during life as well. My decisions have consequences for me, my family, and my society. I need to keep my priorities wise and clear.

DB is 2 Chronicles 8:1-11

Chronicles record Solomon’s successes and achievements. These verses are of great building projects; the temple, his palace, new villages in Lebanon, and other areas of Israel. Solomon also built a palace for his Egyptian wife (11).

I want to write that the Lord gave Solomon success because he built the temple. I also want to say that the Lord kept his promise to Solomon. When Solomon asked for wisdom, the Lord said he would also give him wealth, riches, and honor such as no king who was before you ever had and none after you will have (2 Chron. 1:12).

I wrote these truths, but my heart is not in it this Friday morning. I am sleepy, too sleepy to think about someone else’s success. Too tired to look for understanding and direction. I will seek the Lord in meditation and prayer in my easy chair.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 7:17-22

1 Kings 9:1-9 also record the Lord appearing to Solomon.

After the Lord spoke to Solomon about choosing and consecrating the temple Solomon built so that the LORD’s Name may be there forever he talked directly to Solomon. The Lord reminded Solomon about the covenant he had made with his father David (18). The Lord now made the same covenant with Solomon (17,18).

The covenant with David and Solomon was a two-sided covenant. Solomon was to walk before the Lord, do all the Lord commanded, and observe the Lord’s decrees and laws (17). If Solomon did this the Lord would establish Solomon’s throne.

Solomon had a choice. He could turn away and forsake the Lord’s decrees and commands and serve other gods and worshiped them too (19). If he did then the Lord send the Israelites into exile and reject the temple Solomon made (20). The Lord’s Name would not be diminished for everyone would know that the Israelite’s disaster came because Solomon and the Lord’s people failed to keep their end of the covenant (21,22).

Jesus established a new covenant with his people. The basis of the covenant of the blood of the lamb can be found in the gospels. I have accepted the covenant. The new covenant is similar to the covenant with Israel with important differences.

The new covenant is two-sided too. I am to have faith in the Lord as Abraham did. The Lord Jesus’ side is to be my God through eternity. He would free me from sin, judgment, and death. He is my friend, lover, and master. When he speaks I trust and obey in faith.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 7:11-16

Some Christians will have problems in accepting the words the Lord God told Solomon after the dedication. The Lord God told Solomon that he causes drought, locusts infestations, and plague among his people (13). Some believe that God does not bring nor cause bad things to happen. They are correct. The fact of the matter is these things are not bad from God’s perspective. Many times they are the best means in helping his people from sinning. Often they are the last resort that will turn his people from sinful habits and impulses.

A good parent who loves their children wants the best for them. They do whatever is wise and best for their children. They sacrifice themselves for their children.

Children are born with human nature; the potential to do extraordinary good and bad. Doing good is righteousness. Doing bad is sin. The truth of human nature is that we tend to sin so easily and quickly.

A good parent recognizes the power of human nature in the children they hold so dear. They know the means to help their children succeed in life by showing and giving them life tools. The tools give their beloved ones the desire to do right and the longing to resist doing wrong. Tools include boundaries, rewards, and punishment (14).

The Lord God is an excellent parent. Therefore he is a great example. God does not remove the tool of punishment from his means to lovingly help his children. He is always looking to see if a wayward child has turned from their wicked way (14).

Though it hurts to do so God the Father disciplines his people. We think bad things are happening. God knows that these things will end in good. God does send drought, locusts infestations, and plague among his people (13). But only as a last resort.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 7:1-10

The manifestation the Lord God gave Israel to show his acceptance of their dedication ceremony and the temple they built was extraordinary. Fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices (1). Also, the glory of the LORD filled the temple as it had since the start of the dedication ceremony when they brought the ark into the temple (1, 5:14)

The people’s response reveals their hearts and attitudes. When they saw all that had happened they knelt on the pavement with their faces to the ground, and they worshiped and gave thanks to the LORD (2). They had a change of attitude.

I suspect that they are like most people, including me when we go to a worship event. Whether it be a church service, revival, or musical performance and celebration sometimes it is more like a routine, a habit, or perhaps occasionally like a hindrance. On those days and at that time my heart is lukewarm; neither hot nor cold. I bring my body but my heart is not present.

When in that kind of mode and attitude the Lord Jesus may touch my heart or does some extraordinary thing and my demeanor changes. I am consumed by the fire of the Lord. The temple of my soul is filled with the glory of the LORD. My demeanor is transformed. My heart kneels with my face to the ground.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:40-42

Solomon asked the Lord his God to keep his eyes open and ears attentive to the prayers offered in the temple (40). Everyone including me wants God to not only hear but act on prayers, supplications, and requests.

The Lord God has answered some of my prayers according to how I have asked. Yet, others he did not. I have heard many messages and read comments on the subject of prayers. The Bible has a lot of prayers in it and people are thankful when they are answered. Jesus had much to say about prayer and answered people’s requests as they asked. Yet still, I am not happy about the prayer requests awaiting a positive yes to return. I am reminded of how Abraham waited 25 years to receive his request for a son. So I wait.

Solomon also wanted the LORD God to rest in the temple (41). This too I want for now I am his temple. Come Lord and rest in my that I may have rest in you. Bless me with your presence. Do not delay your positive yes to my request. Be with me a man of little faith.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:36-39

Solomon’s prayer to the Lord God during the temple dedication ceremony continues with a section containing “The Way of Redemption and Restoration.” “The Romans Road” is a witnessing tool that uses verses from Paul’s letter to the Roman congregation as a traverse to salvation. Solomon’s “Way of Redemption and Restoration” in these three verses is the same.

“There is no one who does not sin” (36). When we sin we do so first and foremost against God (36). The statements “when we sin”, “I have sinned”, and “if I sin” are joined with “because I sinned” to form the essence of the fallen nature all are possessed with. Sin is defined as “we have done wrong and acted wickedly” (37).

Sin has consequences. Sin angers God (36). Thus, God removes his protection and help. Naturally and immediately the enemy, Satan takes us captive far away from God (36). Satan inflicts misery and pain in the life of captivity. Also, the enemy within, our sinful nature possesses our thoughts, feelings, and actions. Our sinful nature fools us into believing the resistance to all that is right and good will bring us peace, love, and contentment.

Redemption and Restoration start with awareness, acceptance, and confession, “I have sinned, have done wrong and acted wickedly.” (37) The confession is “a change of heart” in the land of captivity (37). It is a plead with God (37) and a turning back to God will all ones heart and soul in the land of captivity where one is taken (38). This is repenting (37).

God the Father in heaven, his dwelling place hears the prayer and plead of a changed heart (39). He forgives those who sinned against him (39). He upholds their cause (39). He rescues them from captivity. He brings them back to him.

Solomon does not state here that Redemption and Restoration are made possible because of the shedding of Jesus’ blood when he was crucified. Yet, the whole point of temple worship was to foreshadow Jesus, the lamb of God.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:34-35

Though war is bad in many ways, war is unavoidable and common in this world. The Lord had told Israel when they were to go to war and how they were to engage in war (34). When Israel was sent to war they were to pray toward the temple built for His Name. The Lord God would hear from heaven and uphold their cause (35).

War is conflict on a national scale. There are personal wars too. Conflict is a part of life. Conflict is not always bad. I once thought all conflict was not good and avoided conflicts. Now I see that conflict is often the only process to obtain redemption, resolution, and restoration.

Jesus on the night he was betrayed was in conflict. His human body did not want to go through crucifixion. So he prayed, “Father, take this cup from me.” His godly nature finally decided to submit himself to sacrifice. So he prayed, “Not my will, but yours be done.”

When conflict comes I can take Jesus’ example and Solomon’s advice. I can go to my Father in heaven in prayer. I do not need to go to a temple of stone, wood, and iron for the Spirit lives in me.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:32-33

One God alone exists. He is the God of all. He is the Father of all. Though the temple was in Jerusalem all could go to the temple and call on his name (32). God would hear them (33).

God dwells in heaven (33). His name is known throughout the earth (33).

Jesus told his disciples just before his arrest, trial, death, and resurrection. “I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.” (John 10:16) Now is the time Jesus is gathering people from all nations to his sheep pen. I am not of a descendant of Israel, yet I am a part of Jesus’ flock.

Jesus told his disciples just before His ascension, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will not be condemned.” (Mark 16:15-16)

A foreigner needed to take an act of faith and travel to Jerusalem to pray and worship at the temple. When he prayed with this faith he could be heard. Now, as Jesus declared, all anyone in the world needs to do is believe and be baptized to be heard.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:28-31

God deals with each person according to what they do (30). God searches each person’s heart (30). He knows my soul every moment; every breath and between breaths.

