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Dedicating the Temple

Then Solomon assembled the elders of Israel—all the heads of the tribes and the ancestral chieftains of the children of Israel—to King Solomon in Jerusalem, to bring the ark of the covenant of Adonai up from the city of David, which is Zion. All the men of Israel assembled themselves to King Solomon at the Feast in the month of Ethanim, which is the seventh month. Then all the elders of Israel came and the kohanim brought up the ark. They brought up the ark of Adonai, the Tent of Meeting and all the holy vessels that were in the Tent the kohanim and the Levites brought them up.

Now King Solomon—and all the congregation of Israel who were assembled to him—were with him before the ark sacrificing so many sheep and oxen that they could not be numbered or counted. The kohanim brought the ark of the covenant of Adonai to its place, into the inner Sanctuary of the House, to the Holy of Holies, under the wings of the cheruvim. For the cheruvim spread out their wings over the place of the ark, and the cheruvim covered the ark and its poles from above. But the poles were so long that the ends of the poles were seen from the Holy Place before the inner Sanctuary, but they could not be seen outside; there they are to this day. Nothing was in the ark except the two tables of stone that Moses put there at Horeb,[a] when Adonai cut a covenant with the children of Israel when they came out of the land of Egypt.

10 Now when the kohanim came out of the Holy Place, the cloud filled the House of Adonai, 11 so that the kohanim could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of Adonai filled the House of Adonai. 12 Then Solomon spoke: “Adonai said that He would dwell in the thick cloud. 13 I have surely built You a magnificent House, a place for Your dwelling forever.”

14 Then the king turned his face about and blessed the whole congregation of Israel while the whole congregation of Israel was standing. 15 He said: “Blessed be Adonai, the God of Israel, who spoke with His mouth to my father David, and has fulfilled it by His hand, saying: 16 ‘Since the day I brought My people Israel out from Egypt, I have not chosen a city out of all the tribes of Israel to build a House where My Name would be there. But I have chosen David to be over My people Israel.’

17 “Now it was in the heart of my father David to build a House for the Name of Adonai, the God of Israel. 18 But Adonai said to my father David: ‘Because it was in your heart to build a House for My Name, you did well that it was in your heart. 19 Nevertheless you will not build the House, but your son who will come out of your loins, he shall build the House for My Name.’ 20 Now Adonai has fulfilled His word that He spoke, for I have risen in the place of my father David and sit on the throne of Israel, as Adonai promised. Also I have built the House for the Name of Adonai, the God of Israel, 21 and have set there a place for the ark, in which is the covenant of Adonai, which He made with our fathers, when He brought them out of the land of Egypt.”

22 Then Solomon stood before the altar of Adonai in the presence of all the congregation of Israel, spread out his hands toward heaven, 23 and said: “Adonai, God of Israel, there is no God like You, in heaven above or on earth below, keeping covenant and lovingkindness to Your servants who walk before You with all their heart.

24 “You have kept what You promised with Your servant David my father. Yes, You spoke with Your mouth and fulfilled it with Your hand, as it is this day.

25 “Now therefore, Adonai, God of Israel, keep with Your servant David my father what You have promised him, saying: ‘You shall not lack a man to sit before Me on the throne of Israel, if only your children watch their way, walking before Me as you have walked before Me.’ 26 Now therefore, God of Israel, please, let Your word be confirmed, which You spoke to Your servant my father David. 27 So will God really dwell on the earth? Behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You![b] How much less this House that I have built! 28 Nevertheless, turn to the prayer of Your servant and to his supplication, Adonai my God, to listen to the cry and to the prayer which Your servant prays before You this day. 29 Let Your eyes be open toward this House night and day, toward the place of which You have said: ‘My Name shall be there;’ listening to the prayer which Your servant shall pray toward this place.

30 “So listen to the supplication of Your servant and of Your people Israel, when they pray toward this place. Hear in heaven Your dwelling place, and when You hear, forgive! 31 If a man sins against his neighbor and is made to take an oath, then comes and swears before Your altar in this House, 32 then hear from heaven and act and judge Your servants, condemning the wicked, bringing his way on his own head, and justifying the righteous, giving him according to his righteousness.

33 “When Your people Israel are defeated before an enemy, because they have sinned against You, if they turn back to You and confess Your Name and pray and make supplication to You in this House, 34 then hear from heaven, and forgive the sin of Your people Israel, and bring them back to the land which You gave to their fathers.

