1Chronicles 22:1 ¶ Then David said, This is the house of the LORD God, and this is the altar of the burnt offering for Israel.
As I scanned through the rest of this book, it appears that the focus moves to David’s preparation for Solomon to succeed him as king and complete preparation for the building of the temple.
Verse one is connected to the previous chapter in that David designates the land that he bought from Ornan as the place where the temple is to be built and the altar of burnt offering is to be located. Whether he was told this specifically or just assumed it to be the place of God’s choice is not told us. It would be a natural assumption in my opinion.
There is a verse in Deuteronomy that makes me think this was made known to David by some type of divine revelation. It clearly states that the LORD would choose the specific place in the Promised Land at which they should make their burnt offerings.
Deuteronomy 12:5–7 “But unto the place which the LORD your God shall choose out of all your tribes to put his name there, even unto his habitation shall ye seek, and thither thou shalt come: And thither ye shall bring your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, and your tithes, and heave offerings of your hand, and your vows, and your freewill offerings, and the firstlings of your herds and of your flocks: And there ye shall eat before the LORD your God, and ye shall rejoice in all that ye put your hand unto, ye and your households, wherein the LORD thy God hath blessed thee.”
1Chronicles 22:2 And David commanded to gather together the strangers that were in the land of Israel; and he set masons to hew wrought stones to build the house of God.
1Chronicles 22:3 And David prepared iron in abundance for the nails for the doors of the gates, and for the joinings; and brass in abundance without weight;
1Chronicles 22:4 Also cedar trees in abundance: for the Zidonians and they of Tyre brought much cedar wood to David.
1Chronicles 22:5 And David said, Solomon my son is young and tender, and the house that is to be builded for the LORD must be exceeding magnifical, of fame and of glory throughout all countries: I will therefore now make preparation for it. So David prepared abundantly before his death.
David commanded that the resident aliens in Israel be gathered together, so he could appoint them to work as stonemasons and prepare stones for the building of the house of God. Gill made a good observation regarding the use of Gentiles: “…partly that the Israelites, who were freemen, might not be put to hard service; but chiefly this was for the sake of a mystery in it, denoting that the Gentiles would be concerned in building the spiritual house and church of God, the temple was a type and figure of.”
The king gathered an abundance of iron for nails needed for the doors of the gates and for couplings. He gathered so much brass it couldn’t be weighed. He gathered a great amount of cedar wood as brought to him from the people of Zidon and Tyre.
David reasoned that his son Solomon was yet young and inexperienced, so he wanted to make sure that he realized that the temple should be a thing of beauty and magnificence. The house of the LORD, the self-existent eternal God, should be a building that would be admired far and wide throughout the known world. David gathered a tremendous amount of material to provide for the temple’s construction before his death.
1Chronicles 22:6 ¶ Then he called for Solomon his son, and charged him to build an house for the LORD God of Israel.
1Chronicles 22:7 And David said to Solomon, My son, as for me, it was in my mind to build an house unto the name of the LORD my God:
1Chronicles 22:8 But the word of the LORD came to me, saying, Thou hast shed blood abundantly, and hast made great wars: thou shalt not build an house unto my name, because thou hast shed much blood upon the earth in my sight.
1Chronicles 22:9 Behold, a son shall be born to thee, who shall be a man of rest; and I will give him rest from all his enemies round about: for his name shall be Solomon, and I will give peace and quietness unto Israel in his days.
1Chronicles 22:10 He shall build an house for my name; and he shall be my son, and I will be his father; and I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel for ever.
Knowing that the end of his life was approaching, David called for his son Solomon and told him it was his responsibility to build a house for the LORD God of Israel. He explained that the LORD would not allow him to build it because he had shed so much blood in war. He explained that the LORD had promised that his son Solomon (the name means “peaceful”) would experience a reign marked by peace and quiet, and he would build Him a house. He also promised that he would treat Solomon like a son and establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel forever.
That statement used to trip me up until I learned (I can’t recall from whom) that though the throne of David and Solomon has been empty for many years, it is still a valid position before the LORD. One day Jesus is going to return to earth to take His position as King of kings on that throne in Israel, and His kingdom will endure for eternity.
1Chronicles 22:11 Now, my son, the LORD be with thee; and prosper thou, and build the house of the LORD thy God, as he hath said of thee.
1Chronicles 22:12 Only the LORD give thee wisdom and understanding, and give thee charge concerning Israel, that thou mayest keep the law of the LORD thy God.
1Chronicles 22:13 Then shalt thou prosper, if thou takest heed to fulfil the statutes and judgments which the LORD charged Moses with concerning Israel: be strong, and of good courage; dread not, nor be dismayed.
David then pronounced a blessing upon Solomon. He called for the LORD to be with him and prosper him as he built the house of the LORD “thy God.” David wanted Solomon to experience a close relationship with the LORD as he had. That would only happen if he yielded to the LORD as his God.
