The Glory of the Lord
When Solomon had finished praying, fire came down
from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory
of the LORD filled the temple. (2 Chronicles 7:1)
The glory of the Lord is His presence. When God
occupies a place, His glory is unmistakably evident! God has high standards for
where He will make His presence known. He does not respond to our whims or come
on our terms.
Solomon longed for God’s presence to be obvious in
the temple that he had painstakingly built for Him. Solomon had spared no
expense or effort in building this magnificent temple as a house for the Lord.
Yet he understood that constructing a spectacular building was no guarantee
that God would choose to inhabit that place. So Solomon prepared himself and
the people in the hope that God would look upon them with favor. The priestly
choir sang and played instruments in reverent praise to God (2 Chron. 5:11–14).
The priests sacrificed so many animals on the altar that they could not count
them (2 Chron. 5:6). Solomon prayed, and when he finished, fire came down from
heaven and consumed their offering. The glory of the Lord filled the temple!
God’s glory was so overpowering in Solomon’s temple that the priests could not
carry on their normal activities (2 Chron. 7:2).
There is no mistaking when God inhabits a place.
God’s glorious presence fills a place, and it is impossible to carry on
business as usual! The New Testament teaches that our lives are temples because
Christ abides in us (1 Cor. 3:16). We cannot assume by this that our lives are
pleasing to Him. Like Solomon, we must thoroughly prepare ourselves so that God
will choose to reveal His presence in our lives. When He does, there will be no
doubt that it is God!