1 Kings 8:43
Hear you in heaven your dwelling place, and do according to all that the stranger calls to you for: that all people of the earth may know your name, to fear you, as do your people Israel; and that they may know that this house, which I have built, is called by your name.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
1 Kings 8:43. Do according to all that the stranger calleth to thee for — That is, so far as is agreeable to thy word and will. It is observable, that his prayer for the stranger is more large and comprehensive than for the Israelites; that thereby he might both show his public spirit, and encourage strangers to the worship of the true God. Thus early were the indications of God’s favour toward the sinners of the Gentiles. As there was then one law for the native and for the stranger, so there was one gospel for both. That all the people of the earth may know thy name — Hereby we learn how sincerely and heartily the ancient and godly Jews desired the conversion of the Gentiles; whereas the latter and degenerate Jews, in the days of Christ and of the apostles, out of pride, envy, and malice, opposed and fretted at it. That they may know that this house is called by thy name — Is owned not only by us, but by thyself as thy house; the only place in the world to which thou wilt vouchsafe thy special presence and protection, and where thou wilt be publicly and solemnly worshipped.8:22-53 In this excellent prayer, Solomon does as we should do in every prayer; he gives glory to God. Fresh experiences of the truth of God's promises call for larger praises. He sues for grace and favour from God. The experiences we have of God's performing his promises, should encourage us to depend upon them, and to plead them with him; and those who expect further mercies, must be thankful for former mercies. God's promises must be the guide of our desires, and the ground of our hopes and expectations in prayer. The sacrifices, the incense, and the whole service of the temple, were all typical of the Redeemer's offices, oblation, and intercession. The temple, therefore, was continually to be remembered. Under one word, forgive, Solomon expressed all that he could ask in behalf of his people. For, as all misery springs from sin, forgiveness of sin prepares the way for the removal of every evil, and the receiving of every good. Without it, no deliverance can prove a blessing. In addition to the teaching of the word of God, Solomon entreated the Lord himself to teach the people to profit by all, even by their chastisements. They shall know every man the plague of his own heart, what it is that pains him; and shall spread their hands in prayer toward this house; whether the trouble be of body or mind, they shall represent it before God. Inward burdens seem especially meant. Sin is the plague of our own hearts; our in-dwelling corruptions are our spiritual diseases: every true Israelite endeavours to know these, that he may mortify them, and watch against the risings of them. These drive him to his knees; lamenting these, he spreads forth his hands in prayer. After many particulars, Solomon concludes with the general request, that God would hearken to his praying people. No place, now, under the gospel, can add to the prayers made in or towards it. The substance is Christ; whatever we ask in his name, it shall be given us. In this manner the Israel of God is established and sanctified, the backslider is recovered and healed. In this manner the stranger is brought nigh, the mourner is comforted, the name of God is glorified. Sin is the cause of all our troubles; repentance and forgiveness lead to all human happiness.That all people of the earth may know thy name, to fear thee - Solomon prays that the result of Yahweh's hearing the prayers of pagans addressed toward the temple may be the general conversion of the world to the worship of Him. Compare Psalm 96:1-13; Psalm 98:1-9.

This house ... - literally, as in the margin. In Scripture, when God's Name is said to be "called upon" persons or things, it seems to be meant that God is really present in them, upholding them and sanctifying them. This passage therefore means, that the pagan, when their prayers, directed toward the temple, are granted, will have a full assurance that God is present in the building in some very special way.

1Ki 8:22-61. His Prayer.

22. Solomon stood before the altar—This position was in the court of the people, on a brazen scaffold erected for the occasion (2Ch 6:13), fronting the altar of burnt offering, and surrounded by a mighty concourse of people. Assuming the attitude of a suppliant, kneeling (1Ki 8:54; compare 2Ch 6:24) and with uplifted hands, he performed the solemn act of consecration—an act remarkable, among other circumstances, for this, that it was done, not by the high priest or any member of the Aaronic family, but by the king in person, who might minister about, though not in, holy things. This sublime prayer [1Ki 8:22-35], which breathes sentiments of the loftiest piety blended with the deepest humility, naturally bore a reference to the national blessing and curse contained in the law—and the burden of it—after an ascription of praise to the Lord for the bestowment of the former, was an earnest supplication for deliverance from the latter. He specifies seven cases in which the merciful interposition of God would be required; and he earnestly bespeaks it on the condition of people praying towards that holy place. The blessing addressed to the people at the close is substantially a brief recapitulation of the preceding prayer [1Ki 8:56-61].

Do according to all that the stranger calleth to thee for, to wit, agreeable to thy will and word; for he would not have them heard, if they had prayed for any thing dishonourable to God, or destructive to his people. It is observable, that his prayer for the strangers is more large and comprehensive than for the Israelites, that thereby he might both show his public spiritedness, and encourage strangers to the worship of the true God.

That all people may know thy fame, to fear thee, as do thy people Israel; whereby we see how sincerely and heartily the ancient and godly Jews desired the conversion of the Gentiles; whereas the latter and degenerate Jews, in the days of Christ and of the apostles, did envy, oppose it, and fret at it.