David called for the LORD to give Solomon wisdom and understanding as the king of Israel. He also called for Solomon to keep the law of the LORD “thy God.” He told his son that he would prosper if he was faithful to obey the commands of the LORD as delivered to Moses to instruct the people of Israel. David urged Solomon to be strong and of good courage and not to be afraid or discouraged.
David basically charged his son in the same way that the LORD had charged Joshua when he became Israel’s leader after the death of Moses.
Joshua 1:6–7 “Be strong and of a good courage: for unto this people shalt thou divide for an inheritance the land, which I sware unto their fathers to give them. Only be thou strong and very courageous, that thou mayest observe to do according to all the law, which Moses my servant commanded thee: turn not from it to the right hand or to the left, that thou mayest prosper whithersoever thou goest.”
1Chronicles 22:14 Now, behold, in my trouble I have prepared for the house of the LORD an hundred thousand talents of gold, and a thousand thousand talents of silver; and of brass and iron without weight; for it is in abundance: timber also and stone have I prepared; and thou mayest add thereto.
1Chronicles 22:15 Moreover there are workmen with thee in abundance, hewers and workers of stone and timber, and all manner of cunning men for every manner of work.
1Chronicles 22:16 Of the gold, the silver, and the brass, and the iron, there is no number. Arise therefore, and be doing, and the LORD be with thee.
“in my trouble” – The Hebrew references depression and affliction. Maybe this is a reference to his dismay at not being allowed to build the temple and/or the aches and pains of aging.
David told Solomon that he had made preparations for the temple’s construction by gathering supplies that would be needed.
Š 100,000 talents of gold
Š 1,000,000 talents of silver
Š brass and iron in such abundance as could not be weighed
Š timber and stone
The IVP Commentary notes this regarding the gold: “In 1993 the statistics for the world mineral reserve base listed a total of 55,435 tons. The United States Central Bank gold reserve was about 9000 tons. A cube of pure, solid gold that is one foot per side weighs 1200 pounds (worth over $7 million in today’s market). Solomon’s contribution would have filled a standard two-car garage floor to ceiling with such blocks (6250 of them). If the builders would have stacked up blocks such as this they could have built the outer walls of the two main chambers of the temple one foot thick around three sides (with dimensions of 90 by 30 by 30.”
And regarding the silver: “…this is an enormous amount (almost 40,000 tons) and far exceeds anything else from biblical or extrabiblical sources.”
David noted that Solomon would probably still need more. He also told him that there were many workers available for cutting and working with the stone and timber, as well as skilled workers for whatever type of work was needed. He pointed out again that the total supply of gold, silver, brass and iron was beyond measure. He then encouraged his son to get busy.
“Arise and be doing” - This last admonition makes me think that this conversation was held very close to the time of David’s death. Chuck Smith noted that this is how the LORD’s work gets done. We are go get busy serving the LORD with confidence that He is with us in the process when we are serving Him in obedience.
1Chronicles 22:17 ¶ David also commanded all the princes of Israel to help Solomon his son, saying,
1Chronicles 22:18 Is not the LORD your God with you? and hath he not given you rest on every side? for he hath given the inhabitants of the land into mine hand; and the land is subdued before the LORD, and before his people.
1Chronicles 22:19 Now set your heart and your soul to seek the LORD your God; arise therefore, and build ye the sanctuary of the LORD God, to bring the ark of the covenant of the LORD, and the holy vessels of God, into the house that is to be built to the name of the LORD.
David also commanded the recognized leaders of Israel to help Solomon. He reminded them that the LORD “your God” was with them. He had given them rest from their enemies, and the land had been subdued before the LORD and His people.
David strongly encouraged them all to set their hearts and souls (a reference to their whole being) to seek the LORD “their God.” A relationship with the LORD can only be ours if we actively pursue that relationship by choosing to do the things that please Him. To be able to do that, we need to spend time in His word so that we can become familiar with those things.
David commanded them to build the temple, the house of God, and bring the ark of the covenant and the rest of the holy vessels of God (which were in the tabernacle of Moses at Gibeon) to the new temple for use there according to God’s law.
We learn in a future chapter that David actually gave Solomon a plan with detailed instructions that the LORD had given him. (I capitalized spirit because it is an obvious reference to revelation to David through the Holy Spirit.)
1 Chronicles 28:11–13 “Then David gave to Solomon his son the pattern of the porch, and of the houses thereof, and of the treasuries thereof, and of the upper chambers thereof, and of the inner parlours thereof, and of the place of the mercy seat, And the pattern of all that he had by the Spirit, of the courts of the house of the LORD, and of all the chambers round about, of the treasuries of the house of God, and of the treasuries of the dedicated things: Also for the courses of the priests and the Levites, and for all the work of the service of the house of the LORD, and for all the vessels of service in the house of the LORD.”