God's House

16/11/2020 11:02

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Date: 12 November, 2020

Text: 2 Chronicles 7:1-11

Title: God's House

 

Introduction:

 

Do you remember going to visit someone with your family and hearing your parents say, "You be careful how you treat this place. This isn't your house."

exp. It may have been your grannie's home or an auntie's home. For "some reason" you were supposed to treat it differently because of WHO'S HOUSE IT WAS.

 

 ill. That is not a bad instruction to give your kids.

ill. When Katie and I were first married, lived in a farm house. Someone knocked on the door - "This was our first home. We are missionaries. Can we come in and see it?" 

 point of interest: The lady who owned the home was a retired missionary. We would become missionaries.... I believe this lady prayed for those to whom she would rent that property. It was a big answer to prayer for us.

 exp. Back to the story - these missionary parents forgot to remind their kids that it wasn't there home. They were jumping on the sofa.... (It really was fine as our sofa back then cost 10 dollars.)

 

Our text this morning is 2 Chronicles 7. It is Solomon dedicating a very special house. 

- It was incredibly built and was overlaid with gold and silver furnishings.

- But, it was most special because of WHO'S HOUSE IT WAS. It was Jehovah's house.

 

2 Chronicles 7:

1  Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house.

2  And the priests could not enter into the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD had filled the LORD'S house.

 

God's house is not to be like any other house. It is to be a special place.

 

A church building is not an Old Testament Temple or Tabernacle. 

However, I think it is rightly called in the church age - "the house of God." 

IT IS THE PLACE WHERE WE CORPORATELY GATHER TOGETHER WITH GOD. 

Matthew 18:20  For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. exp. Since Jesus is going to meet us here, we rightly understand that this is a special house.

 

ill. Jesus said about the OT house of God that it was to be a house of prayer.

Mar 11:17  And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? (Isaiah 56:7)

 note: As Solomon is dedicating the first House of God (Temple) - how does he do it? With prayer - chapter 6 is almost entirely Solomon's dedicatory prayer for this place and it's all about prayer.

 

2 Chronicles 6:

19  Have respect therefore to the prayer of thy servant, and to his supplication, O LORD my God, to hearken unto the cry and the prayer which thy servant prayeth before thee:

21  Hearken therefore unto the supplications of thy servant, and of thy people Israel, which they shall make toward this place: hear thou from thy dwelling place, even from heaven; and when thou hearest, forgive. (repeated 3 more times)

40  Now, my God, let, I beseech thee, thine eyes be open, and let thine ears be attent unto the prayer that is made in this place.

 

 app. The church house, "the house of God," ought to be a place of prayer. 

As we pray - We ought to have some special desires for the house of God.

 exp. This ought not just be any place. It is the place where we meet with God as His church.

What desires should we have for "the house of God?"

 

prayer

 

As we pray about the place where we physically meet together to worship God - THE HOUSE OF GOD - we ought to desire that it....

 

I. Be a place filled with God's presence.

2 Chronicles 6:41  Now therefore arise, O LORD God, into thy resting place, thou, and the ark of thy strength: let thy priests, O LORD God, be clothed with salvation, and let thy saints rejoice in goodness. 42  O LORD God, turn not away the face of thine anointed: remember the mercies of David thy servant.

exp. God Himself manifested His presence in the House of God.

 ill. God did this with the children of Israel in the Tabernacle (tent) in the wilderness.

Exodus 33:7  And Moses took the tabernacle, and pitched it without the camp, afar off from the camp, and called it the Tabernacle of the congregation. And it came to pass, that every one which sought the LORD went out unto the tabernacle of the congregation, which was without the camp.

8  And it came to pass, when Moses went out unto the tabernacle, that all the people rose up, and stood every man at his tent door, and looked after Moses, until he was gone into the tabernacle.

9  And it came to pass, as Moses entered into the tabernacle, the cloudy pillar descended, and stood at the door of the tabernacle, and the LORD talked with Moses.