Only God knows my thoughts and motives (30). The devil does not know, spouses do not know, parents and children do not know, peers, and co-workers do not know what makes me live as I do. God knows all I have done, all I am doing, and all I will do, and why I have and will act in this way. God knows me even better than I know myself.

What does God do with the knowledge of who I am? He does not use knowledge of me for his selfish gain. The Lord God does not use knowledge of me with disdain. He interacts with me in love, wisdom, and strength.

The Lord Jesus gives each person the proper and good reply to the decisions they make. God does all so that I may have a proper relationship with him and others. The best relations are in love with mind, heart, body, and strength.

A loving relationship with God includes fear of him and walking in his ways all the time (31). God created me in love. He has loving plans for me. If I stray from them he will not hold back anything that will cause me to return to the good life. If need be God will bring famine, plague, blight, locusts, or enemies besieging me.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:26-27

When Israel sinned by worshiping idols one of the things that caused them to come back to him was drought. God shut up the heavens when they sinned (26). They admitted their sin and stopped doing it when they were disciplined.

When Israel lived according to the covenant, the right way to live, blessed them by sending rain (27). The crops grew, livestock and humans drank water, and people bathed regularly. Life was pleasant.

Does God always interact this way with his people? Does he interact with his people this way today, in the age of grace?

God does not always interact this way with those who do not believe in him. However, God does orchestrate everyone’s life so that they will have the chance to know him and enter a personal relationship with them.

However, when it comes to his people God does interact this way with them, to a point. God will do anything to keep his people from doing things that will harm them and those around him.

However, he does not force us to make the right decision. He always lets me make the decision. If I sin God will lead me to repentance, but I need to decide. If I stubbornly refuse to repent God will let me do what I have decided no matter how much it pains me and him.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:24-25

Israel was the Lord’s chosen people because of the faith of Abraham. He helped them grow and mature. He made a covenant with them at Mount Sinai. He was their God and they were his people.

The covenant they agreed to was two-sided, each had their part to uphold. When they sinned the Lord did not abandon them. He always dealt with them when they broke their end of the covenant.

The first thing the Lord would do when they sinned (the main one was always turning away from God and worshiping idols) was to remove his hand of protection and blessing. This would cause the Israelites to turn back to the Lord and confess his name (24). They would pray and make supplication (24).

The temple Solomon had just dedicated was the place where they were to pray and make supplication. When the Israelites repented in this manner the Lord would hear them and forgive the sins of his people (25). When they were brought into captivity he brought them back to the promised land (25).

Today I live in a new covenant of the blood of the lamb, Jesus. Yet the Lord is the same with me and all in the new covenant as he was with Israel and their covenant. He chose me and I stand by faith (Mark 2:5; Luke 7:50). Jesus promised that he would never leave me nor forsake me (Hebrews 13:5).

If and when I sin I have one who speaks to the Father in my defense, Jesus Christ, the Righteous One (1 John 2:1). I can confess my sin. He is faithful and just and will forgive me my sins and purify me from all unrighteousness (1 John 1:9,10) I do not need to go to the temple, church, pastor, or priest for since God’s Spirit dwells in me I am a temple and a royal priesthood (1 Peter 2:9).

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:22-23

We wrong others and we show random acts of kindness. Yet we wrong neighbors more than we are kind to them. This is human fallen nature. Jesus’ parable of the good Samaritan has three men who are wronged, one who is kind, and one who is paid to help someone wronged. No one admitted they were wrong.

The person who is wronged cries, “Foul play!” and seeks justice, penalty, and repayment. We are more interested in these than being kind. We spend much effort in seeking justice, penalty, and repayment from others than practicing them ourselves. Why not be a riot of kindness instead of a riot for change and justice?

The Lord knows our fallen heart. So he created laws to show us the way of righteousness and justice (Exodus 22:10-11; Lev. 6:1-5). The Israelites were to swear before the Lord their innocence. These protected the innocent.

The temple was the place where to Israelites were to take an oath (22). The priest would hear them. The Lord would hear, judge, and act (23). The guilty would suffer the consequences of his act, “bringing down on his own head what he has done.” (23)

Now I am the temple of the Lord for the Spirit of God dwells in me. Every morning I seek quiet time with the Lord in his temple. I ask the Spirit to reveal his work in his temple during the last 24 hours and my actions towards others with his temple in the past 24 hours. This is the New Covenant’s way of taking an oath before the Lord’s altar in his temple.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:18-21

Solomon is in the middle of prayer during the dedication of the temple. He asks a question, not apparently to God, but to himself and others. The question is almost a realization. “Will God really dwell on the earth… in this temple I have built?” (18) Solomon was perplexed for God is too complex for even the wisest person to comprehend. That does not mean that I can come to know God in a personal intimate way.

Solomon used these verses in 19-21; “give attention, hear, be open, hear, hear, hear, forgive.” Deep in my being, I long for God to hear me, to see me, to pay attention to me, and to forgive me. Yet he does do all these things. The fact is that I sometimes do not believe it and therein lays the problem; faith.

Take heart for God hears. Though things do not go the way I want; he hears. Though today is a happy day; he sees. Though today is a fearful day; he is here. Though today brings depression; he comforts. Though today I sin; he forgives.

God does dwell on earth in the temple of my soul. He experiences what I experience. He knows and understands. Jesus says, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matt 11:28). And, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:14-17

God always keeps his promises. The Lord, God of Israel, the one and only God kept his promises to David (15). God’s promise was based on a covenant of love (14). The covenant was a two-sided covenant.

God’s side of the covenant of love was that he would ensure that Israel would obtain the promised land and have peace on every side. God also promised to make one of David’s son’s king. God promised to dwell in the temple that David started and Solomon finished. God kept these promises (15).

David and his sons’ side of the covenant of love was to be careful in all they do to walk before God according to the law, the covenant between God and Israel. David kept his side of the covenant for the most part. He did fail with Bathsheba and Uriah and the counting of the men eligible to fight.

God has made a covenant of love with the church (Luke22:20). Jesus’ death, resurrection, and sending the Holy Spirit were his part of the covenant. My side of the covenant is to believe in him wholeheartedly. Just as with the covenant with Israel I am to continue wholeheartedly (15).

Jesus promised many things for me and my future. I can and should remember them all.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:7-13

1 Kings 8:14-22 is another record of Solomon’s words at the dedication.

Solomon finished the temple as his father David had instructed (10). Building the temple took seven years. Add to that the many years that David prepared. Building the temple was a continual drain on Solomon and all Israel. People were forced to work many hours, days, months, years, and decades. The financial cost was a stack of coins that fell hard on the people. A whole generation broke their backs and wallets; unrecognized solemn dedication.

The temple was finally finished. How great it feels to complete a hard, detailed, and complex project. How much more satisfying it is to know that the Lord God blessed the work!

When Jesus looked at the people of Israel and Judah he saw that they were sheep without a shepherd. He declared, “The harvest is plentiful. But the workers are few.” (Matt. 9:37, Luke 10:2) Jesus with these words honors his workers who are few in number in crowds of people who do not recognize them.

I think of all the people before me who silently toiled in the fields of people for the Name of Jesus; those who cared for children, adolescents, tweens, couples, elderly. They helped the poor and wealthy; intelligent and educated as well as the mentally unstable; healthy, sick, and terminally ill; they petitioned the Lord on their knees in their tears; they worked endless hours writing and creating art to magnify his name. Few saw their beautiful love, most were unrecognized and not appreciated. I appreciate you. Jesus appreciates you.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 6:1-6

The Lord appeared in a dark cloud when the temple that Solomon built was dedicated (5:14,16:1). A cloud also enveloped Mount Sinai when the Lord God descended to talk with Moses giving him the ten commandments. A pillar of cloud also lead the Israelites in the desert to the promised land. Solomon remembered that the Lord dwells in a dark cloud. He and all Israel knew that the Lord God entered the temple when they dedicated it.

The Lord never told anyone to build a temple (5). This was David’s idea (1 Kings 8:17). The Lord never told David to build it in Jerusalem (5). This was David’s idea. However, at the dedication the LORD God, the God of Israel chose the temple in Jerusalem for his Name to be there (6).

The Name signifies God’s revealed character or self-revelation as a person. The Name is equivalent to the Lord himself. The temple in Jerusalem bore the Name as long as the Lord dwelt there as a place where people could meet with the Lord. However, because of sin Israel went into captivity. So the Lord left the temple and traveled with them.

Two thousand years ago the Lord left the temple again. The curtain tore in two as the Lord left. He now dwells in the temple inside his followers. The Name now dwells in his people (John 14:20; Eph. 2:21). 1 Cor. 3:16 says, “Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?”

