Monday, March 28, 2011

Day 20: Solomon - 1 Kings 7

When all the work King Solomon had done for the temple of the LORD was finished, he brought in the things his father David had dedicated—the silver and gold and the furnishings—and he placed them in the treasuries of the LORD’s temple-

It is true that one need not be in a church building to gain the ear of God. Jesus told the woman at Jacob’s well, “...a time is coming and has now come when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks.”(Jn. 4:23) Nevertheless, it is also true to say that God does not promise to hear people outside the church. The church is not the building, it is the assembly of those who believe the Jesus who said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (Jn. 14:6) The world is irate at such a monumental claim. Many who gather with the church also hold the world’s point of view. They are also incensed by Christ’s insistence to be the one and only hope for a sinful world.

Solomon’s temple was a time and space illustration of the invisible bond established with God through faith in Christ which is given to sinners by divine grace. Those who are bonded to God by his grace through faith constitute the church of Jesus Christ. Outside this church there is no salvation. Outside the church of Jesus Christ, sinners stand before God to be judged based on the lives they have lived. Those, whose lives are hidden in Christ, are judged according to the life Christ lived. They are considered dead to sin and alive toward God, based on the death Christ died. Church buildings are meetinghouses where the church (the body of Christ) assembles to meet with the Lord.

Lord, I love the habitation of Your house and the place where Your glory dwells. In the multitude of Your tender mercies prepare my heart that I may enter Your house to worship and confess Your holy name; through Jesus Christ, my God and Lord.

Schnorr von Carolsfeld woodcuts © WELS used by permission for private and congregational use
Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 Biblica. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved
Prayer on entering a church - Lutheran Service Book © 2008 Concordia Publishing House, St. Louis

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