10  And all the people saw the cloudy pillar stand at the tabernacle door: and all the people rose up and worshipped, every man in his tent door.

11  And the LORD spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle.

 exp. Joshua didn't want to leave the Tabernacle because God was there.

 ill. 2005 Prayer Meeting at Falls Baptist Church. Charlie Kitrell had just finished preaching the 1st afternoon service. Spontaneous 3 hour prayer meeting dismissed by Pastor Van Gelderen. God manifest His presence in that place. You didn't want to leave because God was there.

 app. We ought to pray and say, "God would you do that? Would you make it so that when we leave church we can say - God met with us tonight."

 transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence.

 

II. Be a place manifesting God's glory.

1  Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house.

2  And the priests could not enter into the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD had filled the LORD'S house.

exp. This manifestation of God's glory put the people in awe of Him. 

- They saw with their eyes fire from Heaven consume the sacrifice.

- This was the powerful wrath of God demonstrated against man's sin.

- This showed that God accepted their sacrifice.

- They saw the brightness of the glory of God filling the house of God.

- He accepted to reside in that holy place and would have them know it.

exp. In this age we aren't looking for real fire out of the sky to consume the sacrifice. God's wrath against our sin fell upon Jesus at Calvary.

Mark 15:22  And they bring him unto the place Golgotha, which is, being interpreted, The place of a skull.

23  And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not.

24  And when they had crucified him, they parted his garments, casting lots upon them, what every man should take.

25  And it was the third hour, and they crucified him.

26  And the superscription of his accusation was written over, THE KING OF THE JEWS.

27  And with him they crucify two thieves; the one on his right hand, and the other on his left.

28  And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, And he was numbered with the transgressors.

29  And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days,

30  Save thyself, and come down from the cross.

31  Likewise also the chief priests mocking said among themselves with the scribes, He saved others; himself he cannot save.

32  Let Christ the King of Israel descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe. And they that were crucified with him reviled him.

33  And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour.

34  And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

35  And some of them that stood by, when they heard it, said, Behold, he calleth Elias.

36  And one ran and filled a spunge full of vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink, saying, Let alone; let us see whether Elias will come to take him down.

37  And Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost.

38  And the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom. 

39  And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God.

- The wrath of God upon the Son of God at calvary is because of our sin.

- His wrath consumed Jesus showing His acceptance of the Saviour's sacrifice.

 app. You ought to be in awe today of God when you look at Calvary and see His wrath against His Son for your sin. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE MANIFESTATION OF GOD'S GLORY?

GOD MANIFESTS HIS GLORY IN EVERY PERSON WHO RECIEVES JESUS AS THEIR SAVIOUR. Ephesians 1:12  That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.

note: You are the NT Temple where God's glory should be seen. 1 Corinthians 3:16  Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?

 app. As a church family we ought to pray that the church house is a place God's glory is manifest in people being saved and following the Lord in believer's baptism? (Don't rob God of His glory - let it be manifest and put your faith in Jesus!)

transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence, a place manifesting God's glory....

 

III. Be a place stirred up by God.

3  And when all the children of Israel saw how the fire came down, and the glory of the LORD upon the house, they bowed themselves with their faces to the ground upon the pavement, and worshipped, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.

note: If you heard about this without being there, you may think these people had become overly emotional. (This was a spontaneous reaction!) This was a revival taking place with God's people.

ill. Back in the day when men go to a football game they weren't emotionally detached. Even if they watched at home they weren't emotionally detached! Why - Because they were stirred up because of love for their team.

 note: It is a good thing when we get spiritually stirred up in the House of God.

ill. James Robe, Kilsyth, Scotland in defence of the revival that was taking place.