Jesus tells his people, “I am coming soon. Hold on to what you have, so that no one will take your crown. Him who overcomes I will make a pillar in the temple of my God. Never again will he leave it. I will write on him the Name of my God and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which is coming down out of heaven from my God; and I will also write on him my new Name.” (Rev. 3:1-12)

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 5

The pomp and grandeur of the procession that brought the Ark of the covenant from the tent that David constructed in Jerusalem to the finished temple are depicted in 2 Chronicles 5 and 1 Kings 8. David with all his passion, Solomon with all his wisdom, Harum with all his skill, and Israel with all their wealth did their best to make the celebration an event to honor God. However, when the glory (kabod in Hebrew) of the LORD filled the temple of God all men were truly humbled and elevated (14,15).

The LORD God is surrounded by light too luminous for humans to gaze upon without losing their eyesight. Thus, all those who have gazed upon the Lord’s radiant and brilliant wonder shielded their eyes. The glory of the Lord came on Mt. Sinai just after the Lord led the Israelites out of Egypt (Ex. 16:7-10, 24:16-17), in desert Tabernacle (Ex. 40:34-38; Lev. 9:6, 23; Num. 14:10), and in the Temple in Jerusalem (1 Kings 8:10-11; and 2 Chronicles 5:14, 7:1-3, Isa. 6:1-4).

Jesus prophesied to the Sanhedrin after he declared that he is the Messiah, “And you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.” (Mark 14:16) Jesus coming in the glory of the Lord is prophecies by Isaiah (Isaiah 4:2-6, 35:1-2, 40:4-5, 59:19-20, 60). Ezekiel also saw the glory of the Lord. (Ezekiel 1:25-28; 3:12, 22-23; 9:3-4; 10:3-4, 18-22; 11:22-23; 43:1-5; 44:4).

Luke 2:9 says the glory of the Lord shown over the shepherds when the angels said Jesus was born. Paul calls Jesus the “Lord of glory” in 1 Corinthians 2:8 and the “radiance of God’s glory” in Hebrews 1:3.

Jesus is my friend and shepherd. More than these he is also my master, my God, and my Lord. Reverance and fear of the Lord is known by those who draw close to his glory.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 4

The details of the construction of all the items used in the temple are mostly recorded in Chronicles though 1 Kings 7 mentions some of the work. Since the two books of Chronicles (two scrolls) were written sometime shortly after the Jews returned from exile in Babylon and Assyria and before the temple was rebuilt it is understandable why the Lord chose to give them this account. Much of the information was collected from other scrolls besides 1 Kings 7.

Huram-Abi is mentioned many times in chapters 2 thru 4 and 1 Kings 7. He was half Israelite since his mother was a Naphtali and his father a man of Tyre (1 Kings 7:13). He was not a Jew. He was from Tyre, and thus a Phoenician. He was sent to King Solomon to work on the temple.

The linage of the man whom God chose to construct and mold all the elegant and important bronze articles used in the temple is interesting to me. When the Jews returned from captivity they refused the let the people who were in Judah and Israel during the exile to work on the rebuilding of the temple (Ezra 4). They are called enemies of Judah and Benjamin (Ezra 4:1). Yet Solomon not only allowed others to build the first temple in Jerusalem but welcomed and needed Huram.

There is a time for everything under the sun. A person’s linage is not important as his or her character. Often God uses the most unlikely person to do the most critical and much-needed tasks.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 3:3-17

The inside of the temple was filled with glistening polished gold. Even a small amount of light would reflect brightly. The finest materials were crafted into precise finely decorated usable shapes. All were made to represent the Lord God’s throne in heaven. The magnificent temple was a place where people could present themselves to the invisible, powerful, glorious maker of the universe.

My soul is now the temple of God. The Spirit of God dwells in my being. I am to submit to God so my life, my being, my character, my heart, and my mind are to be an acceptable place for God to dwell. The attention to every detail is to be God’s exacting standard. I am a living stone being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priest, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. (1 Peter 2:5)

My purifying would not be possible without Jesus’ sacrifice for me. Jesus’ death makes me acceptable to God. In view of God’s mercy, I submit my body as a living sacrifice holy, pleasing, and acceptable to God as my spiritual act of worship. (Romans 12;1)

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 3:1-2

The temple was built on Mount Moriah (aka Mount Zion) in the spring of 966 B.C. The Lord had appeared to David on this mountain (1). The meeting was not a pleasant one. 70,000 men died of a plague and the Lord had sent an angel to destroy Jerusalem (1 Chron. 21) because David had counted the fighting men.

The angel (who is identified as the LORD here) had paused before he continued into the city. His pause was long enough for David and the city officials to go to the place. I imagine that the LORD had paused because he was hovering over the place where Abraham almost offered his son Isaac many centuries earlier (Gen. 22). The Lord remembered Abraham’s faith and love for him and so did David and city officials.

God does not forget his people’s faith, hope, and love. They are the greatest gifts, the only gifts we can give to him. The impact lasts for generations in ways I cannot even begin to imagine. The world believes these acts are nothing. Even I wonder, “Will a descendant of mine know how important my faith in Jesus has been? Will they also have the same faith?” The LORD Jesus knows.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 2:11-18

Hiram, king of Tyre was pleased with Solomon’s request so much so that he praised the Lord, the God of Israel (11,12). Tyre’s chief deity was Melqart, also spelled Melkart or Melkarth, the Phoenician god. He was also called the Tyrian Baal.

Hiram didn’t say that the Lord was his God. So he wasn’t converted from his pagan deities and idol worship to Judaism. He was only glad that Solomon was wise and friendly with Tyre, acknowledging the existence of Solomon’s God, the Lord.

Many reasons exist why people seek some form of religion. Many came to Jesus when He walked the earth for many reasons. The same is today. I am not their judge, I only acknowledge that others are different than me. Some will be like Hiram acknowledging Jesus while holding onto superstition and pagan beliefs.

How about me? Why do I confess the name of the Lord Jesus? Am I happy and joyful merely because something good has come my way? Or does my faith in Jesus have root in wanting more than just a casual relationship with him? Is my passion for him hot or lukewarm?

Jesus said many are called but few follow. He told the apostles after all left him after feeding the 5,000, “Are you not the twelve I have chosen?” meaning they remain because he chose them. I remain only because of the grace and mercy of Jesus. I exist in Christ with faith, hope, and love. Only these three remain in the end.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 2:1-10

  Solomon announced his continuing commitment to build a magnificent temple to the Lord God of Israel as his father David had instructed him and had started (1). He also announced his plans to build a large palace as his father had done (1).
   Solomon needed large cedar logs to build these buildings, a resource that Israel did not have. He sent a message to Hiram king of Tyre stating his desire to aquire cedar from the vast forest on mount Lebanon (3,8).
   Solomon’s request contained the confession, “But who is able to build a temple for him, since the heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain him? Who then am I to build a temple for him, except as a place to burn sacrifices before him? (6)” The words “contain him” is in most English translations of the Bible. Simply put Solomon’s God inspired wisdom was stating the truth that even the heavens are too small a place for the Lord God to live in.

   Some may state that this is evidence that God’s Spirit cannot dwell in a human let alone in the person of Jesus Christ. However, Solomon continued his confession, “…except as a place to make offerings.” The temple was never meant nor contain nor imprison all of the essence God. It was made for humans to present offerings and inquire of the Lord just as God instructed Moses.

   Similar to this, Jesus who is God in the flesh is the exact representative of God so that humans may physically interact with God. So was the case of the Lord God with Adam and Eve who “walked with the Lord God in the cool of the evening. ” So was the case of one of the three visitors to Abraham. So was the case with Jacob who wrestled with God one night. So is it with Job and the wirl-wild, Moses in the cleft of the rock, all the prophets and many more.

   Now the Spirit of Jesus is in me, not that all of God is contained in me. Rather, all that is God is part of my being. God is always accessible to me and always always accessing me.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 1:13-17

  The Lord God enabled Solomon to be extremely wealthy and prosperous. Horses and chariots were a measure of extravagance in those days. Solomon had many of both (14). He also made silver, cedar, and gold common (15). Thus his wealth flowed to the people of Israel through commerce.
  Before this shower of wealth and status were all the battles won by his father. God, through David who was after the Lord’s heart, enabled Solomon to have peace. This in turn provided a stable growing economy. All this was arranged by the Lord God as he had promised David.
   What did Solomon and Israel do with the environment provided and arranged by the Lord? Tjey did not do what the Lord wanted. They did not advance and share the wisdom and knowledge of the Lord with the nations. Instead of helping outward the rusted and corroded inward.
   I am not envious of Solomon and his wealth. The Chronicler(s) does not mention Solomon’s eventual path into selfish sinful endeavors that is common among the wealthy. That is recorded elsewhere..
  Finally, after seeking self centered pleasures and sin, in his later life book Ecclesiastes Solomon wrote, “Meaningless, meaningless, utterly meaningless.” Solomon was not happy in his wealth and sin (Eccl. 2:1, 6:2, 12:1). After I complete Solomon’s life in 2 Chronicles I will look at that book.

