1 Chronicles 22


David Builds an Altar (Continued)

      • Then David said, “This is the place where the house of Yahweh God will be, along with the altar of burnt offering for Israel.”

        • Pulpit Commentary remarks, “This verse evidently belongs to the close of the last chapter, and should have had its place there.”

David’s Preparations for the Temple

      • ESV Study Bible writes, “David’s designation of the temple site (v. 1) leads directly into the next unit of the work (chs 22-29), which describes David’s preparation for building the temple. Although David was prevented from taking part in the actual construction, he stands alongside Solomon in this chapter as the one who provided the materials, personnel, and conditions essential for the task. Chapter 22 has the form of a private commissioning of Solomon, while chs 28-29 include a public commissioning ‘in the sight of all Israel’ (28:8). Their reigns are presented as a complimentary unit, both being essential for the fulfillment of the task: what David begins, Solomon completes. The presentation of events is modeled in part on the transfer of leadership from Moses to Joshua (see esp. Deut 31:6-8, 23; Josh 1:5, 7-9).”

      • HCSB adds, “The material in chapters 22-29 is found nowhere else in the OT, and the Chronicler’s source or sources for this detailed section on David has been the object of much speculation.”

    • David gave orders to assemble the resident foreigners living in Israel, and he appointed stonecutters from among them to chisel stones for the building of God’s house. David supplied a large amount of iron to make the nails for the doors and gates and for the braces, and he gave more bronze than could even be weighed. He also provided more cedar logs than could be counted, because the Sidonians and Tyrians had brought David a large quantity of cedar logs.

      • On these “resident foreigners,” NET Bible notes, “The term…(ger) refers to a foreign resident, but with different social implications in different settings. In Mosaic Law the resident foreigner was essentially a naturalized citizen and convert to worshiping the God of Israel (see Exod 12:19, 48; Deut 29:10-13).”

      • In fact, Pulpit Commentary points out that, “These are plainly called in the Septuagint ‘proselytes’…”

      • NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible includes the following remarks:

        • There was an abundance of stone available in ancient Israel of various types, from Galilee basalt to coastal sandstone. Harder limestone was available in the hill country, and granite could be quarried in the southern Arabah near Eilat. Excavations at various quarry sites have shed light on the methods used for quarrying. Blocks of stone were outlined by digging narrow channels on the four sides using iron picks. They were then pried loose or split along the grain of the rock by driving wooden wedges into the cracks and then soaking them with water. As the wood expanded, it split the rock. Stones were then dressed either at the quarry or at the building site. In the case of the temple, stones were dressed off site, so that the noise of chisels would not be heard. At this period, the way in which the stone was prepared is known as Ashlar masonry. The margin around the edges only was dressed smooth using an iron chisel. The center of the block was left with rough surface (see 1 Ki 7:9).”

        • Iron was in general use in Palestine by about 1200 BC. The Philistines were workers of iron and were careful to keep the secrets from the Israelites during the time of Saul. David remedied this lack, and iron became freely available. It appears that the iron here is for decorative use, possibly to attach plates or bands to the doors and gates.”

      • David said, “My son Solomon is young and inexperienced, and the house that is to be built for Yahweh must be exceedingly magnificent, famous, and considered glorious by all the nations. Therefore, I will make the preparations for it.” So David made extensive preparations for it before his death.

Solomon Charged to Build the Temple

      • Then he called his son Solomon and charged him to build a house for Yahweh, the God of Israel. David told Solomon, “My son, I had it in my heart to build a house for the name of Yahweh, my God. But the word of Yahweh came to me and said, ‘You have spilled a great deal of blood and fought many wars. You are not to build a house for My name because you have spilled a great deal of blood on the earth in My sight. But look, you will have a son born to you who will be a man of rest. I will give him rest from all of his surrounding enemies. Indeed, his name will be Solomon, and I will give Israel peace and quiet during his reign. He is the one who will build a house for My name. He will be My son, and I will be his father, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel forever.’