Is called by thy name, i.e. is owned, not only by us, but by thyself, as thy house; the only place in the world to which thou wilt vouchsafe thy presence and protection, and wherein thou wilt be publicly and solemnly served. Hear thou in heaven thy dwellingplace,.... The prayer of the stranger:

and do according to all that the stranger calleth to thee for; which were consistent with the will of God and his glory, and for the good of the stranger; this is more absolutely and unconditionally expressed than the requests for the Israelites; it is not desired that he would do by them according to their ways, and if they turned from their sins, or knew the plague of their hearts; the reason of which is supposed to be, because the Israelites knew the will of God, when the strangers did not; and therefore it is desired that, notwithstanding their ignorance, and their non-compliance with the divine will, through that, they might be heard and answered:

that all people of the earth may know thy name, to fear thee, as do thy people Israel; might know him to be a God, hearing and answering prayer, forgiving sin, and bestowing favours, which might lead them to fear him and his goodness, as Israel did:

and that they may know that this house, which I have builded, is called by thy name; that he dwelt in it, granted his presence, heard and received the supplications of men, answered their requests, and accepted of their sacrifices here. Solomon seems to have had knowledge of the calling of the Gentiles, and to desire it.

Hear thou in heaven thy dwelling place, and do according to all that the stranger calleth to thee for: that all people of the earth may know thy name, to fear thee, as do thy people Israel; and that they may know that this house, which I have builded, is called by thy {q} name.

(q) That this is the true religion with which you will be worshipped.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
43. that this house … is called by thy name] The literal rendering of the Hebrew ‘that thy name is called upon this house,’ though not so good English, brings out more of the true notion of the words viz., that God has taken up His abode there, and that there men may approach very near unto Him.Verse 43. - Hear thou in heaven thy dwell-lug place, and do according to an that the stranger calleth to thee for: that all people of the earth may know thy name [It is interesting to notice this foreshadowing of the inclusion of the Gentiles in the one fold. The same thought is found in some of the Psalms and in Isaiah, as St. Paul witnesses (Romans 15:9 sqq.) Cf. Psalm 22:27; Psalm 72:11; Psalm 86:9; Psalm 98:3; Psalm 102:15; Psalm 117:1; Isaiah 49:6; Isaiah 52:10] to fear thee, as do thy people Israel; and that they may know that this house, which I have builded, is called by thy name. [Heb. that thy name is called (or, has been called, נִקְרָא. LXX. ἐπικέκληται) upon this house, i.e., that God has taken this house for His habitation: that He dwells there, works, hears, answers there. Same expression, Jeremiah 7:10, 11, 14; Jeremiah 25:29; Deuteronomy 28:10; Isaiah 4:1. In Numbers 6:27 we have, "they shall put my name upon the children of Israel." In Deuteronomy 12:5, and Deuteronomy 16:6 (cf. 1 Kings 11:36), we read of the place God has "chosen to put his name there." So far the royal suppliant has spoken of prayers offered in or at the temple. He now mentions two cases where supplications will be offered by penitents far distant from the holy city or even from the Holy Land. And first, he speaks of the armies of Israel on a campaign. The fourth prayer relates to the removal of other land-plagues: famine (Leviticus 26:19-20, and Leviticus 26:26; Deuteronomy 28:23); pestilence (Leviticus 26:25); blight and mildew in the corn (Deuteronomy 28:22); locusts (חסיל, devourer, is connected with ארבּה without a copula, - in the Chronicles by Vv, - to depict the plague of locusts more vividly before their eyes after Deuteronomy 28:38); oppression by enemies in their own land; lastly, plagues and diseases of all kinds, such as are threatened against the rebellious in Leviticus 26:16 and Deuteronomy 28:59-61. יצר is not the imperfect Kal of צוּר (Ges., Dietr., Frst, Olsh. Gramm. p. 524), but the imperfect Hiphil of הצר in Deuteronomy 28:52, as in Nehemiah 9:27; and the difficult expression שׁעריו בּארץ is probably to be altered into שׁ בּארץ, whilst שׁעריו is either to be taken as a second object to יצר, as Luther supposes, or as in apposition to בּארץ, in the land (in) his gates, as Bertheau assumes. The assertion of Thenius, that all the versions except the Vulgate are founded upon the reading עריו בּעחת, is incorrect. יהיה כּי is omitted after kaal-machalaah, since Solomon dropped the construction with which he commenced, and therefore briefly summed up all the prayers, addressed to God under the various chastisements here named, in the expression כּל־תּחנּה כּל־תּפלּה, which is placed absolutely at the opening of 1 Kings 8:38. וגו ידעוּן אשׁר, "when they perceive each one the stroke of his heart," i.e., not dolor animi quem quisque sentit (Vatab., C. a Lap.), but the plague regarded as a blow falling upon the heart, in other words, as a chastisement inflicted upon him by God. In all these cases may God hear his prayer, and do and give to every one according to his way. תּדע אשׁר, "as Thou knowest his heart," i.e., as is profitable for every one according to the state of his heart of his disposition. God can do this, because He knows the hearts of all men (cf. Jeremiah 17:10). The purpose assigned for all this hearing of prayer (1 Kings 8:40), viz., "that they may fear Thee," etc., is the same as in Deuteronomy 4:10.
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