35 “When the skies are shut up and there is no rain because they have sinned against You, yet if they pray toward this place and confess Your Name and turn from their sin because You have afflicted them, 36 then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of Your servants and Your people Israel. Teach them the good way in which they should walk, and send rain on Your land which You gave to Your people as an inheritance.

37 “If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence, if there be blight or mildew, locust or caterpillar, if their enemy should besiege them in the land of their cities, whatever plague or sickness, 38 when prayer or supplication is made by anyone or by all Your people Israel—each knowing the plague of his own heart—when one spreads his hands toward this House, 39 then may you hear from heaven, Your dwelling place, forgive and act, and give to each man according to all his ways, as You know his heart to be. For You alone know the hearts of all the children of men. [c] 40 Then they will fear You all the days that they live in the land that You gave to our fathers.

41 “Moreover concerning the foreigner who is not of Your people Israel, when he comes from a distant country because of Your Name— 42 for they will hear of Your great Name, of Your mighty hand and Your outstretched arm—when he comes to pray toward this House, 43 then may you hear from heaven Your dwelling place, and do according to all that the foreigner asks of You. So all the peoples of the earth may know Your Name, to fear You as Your people Israel do, and know that this House that I have built is called by Your Name.

44 “When Your people go out to battle against their enemy, by whatever way You send them, and they pray to Adonai toward the city which You have chosen and toward the House which I have built for Your Name, 45 then hear from heaven their prayer and their supplication, and maintain their cause. 46 If they sin against You—for there is no man that does not sin[d]—and You become angry with them and deliver them to the enemy, and their captors carry them away captive to the land of the enemy, far off or near, 47 yet if they take it to the heart in the land which they have been carried captive, and they repent and make supplication to You in the land of their captors, saying: ‘We have sinned, we have committed iniquity, we have acted wickedly,’ 48 and they return to You with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their enemies who carried them into exile, and pray to You toward their land that You gave to their fathers, the city that You have chosen and the House which I have built for Your Name, 49 then hear their prayer and their supplication in heaven Your dwelling place, maintain their cause, 50 and forgive Your people who have sinned against You as well as all their transgressions they have transgressed against You, and grant them mercy before their captors, so they may have mercy on them. 51 For they are Your people and Your inheritance that You brought out of Egypt, out of the middle of the iron furnace.

52 “May Your eyes be open to the supplication of Your servant and to the supplication of Your people Israel, listening to them whenever they cry to You. 53 For You have set them apart from among all the peoples of the earth to be Your inheritance, as You spoke by the hand of Moses Your servant, when You brought our fathers out of Egypt, my Lord Adonai.”

54 When Solomon finished praying this entire prayer and petition to Adonai, he arose from before the altar of Adonai, from kneeling on his knees with his hands spread out toward heaven. 55 Then he stood and blessed all the congregation of Israel with a loud voice, saying: 56 “Blessed be Adonai who has given rest to His people Israel, according to all that He promised. Not a single word has failed of all His good promise, which He promised by the hand of Moses His servant. 57 May Adonai Eloheinu be with us as He was with our fathers. May He not leave us nor forsake us. [e] 58 May He incline our hearts to Him, to walk in all His ways and to keep His mitzvot, His statutes and His ordinances, which He commanded our fathers. 59 May these words of mine, with which I have made supplication before Adonai, be near Adonai Eloheinu day and night, so that He may maintain the cause of His servant and the cause of His people Israel, as each day requires. 60 May all the peoples of the earth know that Adonai, He is God, there is no other! 61 Let your heart, therefore, be wholly devoted to Adonai Eloheinu, to walk in His statutes and to keep His commandments, as it is today.”

62 Now the king and all Israel with him offered sacrifice before Adonai. 63 Solomon offered a sacrifice of fellowship offerings to Adonai: 22,000 oxen and 120,000 sheep. So the king and all the children of Israel dedicated the House of Adonai. 64 On that same day, the king consecrated the middle of the court that was before the House of Adonai, for there he offered the burnt offering and the grain offering and the fat of the fellowship offerings, because the bronze altar that was before Adonai was too small to accommodate the burnt offering, the grain offering and the fat of the fellowship offerings.

65 So Solomon and all Israel with him celebrated the Festival at that time—a great congregation from the entrance of Hamath to the Wadi of Egypt—before Adonai Eloheinu, seven days and then seven more days—14 days in all. 66 On the eighth day he sent the people away, and they blessed the king and went to their tents joyful and glad of heart over all the goodness that Adonai had shown to His servant David and to His people Israel.