"I seriously beg of any who are prejudiced against this dispensation of God's extraordinary grace, and look upon it as a delusion, that they will show themselves so charitable, as to direct me and other ministers, what we shall answer distressed persons of all ages, who come to us crying bitterly that they are undone, because of unbelief and other sins -'What shall we do to be saved!' And as a young girl about twelve, who had been in distress for some time called upon me in the house where I was, and asked me with great sedateness,'What shall I do to get Christ?', shall we tell them that they are not Christless, and are not unconverted, when we evidently see many of them to be such?  Shall we tell them that their fears of the wrath of God are all but delusion, and that it is not such a dreadful thing that they need to be much afraid of it" Shall we tell persons lamenting their cursing, and swearing, Sabbath-breaking, and other immoralities, that it is the devil that now makes them see these evils to be offensive to God, and destructive to their souls? Shall we tell them, who, under greatest uneasiness, inquire of us what they shall do to get an interest and faith in Jesus Christ, that Satan is deluding them, when they have, or show any concern this way" In fine, shall we pray and recommend it to them to pray to God, to deliever them from such delusions? It would be worse than devilish to treat the Lord's sighing and groaning prisoners at this rate; and yet such treatment is a natural consequence of reckoning this the work of the devil, and a delusion." The Log College, by Archibald Alexander 

 app. We pray for God's to manifest His presence and His glory for this very purpose of stirring up the house of God.

transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence, a place manifesting God's glory, a place stirred up by God.

 

IV. Be a place dedicated to God's service.

 exp. There are ministries that take place in the house of God. (Our sacrifice was a once for all at Calvary - that work is finished. However, SINCE GOD HAS BEEN SO GOOD TO US - LET'S GIVE BACK TO GOD.)

A. Serving with substance.

 exp. Substance is tangible. It is plain to see.

 ill. I told my wife I loved her before we got engaged, but when we got engaged I showed it by putting a ring on her finger.

 app. Solomon didn't just say that He appreciated and loved God. He showed it substantially.

4  Then the king and all the people offered sacrifices before the LORD.

5  And king Solomon offered a sacrifice of twenty and two thousand oxen, and an hundred and twenty thousand sheep: so the king and all the people dedicated the house of God.

 exp. 22,000 oxen and 120,000 sheep. Solomon was a great king and He gave a kingly offering to the LORD. 

note: The house of God had been built by the generosity of God's people and it would be maintained in the same way. 

 question: Can you imagine if they built the house and no one gave an offering? God's worship would be hindered and God's servants would lose their livelihood.

 ill. Our church - supports 3 missionaries - if our church and others diminish their support - their light goes out. Our church will someday need to pay a pastor's salary, we already pay for whatever needs we have. 

exp. God's house is maintained by those who serve God with their substance.

2Co 9:7  Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.

 app. This place is dedicated to God's service - one of those ways is serving God with our substance.

B. Serving by office.

6  And the priests waited on their offices: 

exp. There was work to be done in the house of God and the priests office was important to getting it done.

 ill. There are two main offices in a local church - Pastor (senior, youth, music) and Deacons. The requirements are found in the pastoral epistles. 

 app. We ought to be praying for God to help us dedicate this place to his service by raising up ministers and deacons.

C. Serving with instruments.

...the Levites also with instruments of musick of the LORD, which David the king had made to praise the LORD, because his mercy endureth for ever, when David praised by their ministry; and the priests sounded trumpets before them, and all Israel stood.

exp. I don't understand churches that forbid the use of instruments in worship. 

question: Why would God make instruments such an important part of service in the OT house of God and forbid their use in the NT?

 ill. We have different instruments we use in worship in our church and IT IS BIBLICAL.

Psa 68:25  The singers went before, the players on instruments followed after; among them were the damsels playing with timbrels.

Psa 87:7  As well the singers as the players on instruments shall be there: all my springs are in thee.

 exp. We ought to pray that God will help us to develop good musicians in our church who can righly worship God through music. If it's only THE INSTRUMENT OF OUR VOICE THAT WE USE - we ought to make a joyful noise unto the Lord.

 app. Are you helping make this a place dedicated to God's service - by offerings, office or music?

transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence, a place manifesting God's glory, a place stirred up by God, a place dedicated to God's service.

