the Week of Proper 20 / Ordinary 25
Charles Spurgeon's "Morning & Evening"
“God hath blessed the for ever.”
Let us read Psalms 45.
A Psalm in which Solomon is just visible in the background as a type, but the Lord Jesus fills the foreground in the fulness of loveliness and majesty.
No matter can be so good as that which boils up from a warm heart, and has for its subject the King of saints’. The psalmist resolves also to speak only of that which he had made or experienced, for then he felt he could speak fully, deliberately, and wisely, with all the accuracy and force of an accomplished writer. O to have our hearts warm whenever Jesus is the theme! Could we speak of things which we have made our own concerning King Jesus? The question deserves an answer.
He speaks as though he saw the Well-beloved One. The psalmist falls into raptures at the sight. He hears hint speak, and adores him. We shall do the same if he will but reveal himself to us.
This should be our prayer. O Immanuel, the mighty prince, put forth thy power and subdue men to thyself. As Solomon reigned over wide dominions, so also reign thou, O most sweet Prince.
His gospel pierces men’s hearts, and subdues them to his love.
See the divine and human natures here blended in one person. As man the Lord Jesus has his fellows, but as God his throne is for ever and ever. Let us make no mistake upon this vital point, but believe in Jesus as God and man.
The church is arrayed in the best of the best, the righteousness of God. How lovely she is in the loveliness of Jesus!
Psalms 45:10 , Psalms 45:11
The church must be unworldly, and seek first the kingdom of God. Such must each one of us be, and then all other things shall be added unto us, as the next verse teaches.
The Lord grant that in this house there may be kept up a gracious succession. May pious sons follow godly fathers, and may the King of our hearts have servants in this family as long as the world stands.
Jesus can never be forgotten. Solomon is not, but Jesus lives on and reigns on, and shall do for ever and ever; blessed be his name.
The King of saints, how fair his face,
Adorn’d with majesty and grace!
He comes with blessings from above,
And wins the nations to his love.
Let endless honours crown his head;
Let every age his praises spread;
While we with cheerful songs approve
The condescensions of his love.
“Will God indeed dwell on the earth?”
1 Kings 8:1-6 , 1 Kings 8:10 , 1 Kings 8:11 , 1 Kings 8:22-30
1 Kings 8:1
Solomon prepared the temple before he brought the ark to it, and an old writer well observes that before we pray we should prepare our heart that it may be a temple for the Lord.
1 Kings 8:5
They paused on the way at different spots, and offered sacrifices, till, as Josephus tells us, “the ground was moist with drink-offerings and sacrifices.” It was the jubilee year, and the season was the feast of tabernacles, so that the crowds were great, and the joy overflowing. When shall we see the whole earth hold jubilee and adore the ascended Saviour?
1 Kings 8:10 , 1 Kings 8:11
The cloudy pillar was the token of the presence of God, and its filling the sanctuary was a sign of his graciously accepting the temple. We cannot tell whether it was the dazzling brightness, or the deep, portentous darkness, which overwhelmed the minds of the priests, but assuredly it is a glorious thing to have the Lord so present in the midst of his people that all our works become as nothing, and we feel that no longer do we “stand to minister,” but the Lord himself is there.
1 Kings 8:22
He was not a priest, and could not therefore present the sacrifices upon the altar; but as the representative man for the nation he did well to offer up the national prayer.
1 Kings 8:23 , 1 Kings 8:24
Observe how he dwells upon the covenant. It is sweet praying when we can plead the promises.
1 Kings 8:27
So even in the dim light of Judaism it was seen that the Lord dwelleth not in temples made with hands; how astonishing it is that under the Gospel men should still cling to the notion of holy places.
1 Kings 8:30
In our highest joys we have still need to say “forgive.” Our hearts are out of order when that word does not rise to our lips. Let us plead with God to bless us throughout all our lives, and evermore to forgive.