1 Kings 7:51–8:21; 2 Corinthians 3

51 Thus all the work that King Solomon did on the house of the Lord was finished. And Solomon brought in ithe things that David his father had dedicated, the silver, the gold, and the vessels, and stored them in the treasuries of the house of the Lord.

The Ark Brought into the Temple

jThen Solomon assembled the elders of Israel and all the heads of the tribes, kthe leaders of the fathers' houses of the people of Israel, before King Solomon in Jerusalem, lto bring up the ark of the covenant of the Lord out of mthe city of David, which is Zion. And all the men of Israel assembled to King Solomon at nthe feast in the month Ethanim, which is the seventh month. And all the elders of Israel came, and othe priests took up the ark. And they brought up the ark of the Lord, pthe tent of meeting, and all the holy vessels that were in the tent; the priests and the Levites brought them up. And King Solomon and all the congregation of Israel, who had assembled before him, were with him before the ark, qsacrificing so many sheep and oxen that they could not be counted or numbered. rThen the priests brought the ark of the covenant of the Lord sto its place in tthe inner sanctuary of the house, in the Most Holy Place, underneath the wings of the cherubim. For the cherubim spread out their wings over the place of the ark, so that the cherubim overshadowed the ark and its poles. uAnd the poles were so long that the ends of the poles were seen from the Holy Place before tthe inner sanctuary; but they could not be seen from outside. And they are there to this day. There was nothing in the ark except vthe two tablets of stone that Moses put there at Horeb, where wthe Lord made a covenant with the people of Israel, when they came out of the land of Egypt. 10 And when the priests came out of the Holy Place, xa cloud filled the house of the Lord, 11 so that the priests could not stand to minister because of the cloud, for the glory of the Lord filled the house of the Lord.

Solomon Blesses the Lord

12 yThen Solomon said, The Lord1 has said that he would dwell zin thick darkness. 13 aI have indeed built you an exalted house, ba place for you to dwell in forever. 14 Then the king turned around and cblessed all the assembly of Israel, while all the assembly of Israel stood. 15 And he said, dBlessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, who with his hand has fulfilled ewhat he promised with his mouth to David my father, saying, 16 fSince the day that I brought my people Israel out of Egypt, I chose no city out of all the tribes of Israel in which to build a house, gthat my name might be there. hBut I chose David to be over my people Israel. 17 iNow it was in the heart of David my father to build a house for the name of the Lord, the God of Israel. 18 But the Lord said to David my father, Whereas it was in your heart to build a house for my name, you did well that it was in your heart. 19 jNevertheless, you shall not build the house, but your son who shall be born to you shall build the house for my name. 20 Now the Lord has fulfilled his promise that he made. For I have risen in the place of David my father, and sit on the throne of Israel, kas the Lord promised, and I have built the house for the name of the Lord, the God of Israel. 21 And there I have provided a place for the ark, lin which is the covenant of the Lord that he made with our fathers, when he brought them out of the land of Egypt.


Ministers of the New Covenant

qAre we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, ras some do, sletters of recommendation to you, or from you? tYou yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our1 hearts, to be known and read by all. And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of uthe living God, not on vtablets of stone but on wtablets of xhuman hearts.2

ySuch is the confidence that we have through Christ toward God. zNot that we are sufficient in ourselves to claim anything as coming from us, but aour sufficiency is from God, who has made us sufficient to be bministers of ca new covenant, not of dthe letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but ethe Spirit gives life.

Now if fthe ministry of death, carved in letters on stone, came with such glory gthat the Israelites could not gaze at Moses' face because of its glory, which was being brought to an end, will not the ministry of the Spirit have even more glory? For if there was glory in hthe ministry of condemnation, ithe ministry of righteousness must far exceed it in glory. 10 Indeed, in this case, what once had glory has come to have no glory at all, because of the glory that surpasses it. 11 For if what was being brought to an end came with glory, much more will what is permanent have glory.

12 Since we have such a hope, jwe are very bold, 13 not like Moses, kwho would put a veil over his face so that the Israelites might not gaze at the outcome of what was being brought to an end. 14 But ltheir minds were mhardened. For to this day, nwhen they read othe old covenant, that same veil remains unlifted, because only through Christ is it taken away. 15 Yes, to this day whenever Moses is read a veil lies over their hearts. 16 But when pone3 turns to the Lord, qthe veil is removed. 17 Now the Lord4 is the Spirit, and where rthe Spirit of the Lord is, there is sfreedom. 18 And we all, with unveiled face, tbeholding uthe glory of the Lord,5 vare being transformed into the same image wfrom one degree of glory to another.6 For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.