 

V. Be a place consecrated for God's worship.

ill. Sometimes a church building is called a sanctuary: in a religious sense that means a holy place.

 exp. It is a place specially set apart for worship.

7  Moreover Solomon hallowed the middle of the court that was before the house of the LORD: for there he offered burnt offerings, and the fat of the peace offerings, because the brasen altar which Solomon had made was not able to receive the burnt offerings, and the meat offerings, and the fat.

 exp. Solomon needed more space for offerings so he enlarged the area set apart for sacrifice. HE CONSECRATED IT FOR GOD'S WORSHIP.

ill. My cousin had a wedding reception in a gymnasium. They decorated it beautifully. Everyone was dressed up. Nobody was shooting hoops. It was sanctified for their wedding.

 note: A building could have many uses. But when it comes to worship - that place ought to be consecrated to God.

 app. This place is not theatre, not a concert, not a ball game, it is a place consecrated for God's worship.

ill. Jesus anger in the temple was because people defiled the temple.

Luk 19:46  Saying unto them, It is written, My house is the house of prayer: but ye have made it a den of thieves.

 app. We ought to consider our dress and our activities within this consecrated place.

transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence, a place manifesting God's glory, a place stirred up by God, a place dedicated to God's service, a place consecrated for God's worship.

 

VI. Be a place congregated in God's name.

8  Also at the same time Solomon kept the feast seven days, and all Israel with him, a very great congregation, from the entering in of Hamath unto the river of Egypt.

9  And in the eighth day they made a solemn assembly: for they kept the dedication of the altar seven days, and the feast seven days.

exp. This assembly lasted for a fortnight and it was well attended. "All Israel with him, A Very Great Congregation."

THIS REVIVAL WOULD NOT HAVE TAKEN PLACE IF GOD'S PEOPLE HAD BEEN ABSENT.

Exp. They met with God and saw His glory because they obediently came to the dedication of the house of God.

app.  We ought to pray for our church always to be well congregated in God's name. As pastor, I don't want you to miss all the blessing of what we've considered tonight. I certainly don't want us to miss revival because we cease to congregate.

 

VII. Be a place of God's refreshment.

10  And on the three and twentieth day of the seventh month he sent the people away into their tents, glad and merry in heart for the goodness that the LORD had shewed unto David, and to Solomon, and to Israel his people.

11  Thus Solomon finished the house of the LORD, and the king's house: and all that came into Solomon's heart to make in the house of the LORD, and in his own house, he prosperously effected.

exp. Did you notice that none of the people left disappointed that they had given up two weeks of their lives to attend this temple dedication?

 ill. I've attended a lot of special church services in my life.

- Youth Camp - kid that didn't want to be there doesn't want to leave at the end.

- revival meetings - I'm so glad I came even though it was a sacrifice.

- Men's camp - I was too busy, but I'm so glad I came.

- Family camp in Germany - lot of travel, but always worth it.

 app. Our church ought to be a place where we say, "It's been good to be in the house of the Lord."

 

conclusion: When you go to someone else's house - just remember - It's not your house.

 

When we come to God's house - His house is special because OF WHO HE IS.

 

AS WE PRAY FOR THE HOUSE OF GOD, WE OUGHT TO PRAY THAT IT BE....

 

1) A place filled with God's presence.

2) A place manifesting God's glory.

3) A place focused on God's goodness.

4) A place dedicated to God's service.

- service of substance

- service of office

- service of praise

5) A place consecrated for God's worship.

6) A place congregated in God's name.

7) A place of God's refreshment.

