This morning as I was reading of the finishing work of Solomon’s temple, the overlaying of the gold and bronze, it struck me that God could have kept the temple.
Here is the House of the Lord David dreamed of. Extravagant, covered in splendor and meaning, holy. It would be the place God’s people would make offerings to him, worship him. It would also be the center of all of life in Jerusalem. But for all of its glory and place in redemptive history, it would not last.
Due to the rebellion of the faithless, the disobedience of those made a people it would be stripped of its finery. It would be ruined. There would be rebuilding projects but the Temple would never again match the early majesty. And eventually it would be gone forever, burned to the ground.
God could have kept it though. In his sovereignty he could have maintained its foundations regardless of the unfaithfulness of the people he called his own. It could still remain today as the center of life, where we communed with God, a place of pilgrimage, of power. But he did not keep it.
There was something better to come, many temples made of hearts and flesh. A complete sacrifice that discontinued the need for bulls and lambs. The opportunity to commune with our Creator where we are through Jesus.
God could have kept the Temple but it is glorious news for us that he didn’t. Grace was coming another way. Those that waited longed not for the Temple but for God himself. In Advent we long for the same thing. Having tasted of salvation we desire completion. The return of our King, that he would be the center of all life, the radiance of our days.
Today be reminded of God’s care for you. That his plan brought us here, to longing and hope. And his plan will see us through. He could have kept the Temple, but he chose you.