Where God's Temple Is Built
(2 Chronicles 3:1) Then Solomon began to build the house of the LORD at Jerusalem in mount Moriah, where the LORD appeared unto David his father, in the place that David had prepared in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite. King David had desired to build a house for God, something that he thought appropriate for the mighty God of Jacob (PSA 132:1-5). Even though he had already brought the ark of God to Jerusalem to be set in the midst of a tabernacle that he built for it (2SAM 6:17) he did not want to stop at that; he was grieved that he should dwell in a nice house of cedar while the ark of God dwelt within curtains (2SAM 7:2). When he was in power, rest and wealth, David did what many well-intentioned believers who come into such circumstances think they should do: build something grandiose for God's glory, something God hadn't asked for nor needed. See God's response to David's idea in 2SAM 7:4-7. God did, though, go along with the idea but would not let David build that house because he was a man of war who had shed much blood; the building of it would fall to Solomon (1CH 28:2-6), whose name means “peace.” That Solomon's temple for God should be built in the threshingfloor of Ornan the Jebusite is noteworthy. David had sinned by taking an unauthorized census of the people and expiation for that sin by a burnt offering was commanded by God to be performed in that place (2SAM 24:1-25; 1CH 21:1-30). The temple of the living God, therefore, would be built in the very place where sin was put away, an apt preview of the building of the New Testament church in the very city where Jesus Christ “...put away sin by the sacrifice of himself” (HEB 9:26). It was in Jerusalem that the disciples of Christ were to tarry until they were endued with power from on high (LUK 24:46-49), in fulfillment of which the Holy Ghost fell upon the infant church there to empower it (ACT 2:1-4). That institution is God's temple (1CO 3:16), “...an habitation of God through the Spirit” (EPH 2:19-22), the building of which began where sin was put away by sacrifice. That pattern continues in the building of gospel churches through evangelism where converts become lively stones (1PE 2:5); the call to sinners is “...Repent, and be baptized...” (ACT 2:38). The sinner's sins and will must be put away prior to construction. It may also be observed that if a sinner's heart be prepared by repentance, Christ is willing to build a temple there. He does, after all, require a clean temple (JOH 2:13-17). To the person who forsakes the world for the Word, He says, “...If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him” (JOH 14:23). Paul prayed for believers “That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith...” (EPH 3:17). This dwelling place is improved “...by the word of his grace, which is able to build you up...” (ACT 20:32). Our text today also notes that the building of the temple for God began in mount Moriah, a name which means “seen of Jah” (the mighty Creator). It was in Moriah where Abraham in obedience to God (GEN 22:1-2) virtually offered a submissive Isaac, his only begotten son (HEB 11:17). There God saw the fullness of Abraham's faith and provided a ram as a substitute, “And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovah-jireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the Lord it shall be seen” (GEN 22:14). This was arguably the greatest example of faith in the Old Testament and that place became “ground-zero” for the temple. The building of God's house must ever be on the foundation of the sacrifice of the only begotten Son (JOH 3:16), of “...Jesus Christ, and him crucified” (1CO 2:2), the faithful Son Who, like Abraham's son, was obedient unto death (PHIL 2:8) for the putting away of sin. There God saw the travail of his soul and was satisfied (ISA 53:11). “For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ” (1CO 3:11).