Date: 12 November, 2020
Text: 2 Chronicles 7:1-11
Title: God's House
 
Introduction:
 
Do you remember going to visit someone with your family and hearing your parents say, "You be careful how you treat this place. This isn't your house."
exp. It may have been your grannie's home or an auntie's home. For "some reason" you were supposed to treat it differently because of WHO'S HOUSE IT WAS.
 
 ill. That is not a bad instruction to give your kids.
ill. When Katie and I were first married, lived in a farm house. Someone knocked on the door - "This was our first home. We are missionaries. Can we come in and see it?" 
 point of interest: The lady who owned the home was a retired missionary. We would become missionaries.... I believe this lady prayed for those to whom she would rent that property. It was a big answer to prayer for us.
 exp. Back to the story - these missionary parents forgot to remind their kids that it wasn't there home. They were jumping on the sofa.... (It really was fine as our sofa back then cost 10 dollars.)
 
Our text this morning is 2 Chronicles 7. It is Solomon dedicating a very special house. 
- It was incredibly built and was overlaid with gold and silver furnishings.
- But, it was most special because of WHO'S HOUSE IT WAS. It was Jehovah's house.
 
2 Chronicles 7:
1  Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house.
2  And the priests could not enter into the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD had filled the LORD'S house.
 
God's house is not to be like any other house. It is to be a special place.
 
A church building is not an Old Testament Temple or Tabernacle. 
However, I think it is rightly called in the church age - "the house of God." 
IT IS THE PLACE WHERE WE CORPORATELY GATHER TOGETHER WITH GOD. 
Matthew 18:20  For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. exp. Since Jesus is going to meet us here, we rightly understand that this is a special house.
 
ill. Jesus said about the OT house of God that it was to be a house of prayer.
Mar 11:17  And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? (Isaiah 56:7)
 note: As Solomon is dedicating the first House of God (Temple) - how does he do it? With prayer - chapter 6 is almost entirely Solomon's dedicatory prayer for this place and it's all about prayer.
 
2 Chronicles 6:
19  Have respect therefore to the prayer of thy servant, and to his supplication, O LORD my God, to hearken unto the cry and the prayer which thy servant prayeth before thee:
21  Hearken therefore unto the supplications of thy servant, and of thy people Israel, which they shall make toward this place: hear thou from thy dwelling place, even from heaven; and when thou hearest, forgive. (repeated 3 more times)
40  Now, my God, let, I beseech thee, thine eyes be open, and let thine ears be attent unto the prayer that is made in this place.
 
 app. The church house, "the house of God," ought to be a place of prayer. 
As we pray - We ought to have some special desires for the house of God.
 exp. This ought not just be any place. It is the place where we meet with God as His church.
What desires should we have for "the house of God?"
 
prayer
 
As we pray about the place where we physically meet together to worship God - THE HOUSE OF GOD - we ought to desire that it....
 
I. Be a place filled with God's presence.
2 Chronicles 6:41  Now therefore arise, O LORD God, into thy resting place, thou, and the ark of thy strength: let thy priests, O LORD God, be clothed with salvation, and let thy saints rejoice in goodness. 42  O LORD God, turn not away the face of thine anointed: remember the mercies of David thy servant.
exp. God Himself manifested His presence in the House of God.
 ill. God did this with the children of Israel in the Tabernacle (tent) in the wilderness.
Exodus 33:7  And Moses took the tabernacle, and pitched it without the camp, afar off from the camp, and called it the Tabernacle of the congregation. And it came to pass, that every one which sought the LORD went out unto the tabernacle of the congregation, which was without the camp.
8  And it came to pass, when Moses went out unto the tabernacle, that all the people rose up, and stood every man at his tent door, and looked after Moses, until he was gone into the tabernacle.
9  And it came to pass, as Moses entered into the tabernacle, the cloudy pillar descended, and stood at the door of the tabernacle, and the LORD talked with Moses.
10  And all the people saw the cloudy pillar stand at the tabernacle door: and all the people rose up and worshipped, every man in his tent door.
11  And the LORD spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend. And he turned again into the camp: but his servant Joshua, the son of Nun, a young man, departed not out of the tabernacle.
 exp. Joshua didn't want to leave the Tabernacle because God was there.
 ill. 2005 Prayer Meeting at Falls Baptist Church. Charlie Kitrell had just finished preaching the 1st afternoon service. Spontaneous 3 hour prayer meeting dismissed by Pastor Van Gelderen. God manifest His presence in that place. You didn't want to leave because God was there.
 app. We ought to pray and say, "God would you do that? Would you make it so that when we leave church we can say - God met with us tonight."
 transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence.
 
