2 Chronicles 6:18
But will God in very deed dwell with men on the earth? behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain you…
The temple of King Solomon has sown its seeds all over the world; has reproduced itself in every latitude and zone. "But will God in every deed dwell with men upon the earth?" Do we want the temple now? There are many men living today who could with truth make answer, "As far as we ourselves and our spiritual life are concerned, "No! We have outgrown the Testament; Christ is our temple, our way to God. Through the great mercy and grace of God, and His perpetual help, we have risen to that constancy and closeness of fellowship with Him that every place is holy ground; and we often find, in our solitude, a sweetness and depth of joyful communing that we never find amid the distraction of a public assembly." To them God does indeed "dwell with men upon the earth," but not in temples made with hands; they walk in the Spirit, and live in the Spirit. But was it always so with them? Did they never want the temple? Was it always as easy to them to find God in the street as it is now? Who of us, that can rejoice in this as his portion to-day, can tell how much he owes of his present realisation of God at all times, and in all places, to those temple walls which now have vanished from his spiritual sight? As in learning our first lessons, our letters, and the like, we are learning things whose use we know not yet, though by and by the alphabet and spelling-book are laid aside, so in the beginning of our spiritual life this temple is our alphabet and primer, where we do things that are not always full of our spirit, nor of our intelligence; but in process of time we grow up to them; we rise up to the spirit and comprehension of our own deed; and by and by the temple is not necessary to us for our own sakes, save as the voice of truth shall sound within its walls, and we go on learning the things which are our life. But are these the men who forsake the assembling of themselves together, "as the manner of some is"? No! They know that the temple wants them, if they do not want the temple; that they are the spiritual material of which the temple is composed; and that their presence and part in its worship is essential to the fulfilment of its end. Their hearts make the atmosphere that infects all weaker souls; their songs are the wings on which the younger and feebler ones rise up to God. They, with their temple and service of song, and their lowly prayers, are mighty antidotes — how mighty, God only knows! — to that perilous movement of the world's life that would soon drag humanity down to the level of the dust, and blend our godless life with that of the beasts of the earth.
(G. W. Conder.)
Parallel VersesKJV: But will God in very deed dwell with men on the earth? behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house which I have built!