1 Kings 8:22-40

Aug 10, 2022    Pastor Daryl Zachman
“May you hear the humble and earnest requests from me and your people Israel when we pray toward this place. Yes, hear us from heaven where you live, and when you hear, forgive.” (1 Kings 8:30, NLT)

One of the best Bible studies we can do is to examine the prayers that God answered. This teaches us how to pray more effectively. Solomon’s prayer of dedication after the completion of the temple is such a prayer. God had promised David that he would never fail to have a descendant sitting on the throne if they were careful to walk before Him as David had done. Solomon now prayed that this word would come true.

Solomon also prayed that the LORD would hear the prayers made before Him at this temple and that He would forgive. Solomon described a number of scenarios that could occur to cause people to seek the LORD. Two people could be in a dispute, requiring God to render a verdict to condemn the guilty and justify the innocent. The people could sin against God causing their enemy to defeat them or the rain to stop falling. God could also send a plague, mildew, locusts or grasshoppers. In any of these situations, Solomon prayed that if the people would pray toward this temple, confess the name of Yahweh, and turn from their sin, that God would hear from heaven and forgive their sin. Finally, Solomon prayed that God would give to each person according to his ways so that they would learn to fear the LORD all their days.

We will see that God answered this prayer, promising to do what Solomon asked. Clearly, it was what the LORD wanted to do.

If God would answer prayers for people who merely prayed toward the earthly temple, then how much more will He answer the prayers we make in Jesus’ name toward the heavenly temple. The people then had to stand at a distance, because they could not enter the Most Holy Place where God dwelt. But through the blood of Jesus Christ, we can confidently approach the throne of grace. We can make humble and earnest prayers, knowing that if we ask anything according to God’s will then He hears us. And if He hears us, then we know we have what we have asked for (1 John 5:14-15).

Do we pray with such faith and confidence in the covenant-keeping, prayer-answering God?

"Heavenly Father, thank you that you have opened the way for us to boldly approach your throne of grace. Forgive us when we have neglected to come. Help us to pray earnestly and faithfully in Jesus' name. Amen."