II. Be a place manifesting God's glory.
1  Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven, and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the LORD filled the house.
2  And the priests could not enter into the house of the LORD, because the glory of the LORD had filled the LORD'S house.
exp. This manifestation of God's glory put the people in awe of Him. 
- They saw with their eyes fire from Heaven consume the sacrifice.
- This was the powerful wrath of God demonstrated against man's sin.
- This showed that God accepted their sacrifice.
- They saw the brightness of the glory of God filling the house of God.
- He accepted to reside in that holy place and would have them know it.
exp. In this age we aren't looking for real fire out of the sky to consume the sacrifice. God's wrath against our sin fell upon Jesus at Calvary.
Mark 15:22  And they bring him unto the place Golgotha, which is, being interpreted, The place of a skull.
23  And they gave him to drink wine mingled with myrrh: but he received it not.
24  And when they had crucified him, they parted his garments, casting lots upon them, what every man should take.
25  And it was the third hour, and they crucified him.
26  And the superscription of his accusation was written over, THE KING OF THE JEWS.
27  And with him they crucify two thieves; the one on his right hand, and the other on his left.
28  And the scripture was fulfilled, which saith, And he was numbered with the transgressors.
29  And they that passed by railed on him, wagging their heads, and saying, Ah, thou that destroyest the temple, and buildest it in three days,
30  Save thyself, and come down from the cross.
31  Likewise also the chief priests mocking said among themselves with the scribes, He saved others; himself he cannot save.
32  Let Christ the King of Israel descend now from the cross, that we may see and believe. And they that were crucified with him reviled him.
33  And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour.
34  And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
35  And some of them that stood by, when they heard it, said, Behold, he calleth Elias.
36  And one ran and filled a spunge full of vinegar, and put it on a reed, and gave him to drink, saying, Let alone; let us see whether Elias will come to take him down.
37  And Jesus cried with a loud voice, and gave up the ghost.
38  And the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom. 
39  And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God.
- The wrath of God upon the Son of God at calvary is because of our sin.
- His wrath consumed Jesus showing His acceptance of the Saviour's sacrifice.
 app. You ought to be in awe today of God when you look at Calvary and see His wrath against His Son for your sin. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE MANIFESTATION OF GOD'S GLORY?
GOD MANIFESTS HIS GLORY IN EVERY PERSON WHO RECIEVES JESUS AS THEIR SAVIOUR. Ephesians 1:12  That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
note: You are the NT Temple where God's glory should be seen. 1 Corinthians 3:16  Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?
 app. As a church family we ought to pray that the church house is a place God's glory is manifest in people being saved and following the Lord in believer's baptism? (Don't rob God of His glory - let it be manifest and put your faith in Jesus!)
transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence, a place manifesting God's glory....
 
