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2 Chronicles 6 New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

Then Solomon said, “Lord, you have said you would live in a dark cloud. I’ve built a beautiful temple for you. You can live in it forever.”

The whole community of Israel was standing there. The king turned around and gave them his blessing. Then he said,

“I praise the Lord. He is the God of Israel. With his mouth he made a promise to my father David. With his powerful hands he made it come true. He said, ‘I brought my people out of Egypt. Since then, a temple for my Name has not been built. I have not chosen a city in any tribe of Israel for that purpose. And I have not chosen anyone to be ruler over my people Israel. But now I have chosen Jerusalem. I will put my Name there. And I have chosen David to rule over my people Israel.’

“With all his heart my father David wanted to build a temple. He wanted to do it so the Name of the Lord could be there. The Lord is the God of Israel. But the Lord spoke to my father David. He said, ‘With all your heart you wanted to build a temple for my Name. It is good that you wanted to do that. But you will not build the temple. Instead, your son will build the temple for my Name. He is your own flesh and blood.’

10 “The Lord has kept the promise he made. I’ve become the next king after my father David. Now I’m sitting on the throne of Israel. That’s exactly what the Lord promised would happen. I’ve built the temple for the Name of the Lord. He is the God of Israel. 11 I’ve placed the ark there. The tablets of the Lord’s covenant are inside it. He made that covenant with the people of Israel.”

Solomon Prays to Set the Temple Apart to the Lord

12 Then Solomon stood in front of the Lord’s altar. He stood in front of the whole community of Israel. He spread out his hands to pray. 13 He had made a bronze stage. It was seven and a half feet long and seven and a half feet wide. It was four and a half feet high. He had placed it in the center of the outer courtyard. He stood on the stage. Then he got down on his knees in front of the whole community of Israel. He spread out his hands toward heaven. 14 He said,

Lord, you are the God of Israel. There is no God like you in heaven or on earth. You keep the covenant you made with us. You show us your love. You do that when we follow you with all our hearts. 15 You have kept your promise to my father David. He was your servant. With your mouth you made a promise. With your powerful hand you have made it come true. And today we can see it.

16 Lord, you are the God of Israel. Keep the promises you made to my father David. Do it for him. He was your servant. You said to him, ‘You will always have a son from your family line to sit on Israel’s throne. He will sit in front of the Most Holy Room, where my own throne is. That will be true only if your children after you are careful in everything they do. They must live the way my law tells them to. That is the way you have lived.’ 17 Lord, you are the God of Israel. So let your promise to your servant David come true.

18 “But will God really live on earth with human beings? After all, the heavens can’t hold you. In fact, even the highest heavens can’t hold you. So this temple I’ve built certainly can’t hold you! 19 But please pay attention to my prayer. Lord my God, be ready to help me as I make my appeal to you. Listen to my cry for help. Hear the prayer I’m praying to you. 20 Let your eyes look toward this temple day and night. You said you would put your Name here. Listen to the prayer I’m praying toward this place. 21 Hear me when I ask you to help us. Listen to your people Israel when they pray toward this place. Listen to us from heaven. It’s the place where you live. When you hear us, forgive us.

22 “Suppose someone does something wrong to their neighbor. And the person who has done something wrong is required to give their word. They must tell the truth about what they have done. They must come and do it in front of your altar in this temple. 23 When they do, listen to them from heaven. Take action. Judge between the person and their neighbor. Pay back the guilty one. Do to them what they have done to their neighbor. Deal with the one who isn’t guilty in a way that shows they are free from blame. That will prove they aren’t guilty.

24 “Suppose your people Israel have lost the battle against their enemies. And suppose they’ve sinned against you. But they turn back to you and praise your name. They pray to you in this temple. And they ask you to help them. 25 Then listen to them from heaven. Forgive the sin of your people Israel. Bring them back to the land you gave to them and their people who lived long ago.

26 “Suppose your people have sinned against you. And because of that, the sky is closed up and there isn’t any rain. But your people pray toward this place. They praise you by admitting they’ve sinned. And they turn away from their sin because you have made them suffer. 27 Then listen to them from heaven. Forgive the sin of your people Israel. Teach them the right way to live. Send rain on the land you gave them as their share.

