And David assembled all the princes of Israel, the princes of the tribes, and the captains of the companies that ministered to the king by course, and the captains over the thousands, and captains over the hundreds, and the stewards over all the substance and possession of the king, and of his sons, with the officers, and with the mighty men, and with all the valiant men, unto Jerusalem.
Officer - literally, as in the margin. This is the only occasion in which eunuchs are mentioned in connection with David's reign; and it is to be remarked that they occupy, during the earlier period of the Jewish kingdom, a very subordinate position.
Then David the king stood up upon his feet, and said, Hear me, my brethren, and my people: As for me, I had in mine heart to build an house of rest for the ark of the covenant of the LORD, and for the footstool of our God, and had made ready for the building:
My brethren - David retains the modest phrase of a king not born in the purple, but raised from the ranks of the people (see 1 Samuel 30:23; 2 Samuel 19:12). No later Jewish monarch would have thus addressed his subjects.
The footstool of our God - David views the ark as God's "footstool," because he was enthroned above it visibly in the Shechinah, or luminous cloud, present from time to time above the mercy seat and between the cherubim (compare the marginal references).
But God said unto me, Thou shalt not build an house for my name, because thou hast been a man of war, and hast shed blood.
Howbeit the LORD God of Israel chose me before all the house of my father to be king over Israel for ever: for he hath chosen Judah to be the ruler; and of the house of Judah, the house of my father; and among the sons of my father he liked me to make me king over all Israel:
And of all my sons, (for the LORD hath given me many sons,) he hath chosen Solomon my son to sit upon the throne of the kingdom of the LORD over Israel.
And he said unto me, Solomon thy son, he shall build my house and my courts: for I have chosen him to be my son, and I will be his father.
Besides the message sent to David through Nathan, he had a revelation, of which we have only the indirect account given here and in 1 Chronicles 22:8-10 (see the note). He was told that one of his sons should be raised up to fill his throne after him, and should build the temple. In the second revelation it was distinctly declared to him that the son intended was Solomon.
My house and my courts - i. e., the temple and the courts of the temple (see 2 Chronicles 4:9).
Moreover I will establish his kingdom for ever, if he be constant to do my commandments and my judgments, as at this day.
If he be constant - The conditional character of the promise made to David, as to the continuance of his posterity on the Jewish throne (marginal reference; 2 Samuel 7:14), is now clearly declared.
Now therefore in the sight of all Israel the congregation of the LORD, and in the audience of our God, keep and seek for all the commandments of the LORD your God: that ye may possess this good land, and leave it for an inheritance for your children after you for ever.
And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the LORD searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever.
Know thou the God of thy father - "Knowing God," in the sense of having a religious trust in Him, is an unusual phrase in the earlier Scriptures. It scarcely occurs elsewhere in the historical books. David, however, uses the phrase in his Psalms Psa 36:10; and its occurrence here may be accepted as evidence that the entire speech is recorded in the actual words of the monarch.
Take heed now; for the LORD hath chosen thee to build an house for the sanctuary: be strong, and do it.
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,
Compare 1 Chronicles 28:19. As God had revealed to Moses the pattern of the tabernacle Exodus 26; 27, so He had made known by revelation to David the pattern of the temple and its furniture. This pattern, which consisted of a set of directions in writing, David now handed over to Solomon.
The houses - The "holy place" and the "holy of holies " - called respectively "the house" and the "inner house" 1 Kings 6:17, 1 Kings 6:27, and 2 Chronicles 3:5, 2 Chronicles 3:8 "the greater house" and "the most holy house."
The upper chambers - Compare 2 Chronicles 3:9 note.
The inner parlours - The small rooms of the "lean-to" (1 Kings 6:5 note), entered one from another.
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:
The pattern ... - literally, "the pattern of all that was with him in the spirit;" perhaps to be paraphrased, "the form of all that floated before his mind." It seems to be David's spirit, not God's Spirit, that is here spoken of.
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.
He gave of gold by weight for things of gold, for all instruments of all manner of service; silver also for all instruments of silver by weight, for all instruments of every kind of service:
Even the weight for the candlesticks of gold, and for their lamps of gold, by weight for every candlestick, and for the lamps thereof: and for the candlesticks of silver by weight, both for the candlestick, and also for the lamps thereof, according to the use of every candlestick.
And by weight he gave gold for the tables of shewbread, for every table; and likewise silver for the tables of silver:
Also pure gold for the fleshhooks, and the bowls, and the cups: and for the golden basons he gave gold by weight for every bason; and likewise silver by weight for every bason of silver:
And for the altar of incense refined gold by weight; and gold for the pattern of the chariot of the cherubims, that spread out their wings, and covered the ark of the covenant of the LORD.
The chariot of the cherubims - The cherubim are themselves the chariot upon which Yahweh rides Psalm 18:10; Psalm 99:1.
All this, said David, the LORD made me understand in writing by his hand upon me, even all the works of this pattern.
And David said to Solomon his son, Be strong and of good courage, and do it: fear not, nor be dismayed: for the LORD God, even my God, will be with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee, until thou hast finished all the work for the service of the house of the LORD.
And, behold, the courses of the priests and the Levites, even they shall be with thee for all the service of the house of God: and there shall be with thee for all manner of workmanship every willing skilful man, for any manner of service: also the princes and all the people will be wholly at thy commandment.