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 1:7-12

  What is it I want? If I were in Solomon’s place and the Lord God were to say to me, “Ask for whatever you want me to give you,” what would I say?
   Yet, I am not like Solomon. I am not young. I am not starting out in a new career. I am not king of the regional power. I do not have enemy kingdoms on my boarders. I do not have siblings who want to take the throne. I do not have a family to start, a royal line to preserve.
   Yet in my place what would I ask for? What do I ask in prayer? What do I want and what do I need? Is there a poor response?
   The Lord’s reply to Solomon’s request for wisdom to rule Israel reveals that one request is better than others. Do I have but one request? I can pray anytime and anywhere.
   Jesus taught,  “Seek first my kingdom and righteousness and all these will be given.”

BDBD is 2 Chronicles 1:1-6

   1 Kings 3 is similar to this chapter.
   Many Israelites had religious inclination. Some had a pure love for God. David did and now Solomon did. The ark of the Lord which contained the covenant etched in stone and manna was in Jerusalem. However, the tabernacle, that is the tent of meeting was still on mount Gilead. When anyone wanted to worship and inquire of the Lord they would have to go to there.
   Solomon was an adolescent. He had many older brothers who were jealously plotting to overthrow Solomon. The Israelites were many, powerful, well educated, and wealthy like never before. Solomon was intimidated by the thought of leadership. He accepted his father’s advice and went to seek the Lord.

   Life always seems to have circumstances that are challenging and/or intimidating. Just when things are going in a good way, a new problem comes.
   Whether in want or in plenty seek the Lord. The Israelites would go to mount Gilead. Where do I go now?
  Jesus was the Lord at mount Gilead. Jesus was in the tabernacle.  Jesus is my mount Gilead.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 29

   David’s speech concerning offerings to fund the building of the temple remind me of pledge offering challenges I hear in my lifetime. I hear them in many social groups and on Christian radio, TV, concerts, and in congregational pews. “An unnamed individual(s) has given a match pledge offering challenge. The individual will match all offerings up to $$$s.”
   I wonder,  “They are going to give it anyway. Who are they kidding? Are they inspiring or do they have other motives?”
   I like Jesus’ wise words, “Do not let your right hand know what your left hand is doing.” ” Do not announce it with trumpets.” (Matt. 6:2,3)
   However, one phrase of David is unique in my experience, “Now, who is willing to consecrate themselves to the Lord today?” (5)

Consecration refers to persons or things being separated to or belonging to God. David did not say the offerings would be consecrated. Rather, he said they would be consecrating themselves to God.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 28

David gave further instructions to his son Solomon in chapter 28. This is first mentioned in chapter 22. Factually chapters 22 and 28 happened at the same time.
   Chapters 23 thru 27 are merely explaining how David organized the kingdom for him and his son. The Lord enabled David to have everything prepared for Solomon and Israel. Solomon’s reign would have been relatively easy because of all that David had done.  Everyone’s life is influenced by the labor of those before us.
   Ancestral influence does not mean that I am free of responsibility and decisions.  David instructed his son, “acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the Lord searches every heart and understands every desire and every thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.

Regardless of the good and poor influence of my parents, grand parents, and all those in line before God holds me accountable for how I respond and deal with their sustaining influence. I am the master of the decision to serve God in spirit and truth.
   David continued,  “Consider now, for the Lord has chosen you to build a house as the sanctuary. Be strong and do the work.”  David  helped Solomon by making preparations to build a house as a sanctuary for the Lord. Jesus is building his house in his people, a place for his Spirit to rest. I am to continue and participate in the effort.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 23-27

These chapters are all about organization of the labor for the Levites, priests, musicians, gatekeepers and the army.
   Concerning the Levites there was a problem to solve. Moses had said the Lord told him that they were carry the ark, set up the tabernacle,  and take it down when they moved. However,  since the moving had stopped, what were they to do? (23:25-26) David gave them new duties to perform in the temple. This nullified many laws and regulations.
   Jesus also nullified many more when he came including the entire sacrificial system.  The law is good, but also temporary.  God’s plan is coming to a specific result that will eventually make all laws void.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 22:11-19

David’s last words to Solomon are also recorded in 1 Chronicles 28:7-21 and 1 Kings 2:1-12.

David in his old age spoke of two subjects to his son; building the temple (11) and discretion and understanding in leading Israel (12).

Parents who love the Lord want their children to accept and live in a relationship with the Lord. David wanted this for his children, especially Solomon.

Parents who love their children also want their children to succeed in life; to live to the full. David wanted this for his children, especially Solomon. The man and woman who have faith in Jesus realize that the two are connected.

Solomon’s wisdom would become famous (the subject of a future DB). A wise person has the quality to apply experience, knowledge, and good judgment to life. Discretion is the freedom to decide what should be done in a particular situation. Understanding is having insight or good judgment.

Wisdom, discretion, and understanding are all gifts of God. Reading and applying the words of the Lord will give all three and success (13). Yet if a person doesn’t practically apply wisdom, live by discretion, and follow thru understanding they are like a ship with sails that are unfurled on a windy way. They get nowhere in life.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 22:5-10

David was intent on building the temple. He wanted it to be “of great magnificence and fame and splendor” (5). Why? What purpose was it that the building was as such?

David wanted it so because it was to be “in the sight of all the nations”. David told his very young son Solomon of his desire and inability to build the temple (6,7). God told David that Solomon would be able to build the temple (10).

Yet, is this what the Lord wanted? Did he want a stone, cedar, and gold temple of great magnificence and fame and splendor? Is that how God wanted his name to be of fame in all the nations? No. He wanted his fame to spread because his people had and followed his laws. “Listen to me, my people; hear me, my nation: The law will go out from me; my justice will become a light to the nations.” (Isa. 51:4) God’s desire was for his people to live according to his word and spread his great name.

God told Moses to tell the Israelites what the king of his people is to do in Deut. 14:14-20. This passage does not say the king was to build a temple. Instead, it greatly emphasizes that he is to copy the law of the Lord, read it daily, learn to revere the Lord his God, and follow carefully all the words of his law and decrees.

Jesus lived the life that David, Solomon, and all the kings of Israel were to live. He made the name of God great in all the nations. He did not do this with a magnificent building of stone, silver, and gold. He did this by living and teaching God’s word.

Jesus is building a temple of flesh, bone, heart, mind, soul, and spirit. Jesus is God’s son and God is his Father (10). God established Jesus’ throne. His kingdom over Israel is forever (10). Jesus is my example.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 22:1-5

David was a man, a husband, a father, a king (thus a warrior), and a man after God’s heart. That which defined him came with certain responsibilities and duties, all claiming his attention. Throughout his life, the most consistent of who he was as a person was a man who loved God with all his heart, mind, soul, and strength. The relationship between David and God had made it possible for David to balance the others.

David had always made a way to have time with the Lord. While in exile from Saul the high priest of the Lord (who had the ephod breastplate) was with him (1 Sam 22:10,20; 23:6; 30:7). When David moved to Jerusalem he had the Ark of the Lord brought there (1 Chron. 16).

However, David had a problem with maintaining his relationship with his Lord. The tabernacle of the Lord, that which was to house the Ark, was on the high place at Gibeon. (1 Chron. 21:29). The tabernacle was a tent. The Lord had instructed Moses on how it was to be built and maintained. The tabernacle was the place where God’s people and especially their leaders were to inquire of the Lord and offer sacrifices.

The solution was to build a new temple made of stone much like the one that had been at Shiloh (Jos. 18:1; Judges 18:31; 1 Sam. 3:21; 4:4; 1 Kings 2:27). David said, “The house of the LORD God is to be here, and also the altar of burnt offering for Israel” (1).

David was told by the Lord that he would not be the one to build the temple, his son would. However, David did make preparations to build the temple. David believed that the LORD God being the center of life was the most important relationship a person and nation were to have. He did all in his power to ensure it.

The business of life is not an excuse to cut back on my personal and public time with the Lord. Rather, it is an incentive to become creative in how I maintain my relationship with the Lord.

Jesus’ life was often filled with nonstop healing and teaching. So he often woke up early in the morning and spent personal time with his Father (Matt. 14:23). I can follow David and Jesus’ example.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 21:18-30

The angel of the Lord responded when David repented (18). David was to make a sacrifice on the threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite. (18) This is the place that Abraham was about to offer Isaac as a sacrifice. This is the sight where David would prepare the temple to be built.