28 “Suppose there isn’t enough food in the land. And a plague strikes the land. The hot winds completely dry up our crops. Or locusts or grasshoppers come and eat them up. Or enemies surround one of our cities and get ready to attack it. Or trouble or sickness comes. 29 But suppose one of your people prays to you. They ask you to help them. They are aware of how much they are suffering. And they spread out their hands toward this temple to pray. 30 Then listen to them from heaven. It’s the place where you live. Forgive them. Deal with everyone in keeping with everything they do. You know their hearts. In fact, you are the only one who knows every human heart. 31 Your people will have respect for you. They will live the way you want them to. They’ll live that way as long as they are in the land you gave our people long ago.

32 “Suppose an outsider who doesn’t belong to your people Israel has come from a land far away. They have come because they’ve heard about your great name. They have heard that you reached out your mighty hand and powerful arm. So they come and pray toward this temple. 33 Then listen to them from heaven. It’s the place where you live. Do what that outsider asks you to do. Then all the nations on earth will know you. They will have respect for you. They’ll respect you just as your own people Israel do. They’ll know that your Name is in this house I’ve built.

34 “Suppose your people go to war against their enemies. It doesn’t matter where you send them. And suppose they pray to you toward this city you have chosen. They pray toward the temple I’ve built for your Name. 35 Then listen to them from heaven. Listen to their prayer. Listen to them when they ask you to help them. Stand up for them.

36 “Suppose they sin against you. After all, there isn’t anyone who doesn’t sin. And suppose you get angry with them. You hand them over to their enemies. They take them as prisoners to another land. It doesn’t matter whether that land is near or far away. 37 But suppose your people change their ways in the land where they are held as prisoners. They turn away from their sins. They beg you to help them in the land where they are prisoners. They say, ‘We have sinned. We’ve done what is wrong. We’ve done what is evil.’ 38 And they turn back to you with all their heart and soul. Suppose it happens in the land where they were taken as prisoners. There they pray toward the land you gave their people long ago. They pray toward the city you have chosen. And they pray toward the temple I’ve built for your Name. 39 Then listen to them from heaven. It’s the place where you live. Listen to their prayer. Listen to them when they ask you to help them. Stand up for them. Your people have sinned against you. Please forgive them.

40 “My God, let your eyes see us. Let your ears pay attention to the prayers offered in this place.

41 Lord God, rise up and come to your resting place.
    Come in together with the ark.
    It’s the sign of your power.
Lord God, may your priests put on salvation as if it were their clothes.
    May your faithful people be glad because you are so good.
42 Lord God, don’t turn your back on your anointed king.
    Remember the great love you promised to your servant David.”

New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

Copyright © 1995, 1996, 1998, 2014 by Biblica, Inc.®. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

2 Chronicles 6 New International Version (NIV)

Then Solomon said, “The Lord has said that he would dwell in a dark cloud; I have built a magnificent temple for you, a place for you to dwell forever.

While the whole assembly of Israel was standing there, the king turned around and blessed them. Then he said:

“Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, who with his hands has fulfilled what he promised with his mouth to my father David. For he said, ‘Since the day I brought my people out of Egypt, I have not chosen a city in any tribe of Israel to have a temple built so that my Name might be there, nor have I chosen anyone to be ruler over my people Israel. But now I have chosen Jerusalem for my Name to be there, and I have chosen David to rule my people Israel.’

“My father David had it in his heart to build a temple for the Name of the Lord, the God of Israel. But the Lord said to my father David, ‘You did well to have it in your heart to build a temple for my Name. Nevertheless, you are not the one to build the temple, but your son, your own flesh and blood—he is the one who will build the temple for my Name.’

10 “The Lord has kept the promise he made. I have succeeded David my father and now I sit on the throne of Israel, just as the Lord promised, and I have built the temple for the Name of the Lord, the God of Israel. 11 There I have placed the ark, in which is the covenant of the Lord that he made with the people of Israel.”