III. Be a place stirred up by God.
3  And when all the children of Israel saw how the fire came down, and the glory of the LORD upon the house, they bowed themselves with their faces to the ground upon the pavement, and worshipped, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever.
note: If you heard about this without being there, you may think these people had become overly emotional. (This was a spontaneous reaction!) This was a revival taking place with God's people.
ill. Back in the day when men go to a football game they weren't emotionally detached. Even if they watched at home they weren't emotionally detached! Why - Because they were stirred up because of love for their team.
 note: It is a good thing when we get spiritually stirred up in the House of God.
ill. James Robe, Kilsyth, Scotland in defence of the revival that was taking place.
"I seriously beg of any who are prejudiced against this dispensation of God's extraordinary grace, and look upon it as a delusion, that they will show themselves so charitable, as to direct me and other ministers, what we shall answer distressed persons of all ages, who come to us crying bitterly that they are undone, because of unbelief and other sins -'What shall we do to be saved!' And as a young girl about twelve, who had been in distress for some time called upon me in the house where I was, and asked me with great sedateness,'What shall I do to get Christ?', shall we tell them that they are not Christless, and are not unconverted, when we evidently see many of them to be such?  Shall we tell them that their fears of the wrath of God are all but delusion, and that it is not such a dreadful thing that they need to be much afraid of it" Shall we tell persons lamenting their cursing, and swearing, Sabbath-breaking, and other immoralities, that it is the devil that now makes them see these evils to be offensive to God, and destructive to their souls? Shall we tell them, who, under greatest uneasiness, inquire of us what they shall do to get an interest and faith in Jesus Christ, that Satan is deluding them, when they have, or show any concern this way" In fine, shall we pray and recommend it to them to pray to God, to deliever them from such delusions? It would be worse than devilish to treat the Lord's sighing and groaning prisoners at this rate; and yet such treatment is a natural consequence of reckoning this the work of the devil, and a delusion." The Log College, by Archibald Alexander 
 app. We pray for God's to manifest His presence and His glory for this very purpose of stirring up the house of God.
transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence, a place manifesting God's glory, a place stirred up by God.
 
IV. Be a place dedicated to God's service.
 exp. There are ministries that take place in the house of God. (Our sacrifice was a once for all at Calvary - that work is finished. However, SINCE GOD HAS BEEN SO GOOD TO US - LET'S GIVE BACK TO GOD.)
A. Serving with substance.
 exp. Substance is tangible. It is plain to see.
 ill. I told my wife I loved her before we got engaged, but when we got engaged I showed it by putting a ring on her finger.
 app. Solomon didn't just say that He appreciated and loved God. He showed it substantially.
4  Then the king and all the people offered sacrifices before the LORD.
5  And king Solomon offered a sacrifice of twenty and two thousand oxen, and an hundred and twenty thousand sheep: so the king and all the people dedicated the house of God.
 exp. 22,000 oxen and 120,000 sheep. Solomon was a great king and He gave a kingly offering to the LORD. 
note: The house of God had been built by the generosity of God's people and it would be maintained in the same way. 
 question: Can you imagine if they built the house and no one gave an offering? God's worship would be hindered and God's servants would lose their livelihood.
 ill. Our church - supports 3 missionaries - if our church and others diminish their support - their light goes out. Our church will someday need to pay a pastor's salary, we already pay for whatever needs we have. 
exp. God's house is maintained by those who serve God with their substance.
2Co 9:7  Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
 app. This place is dedicated to God's service - one of those ways is serving God with our substance.
B. Serving by office.
6  And the priests waited on their offices: 
exp. There was work to be done in the house of God and the priests office was important to getting it done.
 ill. There are two main offices in a local church - Pastor (senior, youth, music) and Deacons. The requirements are found in the pastoral epistles. 
 app. We ought to be praying for God to help us dedicate this place to his service by raising up ministers and deacons.
C. Serving with instruments.
...the Levites also with instruments of musick of the LORD, which David the king had made to praise the LORD, because his mercy endureth for ever, when David praised by their ministry; and the priests sounded trumpets before them, and all Israel stood.
exp. I don't understand churches that forbid the use of instruments in worship. 
question: Why would God make instruments such an important part of service in the OT house of God and forbid their use in the NT?
 ill. We have different instruments we use in worship in our church and IT IS BIBLICAL.
Psa 68:25  The singers went before, the players on instruments followed after; among them were the damsels playing with timbrels.
Psa 87:7  As well the singers as the players on instruments shall be there: all my springs are in thee.
 exp. We ought to pray that God will help us to develop good musicians in our church who can righly worship God through music. If it's only THE INSTRUMENT OF OUR VOICE THAT WE USE - we ought to make a joyful noise unto the Lord.
 app. Are you helping make this a place dedicated to God's service - by offerings, office or music?
transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence, a place manifesting God's glory, a place stirred up by God, a place dedicated to God's service.
 