Everyone saw the angel with his sword drawn; Araunah, his sons, David, Gad, and the elders of Israel. The angel of the Lord was standing about ready to kill Araunah and his sons as part of the punishment that resulted in David counting the fighting men. No wonder Araunah was so willing to give the rocky mounting plateau (23). Even David who had fought many battles was afraid (30).

David insisted on paying the full price saying, “I will not take for the LORD what is yours, or sacrifice a burnt offering that costs me nothing.” (24) The Lord requires a tenth of income to be given.

David’s sacrifice was more than the tithe. The sacrifice was to be an atonement to the LORD for David’s arrogant sin. Often offerings hurt. Offerings will be painful at times. “Though there is pain in the sacrifice…” is how a modern Christian worship song goes. (I can’t remember the rest right now.) Sacrifice can be a part of worship.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 21:9-17

2 Samuel 24:1-17 also records that the Lord gave David the choice of three punishments for counting the men able to fight.

Actions have consiquenses. Trust, humility, and obedience will bring blessing. Doubt, pride, and rebellion will bring punishment. This is the clear message of the Chronicler(s). Is this true? It is true only for believers in Jesus, or rather those who have made a decision to live by faith in Christ.

Why are the principles of punishment and reward so fundamentally true and important? The declaration of the Lord to Israel at Mount Ebal when they entered the promised land and this chapter validates these basic principles are true (Deut. 27). They are not only in the Old Testament. Jesus’ parables also validated the principles. The fact that Jesus and the apostles taught that when he comes again he will send out his angels to separate the lambs (the faithful) and the goats (the rebellious).

Maybe the only reason that the principles of faithful trust and obedience bring reward and faithless doubt and rebellion bring punishment for those who have decided to live according to Jesus’ teachings is because the sinful nature will wage war in the soul of God’s children until the day we are transformed at his second coming.

The fact that I have a choice to do what is good and right or not is helped by the understanding and acceptance of these two principles. The fear of the Lord for the believer is the beginning of wisdom, fear of the consequences of making the wrong choice. There are consequences. This is as sure as the truth that as long as the world spins gravity will continually pull my body to its center. Someday the gravity of punishment-reward will not be needed for I will be given the ability to fly. Until then I will learn to walk in the Lord.

For more on this chapter visit the page on this website:

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 21:1-8

2 Samuel 24:1-17 also records David counting the men able to fight.

David ordered Joab, Israel’s army commander to count the mighty men. Joab knew this was wrong. He knew it was the Lord who gives armies strength (3). The Lord enables small armies to defeat large armies. David needed to examine why he wanted to count the number of fighting men (3).

David was either worried or proud. These are self-centered and destructive. Both are motivations outside of love for God and trust in God. Relying on self is always eventually self-defeating. Having confidence in abilities and opportunities while acknowledging that the Lord gives them is not the same as independent self-confidence. Am I proud of myself or grateful to God?

Worry is related to self-confidence. The two work together like coffee stains on wood. Worry is eventually self-defeating. I trust in God don’t I? Then why do I worry and fret? Why do I worry about the clothes that I will wear? Why do I worry about the food that I will eat? Why do I worry about the bills that need to be paid? Why do I count?

Jesus taught, “Seek first the kingdom of God and all these will be given to you as well.” Jesus is the king, not me.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 20

The Lord promised Abraham and his descendants that he would give them Canaan. The Israelites promised that they would obey him at Mount Sanai. God and Israel had made a covenant.

The stones that the covenant was written on were in the Ark of the Covenant. The Ark was in a tent in Jerusalem. David wanted to build a temple to put the Ark in.

The covenant was also written on paper by Moses. Moses also recorded other words that the Lord gave. Moses wrote five books in all. They recorded history, commands, and direction from the Lord.

Some of the commands concerned what the Israelites were to do once they occupies the promised land. They were to conquer it by war. The Lord promised to fight for them. When they won battles they were to kill all the Canaanites. None of them were to live. All the spoils of war were to go to the Lord when the Lord told them so. Because the Israelites disobeyed the Lord he told them he would keep some of their enemies in Canaan to test and to train them.

The Israelites were tired of being attacked and war. They believed it was because they didn’t have a king who would fight for them. So they asked for a king. This was yet another rejection of the Lord. God gave them a king as they asked. The king did fight for them. However, naturally, the Israelites still had to fight. Having a king did not make their lives easier as they believed. It made their life more complicated.

1 Chronicles 20 records some battles during the later years of David, the king of Israel. Some sins are recorded in these passages.

1. David did not go to war in the spring, at the time when kings go off to war (1).

2. David took the plunder of war for himself (2).

3. David did not kill all the Canaanites (3, 4).

The best course in life is to keep to the covenant of the blood of Jesus. I need to be content in the Lord. I must come to turns at my shortcoming and lay them on Jesus. I need to trust and obey.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 19:8-19

Israel fought two related battles in these verses. Joab leads Israel in the first battle. David leads Israel in the second battle.

David did not go to the battle with the Ammonites, the first battle. He sent Joab out (8.) David did go to the battle with the Arameans, the second battle (17). Why didn’t David stay in Jerusalem leaving the army to Joab in the first battle?

David is king. He exercised his power. David had been fighting wars since as a young lad he walked into the battlefield and slain Goliath. Now he is past middle age in a city he had conquered, in a luxurious home he built, surrounded by his wives, children, and attendants. He had grown tired of constant running and fighting. So when the first thread arose he stayed home.

David only came out of semi-retirement to fight the Arameans in the second battle because when that loose confederation of towns and settlements in what became Syria joined their full force they were as powerful as Israel. They were indeed a serious threat to David’s now comfortable life.

I don’t know of one single person; whether rich or poor, famous or infamous, proud or humble, accomplished or incompetent, male or female, wise or a fool that doesn’t get tired of doing the “same old, same old.” David was tired of going out to fight spring after spring after spring. He was tired of always being on the run.

Routine and good habits are very constructive and important to peace and productivity. A ship that’s anchor is unused ends up embattled and beaten by storms till even only a downpour sinks its tired hull. However, God also designed us to occasionally escape routine, lift the anchor, hoist the schooner, and experience a pleasant distraction or even a short-lived disturbance.

Design good productive habits, but do not neglect to address serious threats to the home.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 19:1-7

David showed kindness to the son of a man he had respected. The man he respected was Nahash king of the Ammonites. Nahash has shown David kindness. David sent a noble delegation to pay his respects when Nahash died (1,2).

Nahash’s son, Hanun did not return the respect with kindness. Instead, he insulted David and David’s friends. He shaved David’s friends, cut off their garments in the middle at the buttocks, and sent them away in shame (4). Then he prepared to go to war against David (6,7).

I have been disrespected several times in my life. At times I have been like David and had my kindness returned with insult and injury. Several emotions spring from insult and disrespect; sadness and anger. Several thoughts spring too; doubt, blame, and confusion. The emotions and thoughts vary depending on who inflicted me with insult and disrespect.

Thoughts and emotions drive reactions and actions. Suppressing responses to insult and disrespect is not wise. That only delays the response and the suppression often results in an improper response.

Jesus taught how to deal with insult and disrespect and the emotions and thoughts that go with them. Jesus said, “If someone stricks you on the cheek, turn to them the other cheek.” So, when I show kindness to someone, and they return the kindness with insult and disrespect, I am to show them kindness. Wow. Lord change my character to be like yours.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 17:1-13

Financial, military, and business success is a gift of God. God has his plans and purposes which are mostly hidden from humans. His ways are hidden by God’s intervention and by our sin and character flaws. God’s plans include a successful streak. Often baffling is who has success and who does not. Still, a wise person will acknowledge God makes a person successful in this season and then not in another.

David did not always have a successful streak. However, during this time he was successful. David defeated the Philistines (1), Moabites (2), Zobahites (3,4) and Arameans -future Syria (5,6), and Zobahites (120 north of Damascus congratulated David and gave him gifts (9,10).

David had dedicated the plunder of war to the Lord. He put them in the treasury of the future temple (11). Solomon later used much of the war plunder to build the temple and its furnishings.

Whether God gives success or not I should acknowledge the hand of God and honor his name. When he blesses with success I will give a portion back to him.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 17:16-22

David was humble. He acknowledged his humble beginnings (16). Humility is knowing and accepting myself; my sullied past, my imperfect character, my infected soul (heart and mind), and my Lord’s mercy and grace in dealing with and purifying me.

David’s humble character was in spite of the fact that he knew that the Lord treated him and loved him in an exalted way (17).