Solomon’s Prayer of Dedication

12 Then Solomon stood before the altar of the Lord in front of the whole assembly of Israel and spread out his hands. 13 Now he had made a bronze platform, five cubits long, five cubits wide and three cubits high,[a] and had placed it in the center of the outer court. He stood on the platform and then knelt down before the whole assembly of Israel and spread out his hands toward heaven. 14 He said:

Lord, the God of Israel, there is no God like you in heaven or on earth—you who keep your covenant of love with your servants who continue wholeheartedly in your way. 15 You have kept your promise to your servant David my father; with your mouth you have promised and with your hand you have fulfilled it—as it is today.

16 “Now, Lord, the God of Israel, keep for your servant David my father the promises you made to him when you said, ‘You shall never fail to have a successor to sit before me on the throne of Israel, if only your descendants are careful in all they do to walk before me according to my law, as you have done.’ 17 And now, Lord, the God of Israel, let your word that you promised your servant David come true.

18 “But will God really dwell on earth with humans? The heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain you. How much less this temple I have built! 19 Yet, Lord my God, give attention to your servant’s prayer and his plea for mercy. Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence. 20 May your eyes be open toward this temple day and night, this place of which you said you would put your Name there. May you hear the prayer your servant prays toward this place. 21 Hear the supplications of your servant and of your people Israel when they pray toward this place. Hear from heaven, your dwelling place; and when you hear, forgive.

22 “When anyone wrongs their neighbor and is required to take an oath and they come and swear the oath before your altar in this temple, 23 then hear from heaven and act. Judge between your servants, condemning the guilty and bringing down on their heads what they have done, and vindicating the innocent by treating them in accordance with their innocence.

24 “When your people Israel have been defeated by an enemy because they have sinned against you and when they turn back and give praise to your name, praying and making supplication before you in this temple, 25 then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of your people Israel and bring them back to the land you gave to them and their ancestors.

26 “When the heavens are shut up and there is no rain because your people have sinned against you, and when they pray toward this place and give praise to your name and turn from their sin because you have afflicted them, 27 then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of your servants, your people Israel. Teach them the right way to live, and send rain on the land you gave your people for an inheritance.

28 “When famine or plague comes to the land, or blight or mildew, locusts or grasshoppers, or when enemies besiege them in any of their cities, whatever disaster or disease may come, 29 and when a prayer or plea is made by anyone among your people Israel—being aware of their afflictions and pains, and spreading out their hands toward this temple— 30 then hear from heaven, your dwelling place. Forgive, and deal with everyone according to all they do, since you know their hearts (for you alone know the human heart), 31 so that they will fear you and walk in obedience to you all the time they live in the land you gave our ancestors.

32 “As for the foreigner who does not belong to your people Israel but has come from a distant land because of your great name and your mighty hand and your outstretched arm—when they come and pray toward this temple, 33 then hear from heaven, your dwelling place. Do whatever the foreigner asks of you, so that all the peoples of the earth may know your name and fear you, as do your own people Israel, and may know that this house I have built bears your Name.

34 “When your people go to war against their enemies, wherever you send them, and when they pray to you toward this city you have chosen and the temple I have built for your Name, 35 then hear from heaven their prayer and their plea, and uphold their cause.

36 “When they sin against you—for there is no one who does not sin—and you become angry with them and give them over to the enemy, who takes them captive to a land far away or near; 37 and if they have a change of heart in the land where they are held captive, and repent and plead with you in the land of their captivity and say, ‘We have sinned, we have done wrong and acted wickedly’; 38 and if they turn back to you with all their heart and soul in the land of their captivity where they were taken, and pray toward the land you gave their ancestors, toward the city you have chosen and toward the temple I have built for your Name; 39 then from heaven, your dwelling place, hear their prayer and their pleas, and uphold their cause. And forgive your people, who have sinned against you.

40 “Now, my God, may your eyes be open and your ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place.

41 “Now arise, Lord God, and come to your resting place,
    you and the ark of your might.
May your priests, Lord God, be clothed with salvation,
    may your faithful people rejoice in your goodness.
42 Lord God, do not reject your anointed one.
    Remember the great love promised to David your servant.”

Footnotes:

  1. 2 Chronicles 6:13 That is, about 7 1/2 feet long and wide and 4 1/2 feet high or about 2.3 meters long and wide and 1.4 meters high
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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