A House for the Most High
“‘The house that I am to build will be great, for our God is greater than all gods. But who is able to build him a house, since heaven, even highest heaven, cannot contain him?’” (2 Chronicles 2:5-6a).
Almost as soon as Solomon ascended to the throne of his father, he began work on the temple. David had passed this task down to him, providing him with almost everything he would need to begin immediately. Solomon had only to acquire a few more materials and organize his labor force. This was such a priority for him that he had the foundation laid by the third year of his reign, and the building was completed by the seventh year. It was a glorious construction, made only from the finest woods and most precious metals.
Yet Solomon was aware that not even this awe-inspiring building was truly worthy of the Most High God. In a letter to the king of Tyre asking for wood to build the temple, Solomon expressed this reality. This house for God would be great, greater than any other similar building, because the God of Israel is greater than any other god. Its magnificence would reflect that reality. But even it would pale in comparison to the actual majesty of God. Solomon marveled at this fact in his letter, exclaiming that not even the highest heaven is wide enough to house the LORD. How then would He dwell in a man-made structure?
Solomon understood that he was far too small to make a house for God, but he was determined to make the temple as beautiful as possible. It was to be an expression of worship for this mighty God. He would spare no expense on this structure, because he wanted all the nations to know that the God of Israel is the Most High, worthy of everything he could give Him. This house for offerings would be an offering in itself.