When I ponder myself and my relationship with God I wonder do I truly accept the promises he made to me through Christ? I am jealous of David because of the words he spoke to David here. I am jealous because I want them for myself. And yet through Jesus, I already do have them. So do I believe? Then why am I jealous?

The promises that God makes are not connected to my sullied past, imperfect character, nor my infected soul for Christ has and will deal with me in mercy and grace all the days of my life. When God says through the Spirit, “For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.” (Rom. 8:14) and “Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.” (Rom. 8:17), then I am the same as David. I am under the covenant of Christ.

For more read the commentary at:

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 17:11b-15

The offspring the Lord promised who would succeed David is Jesus. He is the house the Lord built. David had already built himself a fine house made of cedar (1). So the Lord’s promise to build a house for David (10b) is a different kind of house.

The Lord promised to “raise up” David’s succeeding offspring. The Hebrew word for “raise up” is “qum” meaning; arise, lift up, establish, stand, and confirm. It is a primitive root word. The implication in the Lord’s covenant with David is that the offspring will start afresh a new kind of kingdom.

Jesus’ kingdom is also a house (14). Jesus’ father is God (13). Jesus is the son of God (13). Mary’s conception was immaculate. She was a virgin when she conceived Jesus for the Holy Spirit came upon her. Therefore, we can say that Jesus’ physical father was God.

God loves Jesus eternally (13). Jesus is King eternally (14). Jesus’ kingdom is eternal (14). Jesus’ throne is established forever (14). Saul’s throne ended when he died. David’s line of sons who reigned ended. Jesus, the son of David rules forever and his kingdom is unending.

A household had children. A kingdom has subjects. I am in Jesus’ house. I am in Jesus’ kingdom. The Hebrew word “bayit” in verses 10 and 12 is also translated as a temple. The Lord was turning over David’s plans to build the Lord a temple. The Lord would build a temple that one son would build and establish. I am in that household.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 17:7-10

After the Lord corrected and rebuked David and the prophet Nathan (4-6) he turned the tables on David. David had wanted to build a temple (1). The Lord reminded them of everything he had done for David (7). Then he told him his plans.

David was the Lord’s servant, not the other way around (7). The Lord had rescued him from being a nobody shepherd boy. The Lord had made him king. The Lord had always been with David (8). The Lord had removed all of David’s enemies. David was successful not because David was great. David had accomplished only because the Lord had made it so. David was and still is great because the Lord had made it so.

The Lord’s plans had always been for Israel’s benefit (9). The Lord had been keeping his promise to Abraham, the man of faith in the Lord God. The Lord Jesus looked to the future.

Verses 9 and 10 are future tense. In the future, they will have a place. In the future, they will have a home of their own. In the future, they will not be disturbed, In the future, wicked people will not oppress them. In the future, the Lord will subdue Israel’s enemies. That is why David was successful.

I have plans. That is good. However, do my plans match up to the Lord’s? Do my desires and dreams exist in the will of the Lord? Even if my intent is for the benefit of the Lord and others, they may not be in the will of the Lord. Or perhaps they are in the will of the Lord, but my motivation is wrong. I could be like Nathan and believe that the Lord is with me in everything I do and so I can do anything. Such thinking needs the Lord’s rebuke.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 17:1-6

Where does God dwell? David had it wrong. The Ark of the Lord was in a tent in Jerusalem that he had constructed and pitched. (1). David implied that the Lord God was thus living in a tent. Interestingly, Nathan the prophet did not correct him (2).

I can imagine a group of people sitting at a dinner table when David decided it was time to bring up something that was on his mind and in his heart. I believe that building a temple for the Lord had been on David’s mind and in his heart ever since he saw the Philistine temples with their idols in them while he was amongst them when Saul was trying to kill him.

Nathan gave David bad advice. A man of God is not infallible though a few I have had the acquaintance of portrayed the belief that they are. The Lord God enlightened and rebuked both David and Nathan.

“I have not dwelt in a house from the day I brought Israel up out of Egypt to this day,” was the Lord’s excoriation (5). Was the Lord God walking and sitting in the tabernacle and now in David’s tent invisible from our eyes? Was he laying in the Ark of the Lord? Was he the two stone tablets inside the Ark? No to all those silly questions?

The irony is the thought that anything that David would commission to be used to build a temple is but one infinitesimal piece of that which the Lord God created. Does that mean that the Spirit of God cannot be in a tent, a temple, or a person? No. For the Lord told David, “I have moved from one tent site to another…” (5)

When David was in Ziklag located in Philistine territory the Lord God was there too. When David was in Gath, one of their capital cities the Lord God was there too. If David stepped inside the temple of the Philistines idol, the Lord God would have been there too. God was there when David was telling Nathan about his plans to build a temple. God is everywhere. The question really is, do I seek him everywhere?

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 16:37-43

The Lord God thru Moses required the Israelites to establish a place for them to approach him physically and offer sacrifice. He had the ark built and a tent to place the ark in. The Lord thru Moses also established specific people, the men of the Levite tribe to perform the sacrifices and keep up the place where the Israelites were to meet.

David chose one Levite, Asaph to be the high priest (37). He served at the Ark of the Lord in Jerusalem. The high priest lead the other priest and performed a few important specific annual offerings.

David also chose others to work with Asaph (38). David also chose Zadok the priest to serve at the tabernacle at Mount Gibeon not far from Jerusalem until Solomon, David’s son finished the temple in Jerusalem (39-41). The tabernacle of the Lord was a tent where the Israelites were to meet with the Lord.

The work of the Lord is important “for his love endures forever” (42). A daily time to thank God for his enduring love for me is right and good. For me, it is in the morning writing Bible Daily Bread Devotionals. Having a routine and being organized makes doing so easier and more peaceful. Working with others weekly on special occasions like Sundays and other special days is also important.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 16:23-36

David continues his psalm during the first celebration with the Ark of the Lord in Jerusalem.

The glory and majesty of the Lord Jesus and his Father is declared in all the earth (23, 30, 31, 32, 33). The earth trembles before him, the heavens rejoice, the sea resound, the fields jubilate, and the trees and forest sing. Lord open my eyes to see the world you made declare your praise (24).

Jesus is coming to judge the earth (33). For some, there will be salvation (23, 35) They are the ones that joined all creation in declaring the glory and majesty of the Lord (34, 35). They gave thanks to the Lord, for he is good, his eternal love they accepted (34).

For others, there will be wrath and anger. They are the ones who others needed to be saved from (35). They did not declare the glory and majesty of God though they knew the heavens and the earth declared his majesty. They are the ones who rejected the Lord’s salvation and love. The Lord God is to be feard (25).

As I begin this day my soul is trying to decide which attitude to bring throughout the day; sink in bitterness and a disgruntled spirit, or be raised to praise and joy. With his word the life to anchor my soul, I chose to join all the heavens and earth and declare his glory among the nations (23).

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 16:7-22

David starts his psalm with a set of commands – give thanks, call, make known, sing praise, tell, glory in, seek, rejoice, look to, remember – all concerning the Lord. I need to set aside time to do just this. Sunday worship service in physical presence with other believers, such as was done when the temple was dedicated. I also should keep setting aside time in the morning to read and write DB on his word and then meditate.

The Lord God’s judgments are in all the earth (14). Judgments here can also be translated as manner, cause, and ordinance. As I meditate the Spirit can remind me of the Lord’s manner in my life for the last 24 hours. The Lord can remind me and have me ponder what he was doing in and around me. Perhaps there was something I missed, forgot, or understood incorrectly.

The Israelites were reminded of the forever covenant the Lord made with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (15-17). The Lord God kept his promise. They had inherited the land of Canaan (18). When the Lord decreed to promise it seemed a far-fetched fantasy. They were a few outliners (19). They had no home (20). Yet, they believed God. They had incessant belief. The Lord protected Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and his sons.

What plans does he have for me? Worship him and think about his promises to me in the morning, in the early morning. Pray to him with my love before I end the day.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 16:1-6

Bringing the Ark of God to Jerusalem was not a matter of sitting it down and walking away. First, they presented burnt offerings and fellowship offerings before God.

A burnt offering was for sin. It was a somber occasion. The one bringing the offering was to lay a hand upon the animal so as to identify that the animal was taking the person’s place and then to kill it. The one who made this sacrifice did so to restore the relationship with God and to atone for some sin. Burnt offerings were made often.

A fellowship offering (peace offering) showed one’s desire to have fellowship with God. It was a celebration. As with the burnt offering, the individual laid a hand on the animal and killed it. The priest received the breast and the right thigh (Lev. 7:28-36), but the offerer was given much of the meat to have a meal of celebration. Various types of bread were offered and kept by the priest(s).