V. Be a place consecrated for God's worship.
ill. Sometimes a church building is called a sanctuary: in a religious sense that means a holy place.
 exp. It is a place specially set apart for worship.
7  Moreover Solomon hallowed the middle of the court that was before the house of the LORD: for there he offered burnt offerings, and the fat of the peace offerings, because the brasen altar which Solomon had made was not able to receive the burnt offerings, and the meat offerings, and the fat.
 exp. Solomon needed more space for offerings so he enlarged the area set apart for sacrifice. HE CONSECRATED IT FOR GOD'S WORSHIP.
ill. My cousin had a wedding reception in a gymnasium. They decorated it beautifully. Everyone was dressed up. Nobody was shooting hoops. It was sanctified for their wedding.
 note: A building could have many uses. But when it comes to worship - that place ought to be consecrated to God.
 app. This place is not theatre, not a concert, not a ball game, it is a place consecrated for God's worship.
ill. Jesus anger in the temple was because people defiled the temple.
Luk 19:46  Saying unto them, It is written, My house is the house of prayer: but ye have made it a den of thieves.
 app. We ought to consider our dress and our activities within this consecrated place.
transition: Help our church house to be a place filled with God's presence, a place manifesting God's glory, a place stirred up by God, a place dedicated to God's service, a place consecrated for God's worship.
 
VI. Be a place congregated in God's name.
8  Also at the same time Solomon kept the feast seven days, and all Israel with him, a very great congregation, from the entering in of Hamath unto the river of Egypt.
9  And in the eighth day they made a solemn assembly: for they kept the dedication of the altar seven days, and the feast seven days.
exp. This assembly lasted for a fortnight and it was well attended. "All Israel with him, A Very Great Congregation."
THIS REVIVAL WOULD NOT HAVE TAKEN PLACE IF GOD'S PEOPLE HAD BEEN ABSENT.
Exp. They met with God and saw His glory because they obediently came to the dedication of the house of God.
app.  We ought to pray for our church always to be well congregated in God's name. As pastor, I don't want you to miss all the blessing of what we've considered tonight. I certainly don't want us to miss revival because we cease to congregate.
 
VII. Be a place of God's refreshment.
10  And on the three and twentieth day of the seventh month he sent the people away into their tents, glad and merry in heart for the goodness that the LORD had shewed unto David, and to Solomon, and to Israel his people.
11  Thus Solomon finished the house of the LORD, and the king's house: and all that came into Solomon's heart to make in the house of the LORD, and in his own house, he prosperously effected.
exp. Did you notice that none of the people left disappointed that they had given up two weeks of their lives to attend this temple dedication?
 ill. I've attended a lot of special church services in my life.
- Youth Camp - kid that didn't want to be there doesn't want to leave at the end.
- revival meetings - I'm so glad I came even though it was a sacrifice.
- Men's camp - I was too busy, but I'm so glad I came.
- Family camp in Germany - lot of travel, but always worth it.
 app. Our church ought to be a place where we say, "It's been good to be in the house of the Lord."
 
conclusion: When you go to someone else's house - just remember - It's not your house.
 
When we come to God's house - His house is special because OF WHO HE IS.
 
AS WE PRAY FOR THE HOUSE OF GOD, WE OUGHT TO PRAY THAT IT BE....
 
1) A place filled with God's presence.
2) A place manifesting God's glory.
3) A place focused on God's goodness.
4) A place dedicated to God's service.
- service of substance
- service of office
- service of praise
5) A place consecrated for God's worship.
6) A place congregated in God's name.
7) A place of God's refreshment.