And the king turned his face, and blessed the whole congregation of Israel: and all the congregation of Israel stood.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)And the king.—The verse is word for word as in Kings.
Turned.—Turned round (1Chronicles 10:14).
2Ch 6:1-41. Solomon Blesses the People and Praises God.
1. The Lord hath said that he would dwell in the thick darkness—This introduction to Solomon's address was evidently suggested by the remarkable incident recorded at the close of the last chapter: the phenomenon of a densely opaque and uniformly shaped cloud, descending in a slow and majestic manner and filling the whole area of the temple. He regarded it himself, and directed the people also to regard it, as an undoubted sign and welcome pledge of the divine presence and acceptance of the building reared to His honor and worship. He referred not to any particular declaration of God, but to the cloud having been all along in the national history of Israel the recognized symbol of the divine presence (Ex 16:10; 24:16; 40:34; Nu 9:15; 1Ki 8:10, 11).And the king turned his face, and blessed the whole congregation of Israel: and all the congregation of Israel stood.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verse 3. - Reading between the lines, this verse shows us that the face of Solomon had been turned to the symbol of God's presence, while he addressed to him the words of our second verse, since he now faces round to the assembly of the congregation. What words Solomon used in thus blessing the whole congregation are not given either here or in the parallel. The impression one takes is that the blessing was, in fact, wrapt up tacitly in all that Solomon recounts, when he said, Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, etc. (ver. 4). However, it is not impossible that, with the variation of the tense in ver. 59, the verses of 1 Kings 8:55 - 61 may contain the substance of it, if not itself. 2 Chronicles 5:11-13 describe the part which the priests and Levitical singers and musicians took in the solemn act of transferring the ark to the temple-a matter entirely passed over in the narrative in 1 Kings 8:11, which confines itself to the main transaction. The mention of the priests gives occasion for the remark, 2 Chronicles 5:11, "for all the priests present had sanctified themselves, but the courses were not to be observed," i.e., the courses of the priests (1 Chronicles 24) could not be observed. The festival was so great, that not merely the course appointed to perform the service of that week, but also all the courses had sanctified themselves and co-operated in the celebration. In reference to the construction לשׁמור אין, cf. Ew. 321, b.
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