Jesus is the ultimate burnt and fellowship offering. (Heb. 7:27) He willingly laid down his life in place of animals. Like a burnt offering he is my offering for sin. Like a fellowship offering, he is my access to peace with God and the peace of God. The Lord’s Supper is a remembrance of Jesus’ sacrifice laid down for me. (Matt. 26:26-29)

Second, David ensured that the people had food to eat on their journey back home (3). David took this from his own wealth. A good host ensured his guests are taken care of.

Lastly, David appointed priests to minister before the Ark of the Lord every day. They were to pray, give thanks, and praise the Lord (4). My relationship with Jesus is an ongoing effort on my part. I am to apply effort, time, and heart to daily commune with the Lord. I can sing and play instruments (5). I can set up reminders to minister before the Lord. This is why the priests blew trumpets (6), this is why churches use to ring bells. I can set up reminders in my house, in my car, at my place of employment.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 15

This is also recorded in 2 Samuel 6:1-15.

David knew that the Ark of the Lord that housed the covenant was to be in the capital city of the Lord God’s people. David wanted the symbol of the Lord’s presence to be near him. So a second time he gathered the community together to accomplish the task (1). This time he was going to do it in the way the Lord told Moses it was to be done (2). The Levites were to do it (11). So they had to prepare themselves as the Lord prescribed (12).

One of the things that the Levites were sure to do was to sing and play musical instruments (16, 19). Music has always been and always should be an important part of my worship. The Lord created music. He created men and women with an appreciation for and the ability to express ourselves in melody and rhythm.

During my teenage years, I played percussion; snare drum, drum set, and other instruments. I also occasionally sang. These things I always greatly enjoyed. I have thought of using these talents in a church setting. I was part of a choir for a while. Now after many years, I have accepted the call to use the percussion talent during Sunday service. May the Lord help me do so with the best acceptable form.

Use the below link to read more.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 14

2 Samuel 5:11-26 also records these events.

The Lord God was blessing David in all he did. David inquired before he went to battle with the Philistines (10, 14). “Shall I go and attack…” Though defending one’s territory seems obvious when an enemy attacks David inquired anyway. The Lord was fighting in the battle (15).

I am jealous of David at this point in his life. He was king. He was building a palace. He had wives and children. He was winning battles. Most jealousy of all these is that the Lord God answered his prayers and was fighting with him in battles. Yes, it is true David was not always living like this. Still, I am jealous of David at this time in his life.

Was David living such a life to be jealous of? How did he feel when the Philistines raided the Valley of Rephaim (9) not once but twice (13)? These were the same people he had aligned with around 10 years earlier when he was in exile because of Saul. I suspect David was hurt and shocked. I am not jealous of the attacks that lead to victories.

When things are going well and something bad seems to keep happening need to remember to inquire of the Lord and know that God has a victory in store if I obey him. It must have been just as hard for David to wait under the balsam trees (14) as it is for me to wait for the Lord to begin the fight. Yet he did. So here I am waiting to hear God’s instructions and waiting to hear the sound of marching in the tops of the trees.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 13:1-8

The Ark of God was a symbol of the Lord God’s presentence with the people of Israel. The only thing in this chest-shaped artifact was two stone tablets that had the covenant between the Lord God and Israel carved into them. The people were to inquire of the Lord before the Ark.

David was the king of Israel. He moved to Jerusalem. He loved the Lord God and had inquired of the Lord God often through the high priest of God. He wanted to move the Ark to Jerusalem so the Lord would be close to him. A man of God desires to be with the Lord all the time.

While moving the Ark from Baalah of Judah (Kiriath Jearim) to Jerusalem a man who was not a priest touched the Ark and died 9, 10). He had good intentions. His intentions were not what killed him. Rather, the Lord gave Moses specific instructions on how the Ark was to be moved. David and the Israelites had not followed those instructions.

The Lord God is holy. He is to be honored and awed. He is due respect. David learned the hard way that fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (12). He blesses though who honor him (14). He curses those who dishonor him. The fear of the Lord brings about obedience and blessing.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 12

David and Saul make for a good study in character development. What does God desire our character to be like? What characteristics draw people to one person, and away from another? Both men were chosen by God to rule Israel from a meek beginning. While some characteristics are common in the two, some differences are seen.

One stark difference can be drawn from verse 1. Saul was hunting David down not because David was an enemy of Israel. Truthfully, David was a great asset to Israel and Saul’s reign. No, David was not Israel’s enemy nor was he Saul’s enemy. However, Saul had a misguided belief that David was his enemy.

Saul’s character was focused on self; what was good for Saul. David’s character was focused on others, what was good for Israel. This is why good fighting men deserted Saul and the comfort of home in Israel to join David who lived in the rugged semi-desert city just outside of Israel’s territory in David’s time.

David’s character is seen in the way he dealt with the Benjamites who came to him (16-18). Saul was of the tribe of Benjamin. Naturally, David would be skeptical about the intention of a group of fighting Benjamites arriving at his refuge city. David did the attack them. Nor did he turn them away. Rather, David accepted them trusting that the God of their fathers knew their intentions and would deal with them (17). This took faith in God which strengthens a person’s courage.

The character that God looks for is one that trusts and loves him. A character that does so is one who is after God’s own heart. They want to be like Christ who is the exact representation of God’s being. A character that trusts God overcomes fear with faith. They have peace of mind because their thoughts are not on themselves but on God and others. Do I rely on God, or myself?

Ziklag ruins. Located in the Negev on Israel’s border in David’s time.
Ziklag ruins. Located in the Negev on Israel’s border in David’s time.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 11:10-47

David’s mighty men are also in 2 Samuel 23:8-39.

The Lord had promised David kingship when he was a young teenager. The Lord had promised Israel that he would protect his people with strong support (10). The Lord kept his promise through David.

David did not accomplish and maintain strong support for Israel on his own. He had a group of men appointed as leaders of the army. The leaders of men were assigned based on their ability and courage. None of David’s brothers, cousins or uncles were given special places. When a man proved himself David gave him rank.

A great leader doesn’t need to be skilled in everything. He only needs to have at least one great skill. Recognize the gift, skill, and potential that God gives someone else and place them in the right position so that gift can be used for God’s greater good. David had this skill.

Three of David’s showed great devotion to David (15-19). They risked their lives to bring David a drink of water. David poured it out because he recognized that he is not worthy of such devotion and makes the water a drink offering to the Lord. A great leader does not desire self-glory and adoration. A great leader seeks others to admire the Lord’s glory and gives the Lord adoration.

David was a great leader. Yet, Jesus is the best example of a leader. He appointed others to carry out the work of the gospel. Jesus was subject to God his Father and showed his followers how to respect his Father. He chose twelve and trained them. Each had a skill that was best for a specific task. No two were alike. Jesus also did not show favor to his brothers.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 11:4-9

David concurring Jerusalem is also in 2 Samuel 5:6-16.

When David was crowned king of Israel in the city of Hebron he was starting anew. He had lived in the remote desert city of Ziglak When Saul died he moved to Hebron where Judah make him king of their tribe. Seven years and six months later all Israel make him king. The Lord was enabling David to slowly improve his life (9).

David, the new king of Israel needed a new capital city to rule from. Partly being a military man for many years he decided to take the fortress city Jebus. When the Lord enabled him to achieve it he renamed it Jerusalem (4).

Partly being a man of faith David may have known that Mt. Zion and Mt. Moriah, the mountains this city was on was the location that Abraham in faith offered his son Jacob as a sacrifice to the Lord (though the Lord stopped Abraham). Also, Melchizedek the priest of the Most High God was from the city, then called Salem (Genesis 14:18).

Partly being an administrator David chose Jebus because it was centrally located. David made it easy for the people to come to him and for him to quickly go to any border to defend the nation.

As the Lord enables me to make small improvements in my life I need to ask and answer questions. Will this decision make my life and my family’s life safer? Is this decision good for my relationship with God? Does this decision make practical administrative sense?

Taking the city was not easy (5-6). Yet it was well worth it. This is where God wanted Israel’s capital city to be. This is where the Lord wanted his king to rule from. Most importantly, this is where the Lord would rule his people from.

For more information use the link below to access the commentary for 2 Samuel 5:6-16.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 11:1-3

David became king of all Israel while living in the city of Hebron, the then main city of Judah located south of Jerusalem (1). Yet David’s reign came only after a very hard and troubled life. He had many misfortunes and setbacks.

David was the youngest of many brothers, a runt probably born from an illegitimate conception. His brothers and his parents thought little of him giving him the most unwanted family job, watching sheep. (1 Samuel 16:1-3)

When Israel went to war he was not sent while his older brothers were because his family didn’t think much of his abilities. (1 Samuel 17:14, 28) After David become a successful warrior Saul, the king of Israel tried repeatedly to kill him. David eventually had to go into exile and live in caves and the shabby desert town Ziklag. Ziklag was outside Israeli territory. (1 Samuel 27:6)

Year and year David had to struggle to find food and shelter. He lived a miserable life for most of his life before he became king of Israel. Through all this, David did not lose faith in God. He prayed continually and wrote many now-famous psalms. The subject of his psalms concerned the Lord and his trust in God. David through hardship grew in faith and in character.