        • ESV Study Bible writes, “David’s private commission to his son is intended to prepare him in mind and heart for his demanding duty. David refers back to the dynastic promise (17:7-14), amplifying some of its statements. His disqualification by Yahweh from temple building (22:8) arises chiefly from the character of his reign, a time of warfare and subduing enemies (chs 18-20), in contrast to Solomon’s reign, the promised time of peace and quiet for Israel (see also Deut 12:10-11)…”

      • NLT Illustrated Study Bible notes, “…David’s wars were not unethical, and God had blessed and supported him. However, David had been tainted with a kind of ceremonial uncleanness from the blood he had shed and the deaths he had caused in battle (see 1 Chr 28:3; cp Gen 4:10-12; Lev 17:3-4; Deut 21:1-9; Matt 27:24-25). Accordingly, he could not build a holy sanctuary for the Lord. Solomon was a man of peace, free from war and from shedding blood in battle…The Hebrew deliberately uses two different words to describe conditions during Solomon’s reign: peace (Hebrew shalom, related to Solomon’s name), and quiet (Hebrew menukhah, related to the idea of redemption).”

      • Now, my son, may Yahweh be with you so that you will succeed in building the house of Yahweh your God, as He has said you would. May Yahweh give you discretion and understanding when He puts you in charge of Israel so that you may obey the law of Yahweh your God. If you carefully obey the statutes and ordinances that Yahweh commanded Moses for Israel, then you will succeed. Be strong and courageous; don’t be afraid or dismayed. Look, I have taken great pains to provide the materials for Yahweh’s house: 3,775 tons of gold, 37,750 tons of silver, and so much bronze and iron that it can’t be weighed. I have also provided wood and stone, but you may need to add more to them. You also have many workmen: stonecutters, masons, carpenters, as well as an innumerable array of people who are skilled in working with gold, silver, bronze, and iron. Now begin the work, and may Yahweh be with you!”

      • Along with fulfilling his commission to build, David emphasizes Solomon’s need to keep the Law of Moses in the ruling of his kingdom…” (ESV Study Bible)

        • Guzik says, “David knew that Solomon could not be strong or courageous without obedient fellowship with God. In this place of obedient fellowship, Solomon would prosper inall that he did. Solomon could take courage and reject fear because God promised David that as long as his sons walked in obedience, they would keep the throne of Israel (1 Kings 2:1-4). This is an amazing promise. No matter what the Assyrians or the Egyptians or the Babylonians did, as long as David’s sons were obedient and followed God with their heart and with all their soul, God would establish their kingdom. He would take care of the rest.”

      • On the amount of gold and silver mentioned here, NIV Cultural Backgrounds Study Bible remarks. Regarding the gold, “In today’s currency, the monetary value of such a hoard would be tens of billions of dollars. It is an immense amount of gold…Outside Chronicles, the largest amount of gold mentioned is 666 talents (nearly 25 tons…), the base rate of gold that Solomon received per year (1 Ki 10:14)…” Regarding the silver, “Once again this is a colossal figure…worth nearly 10 billion dollars on today’s market. The figure far exceeds any other Biblical or extra-Biblical references…” The same source adds that these exorbitant sums have caused some to speculate that the figures are not meant to be taken literally, but are rhetorical in nature instead- like the statements that there was too great a quantity of bronze and iron to weigh.

      • Then David commanded all the leaders of Israel to help his son Solomon: “Yahweh your God is with you, isn’t He? Hasn’t He given you rest on every side? Because He handed the land’s inhabitants over to me, and the land is subject to Yahweh and His people. Now devote your heart and mind to seeking Yahweh your God. Get started building Yahweh God’s sanctuary so that you may bring the ark of Yahweh’s covenant and the holy items dedicated to God into the house built for the name of Yahweh.”

        • ESV Study Bible says, “David’s exhortation to the leaders of Israel to seek the Lord entails active obedience to the divine command: Arise and build the sanctuary of the Lord God. Solomon must have already been appointed to a co-regency with David by this time (see 1 Kings 1:28-2:12) in order for David to command Israel’s leaders to assist Solomon in his task. As elsewhere in the book, the order of 1 Chronicles 22-29 is dictated more by thematic considerations than by strict chronology.”

        • On David’s command to the leaders to devote their hearts and minds to seeking Yahweh, Guzik adds, “This command of David’s is interesting in its context. David gave this command in the context of work, not the context of leisurely repose before God. David knew that it was possible to keep one’s heart set on seeking God even in the midst of doing a great work before the LORD.” He then cites Selman, “They must seek the LORD (v. 19) as David had sought him (cf. 13:3; 14:10, 14). David explains how to seek (‘devote your heart and soul’; cf.reb, neb, jb) and what it meant in practice (Build the sanctuary). As elsewhere, ‘seeking’ is an act of obedience rather than a search for guidance, and David will yet again underline its importance (1 Chronicles 28:8-9).”

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