I have built a magnificent temple for you, a place for you to dwell forever.(A)

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(B) for my Name(C) to be there, and I have chosen David(D) to rule my people Israel.’

“My father David had it in his heart(E) 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(F) of the Lord that he made with the people of Israel.”

Solomon’s Prayer of Dedication(G)(H)

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,(I) 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(J) 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(K) in heaven or on earth—you who keep your covenant of love(L) 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(M) 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(N) 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,(O) 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(P) on earth with humans? The heavens,(Q) 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(R) be open toward this temple day and night, this place of which you said you would put your Name(S) there. May you hear(T) 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.(U)

22 “When anyone wrongs their neighbor and is required to take an oath(V) 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(W) 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(X) 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(Y) 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(Z) 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(AA) 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,(AB) and deal with everyone according to all they do, since you know their hearts (for you alone know the human heart),(AC) 31 so that they will fear you(AD) 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(AE) from a distant land because of your great name and your mighty hand(AF) and your outstretched arm—when they come and pray toward this temple, 33 then hear from heaven, your dwelling place. Do whatever the foreigner(AG) 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,(AH) wherever you send them, and when they pray(AI) 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(AJ)—and you become angry with them and give them over to the enemy, who takes them captive(AK) to a land far away or near; 37 and if they have a change of heart(AL) 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(AM) your people, who have sinned against you.

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

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

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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

The prophecy(A) that Habakkuk the prophet received.

Habakkuk’s Complaint

How long,(B) Lord, must I call for help,
    but you do not listen?(C)
Or cry out to you, “Violence!”
    but you do not save?(D)
Why do you make me look at injustice?
    Why do you tolerate(E) wrongdoing?(F)
Destruction and violence(G) are before me;
    there is strife,(H) and conflict abounds.
Therefore the law(I) is paralyzed,
    and justice never prevails.
The wicked hem in the righteous,
    so that justice(J) is perverted.(K)

The Lord’s Answer

“Look at the nations and watch—
    and be utterly amazed.(L)
For I am going to do something in your days
    that you would not believe,
    even if you were told.(M)
I am raising up the Babylonians,[a](N)
    that ruthless and impetuous people,
who sweep across the whole earth(O)
    to seize dwellings not their own.(P)
They are a feared and dreaded people;(Q)
    they are a law to themselves
    and promote their own honor.
Their horses are swifter(R) than leopards,
    fiercer than wolves(S) at dusk.
Their cavalry gallops headlong;
    their horsemen come from afar.
They fly like an eagle swooping to devour;
    they all come intent on violence.
Their hordes[b] advance like a desert wind
    and gather prisoners(T) like sand.
10 They mock kings
    and scoff at rulers.(U)
They laugh at all fortified cities;
    by building earthen ramps(V) they capture them.
11 Then they sweep past like the wind(W) and go on—
    guilty people, whose own strength is their god.”(X)

Habakkuk’s Second Complaint

12 Lord, are you not from everlasting?(Y)
    My God, my Holy One,(Z) you[c] will never die.(AA)
You, Lord, have appointed(AB) them to execute judgment;
    you, my Rock,(AC) have ordained them to punish.
13 Your eyes are too pure(AD) to look on evil;
    you cannot tolerate wrongdoing.(AE)
Why then do you tolerate(AF) the treacherous?(AG)
    Why are you silent while the wicked
    swallow up those more righteous than themselves?(AH)
14 You have made people like the fish in the sea,
    like the sea creatures that have no ruler.
15 The wicked(AI) foe pulls all of them up with hooks,(AJ)
    he catches them in his net,(AK)
he gathers them up in his dragnet;
    and so he rejoices and is glad.
16 Therefore he sacrifices to his net
    and burns incense(AL) to his dragnet,
for by his net he lives in luxury
    and enjoys the choicest food.
17 Is he to keep on emptying his net,
    destroying nations without mercy?(AM)

Footnotes

  1. Habakkuk 1:6 Or Chaldeans
  2. Habakkuk 1:9 The meaning of the Hebrew for this word is uncertain.
  3. Habakkuk 1:12 An ancient Hebrew scribal tradition; Masoretic Text we