No matter year and year when life is filled with misfortunes and setbacks I should be only concerned that my master asks me every day, “Did you live true to your conscience today. Did you act in the character of Christ?”

David was crowned king in Hebron located in Judah is recorded in 2 Samuel 2:1-4. Only Judah crowned him at that time. He was king in Hebron for seven years and six months. David’s second crowning is recorded in 2 Samuel 5:1-5 and here in 1 Chronicles 11. The second crowning was when all Israel attended, making him king of all Israel.

BDBD is 1 Chronicles 10

1 Samuel 13 also records Saul’s death.

Saul had been called from ordinary life to be the first king of Israel. The only extraordinary attribute he had was that he was taller than most. He was not a man of faith. He was the type of man Israel wanted when they asked the Lord to give them a king like the other nations.

Saul was unfaithful to the Lord (13). He did not keep the word of the Lord (13). He did whatever he believed was best for himself. From a human point of view, he was successful. Yet his character shortcomings led him to pursue unwise things.

Saul did not pray (14). He did not seek the Lord. He even consulted a medium for guidance (13; 1 Sam. 28:3-15). His lack of faith and trust in the Lord led to his suicide (4).

Life gets hard often. There are times that all looks so unbearable. It seems waves of despair and disaster endlessly pound on us like waves coming to a hurricane beach. We feel worthless. We give want to give up. It is times like these that a soul’s character is tested. Will I trust God? Will I believe in his grace and mercy? Will I do the right thing? Saul did not do the right thing because he relied on himself. He had not made himself a custom to seeking God in all situations, whether bad or good. When tested he sank in his self-reliance.

BDBD is Titus 3:12-15

Paul was going to winter in Nicopolis, the capital city of the Roman providence Epirus in northwest Greece. It has beautiful views of the Ionian Sea and mountains. The weather is pleasant in the winter with highs approaching 70 F and lows in the mid-40s F. Apparently, a Christian community was in existence in the city. (See picture of ancient Analipsis church ruins and Nicopolis Greece.)

Paul urged Titus to visit him. Paul sent Zenas the lawyer and Apollos to Titus, perhaps to fill the pastor seat when Titus would be visiting Paul. There is nothing wrong with enjoying all good things for they come from God. If he provides a way to enjoy the sea and mountains I can enjoy them with him and his friends.

Analipsis Greece church ruins
Nicopolis Greece

BDBD is Titus 3:9-11

Paul warns the same thing to Titus as he is about to warn in his last letter to Timothy. “Avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, arguments, and quarrels about the law.” (9). Why? “Because these are unprofitable and useless.” (9) I suppose there is a place for everything under the sun. Still, constructive conversations very quickly turn into quarrels and arguments thus becoming useless.

Three people find an interesting shaped rock in the ground. One says it was carved by an ancient artist and thus is invaluable. Another says it was formed by rolling under an ancient ice glacier and thus is worthless. The third says it was formed by being in the nearby fast-flowing river for many centuries. The experts debate the issue bringing up all kinds of interesting facts and statistics till angry words are exchanged and punches are thrown.

Several days later a fourth person enters the scene. He picks up the rock and says, “I believe we found the murder weapon. These three perpetrators beat each other with this bloody rock.” The moral of the story is, sometimes it is best to leave our ego in the ground.

BDBD is Titus 3:5b-8

During the ages before Penticost priests, kings, and prophets usually had oil poured over their heads symbolizing that God was going to use that person for a specific purpose. It was a visible way to show them and everyone else that God was entering into a close relationship. God would enter that person. The person would have special gifts and insights into God. Those gifts were used to help others.

Now, starting at Pentecost with those who heard Peter preach and believed the gospel, God saves through the washing of rebirth and review by the Holy Spirit (5b). The Holy Spirit pours into those who believe in Jesus Christ our Savior (6). We become heirs having the hope of eternal life. We are anointed with the Holy Spirit.

God gives gifts. He calls, He anoints with the Spirit. He makes his people priests, kings, and prophets. All this is grace. My response is to be careful to devote myself to doing what is good (8).

BDBD is Titus 3:3-5

The good news (gospel) is presented simply and clearly in these verses. God saved me from my evil state of being (4,5). I did nothing to deserve this mercy. God is just that way. He is kind and loving. He wants to and does forgive sin. God is just simply so good that in spite of all that I had done he decided to forgive me. For this, I am ever grateful.

What other people think of me cannot change the grace of God to me. If what I did in the past did not keep God’s grace from me, then nothing can. If by grace God saved me, then what can be done to me and by me that will change my state? Nothing. For this, I am ever grateful.

The Holy Spirit in power created all the heavens and earth. Since he is that powerful, he has all the ability to clean the mess I made and will ever make. Nothing is impossible for God. He decides and it happens. The power that raised Jesus from the dead raised my dead sinful self into new life. For this, I am ever grateful.

BDBD is Titus 3:1-2

Paul was in a terrible Roman prison, probably the worse one he had been in. Nero had burned Rome and blamed the Christians which gave anyone in the empire the state-sanctioned right to persecute Christians. Many were imprisoned without cause and sent to be executed. Yet here Paul is telling Titus, a preacher to remind the congregation to be subject to rulers and authorities (1).

Jesus’ way is different than the world’s way. Jesus’ way is obedience to authority and to be ready to do whatever is good (1). Jesus said that when someone slaps me on one cheek I am to turn the other to them. Jesus taught me that if someone takes my coat I am to not withhold my shirt from them. (Luke 6:29)

How can anyone obey this? Trusting obedience takes faith in God. Faith that he will keep me and that a better eternal future awaits in paradise to those who live by faith according to his way. Faith that he will keep his promise, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matt. 6:33)

When thrown in a Roman prison I am to remain peaceable and considerate (2). Yes, Rome is gone. Yet authority over me always exists. And this world’s authority is corrupt. Many follow the ways of “The Prince” written by Niccolò Machiavelli.

BDBD is Titus 2:11-15

Self-control is the ability to regulate one’s emotions, thoughts, desires, and behavior especially when confronted with temptations and impulses. Self-control is how we direct ourselves. There are several types of self-control including perceived control, cognitive control, emotional control, motivational control, desire control, inhibitory control, social control, ego control, effort control, etc. Self-control and will are linked. How much I control myself depends on how much willpower I have.

An example of self-control is when I want to lose weight and gain muscle mass. Doing this involves controlling what and how much I eat and when and how long I exercise. Resisting the temptation to eat free donuts at work starts with the will to keep to my plan to lose weight. If my will is strong I will resist thoughts of imagining the experience of eating donuts, suppress the emotion of anticipation, remind myself of my goals, and walk away and forget the donuts are there. Exercise donut self-control enough leads to diminished donut temptation’s power to break my will.

Self-control is learned (12). It is a core body function that can be strengthened with use just like muscles are strengthened. Salvation from the weak will and weak self-control is a gracious gift of God through the Holy Spirit (11). The Holy Spirit teaches us to say “No” (12).

God’s concern is with character for it is where the core body functions reside. God enables and educates me so that my character is like Jesus’. As I mature in Christ my will and self-control are strengthened so I can say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions. God develops me so that I can live a self-controlled, upright, and godly life in this present age (12). I am redeemed and being redeemed for all self-wickedness (14). I am purified (14). One item that is purified in me through the Spirit is self-control.

BDBD is Titus 2:9-10

The word slave is often in the Bible, sometimes in the context of the life position. Paul addresses people in slavery in many letters; 1 Cor. 7, Gal. 3, Eph. 6, Col. 3, and Phm. 1. Peter addressed slaves in 1 Pet. 2. The early church surely consisted of a large number of slaves.

The Bible’s main focus is not a person’s position in life. Rather, the Bible’s focus is a person’s conduct while in the position. Ethics and morality are the focus no matter the occupation and social position. Why? Because God orchestrates life events and opportunities, we orchestrate our response to them. The freedom of choice is to peacefully accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and thank God for the wisdom to know the difference.

God expects a slave’s response to accept the fact that they are subject to their master in everything, to try to please them, to not talk back to them (9). What should be the response if a master instructs a slave to violate God’s law? A slave, like all, must recognize that the Lord Jesus is the master of all. Joseph, when asked by his master’s beautiful wife to have sex with her refused and ran away. He obeyed the master of eternity, rather than the master of impermanence.