“And in the eleventh year…the house was finished in all its details and according to all its plans. So he was seven years building it. But Solomon took thirteen years to build his own house…” (I Kings 6:38, 7:1)
Solomon was the wisest man who ever lived. He was ruler of the tribes of Israel after his father David, and the writer of over 3000 proverbs and 1005 songs (1 Kings 4:32).
He spent 7 years building the first temple, that magnificent house of worship for the Lord God. But…
There’s always a but…
But he spent 13 years building his own house.
Man, that stopped me in my tracks when I read it today. Think about it…he took nearly twice the time to work on his own digs as he did to work on the place where worship would take place, where the glory of God would dwell, where the presence of God Most High would be.
But before we cast stones at Solomon…how about you?
In 1 Corinthians, Paul asked the Corinthian saints this question: “Do you not know that YOU are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?” (1 Corinthians 3:16)
Put those two things together…YOU, believer in Jesus, are the Temple of God. The Holy Spirit, third person of the Trinity, dwells within YOU. Just as the presence of God would abide in the temple of Solomon, He now abides in YOU.
Question for us: how much time do we spend on God’s dwelling place? How much more time do we spend on other things? Be honest. I read that about Solomon and thought “wow, look at his priorities!” Then the mirror of the Word was held up to my face and I thought “Ok…how about your priorities?”
We all have things we must do. We all have jobs. Many of us have families. We have responsibilities. I’m not saying shirk those. However, if our lives were spread out before us, what would they say about what matters most to us? How much of our time is spent building with straw, hay, and stubble (things that do not matter and won’t endure) versus gold, silver and precious stones, or things that will endure? (see 1 Cor. 3:12)
It makes me thing about building methods. A friend recently visited the “Old World”, and saw some of the castles there. These places have endured for centuries. Then I think about my own home, just a few years old. I doubt it’s still standing in 50 years, much less 500. They just don’t build them like they used to.
But are we building track homes, spiritually speaking, rather than cathedrals and castles?
With each passing day, I am more and more convinced of the need to spend more time in God’s presence, to spend more time on the things that matter, to spend more time focusing on God’s Word and His kingdom, than on anything else. I’m more and more convinced of the need to build for keeps, to last, to endure.
After all, Jesus said “Seek first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” (Matt 6:33)
What are you seeking? What are you spending time on? We’re all building. We’ll all leave a legacy of something behind us.
Are you building for keeps?