Day 132: According to the specifications (2 Chronicles 1-5)

Posted: August 10, 2010 in Uncategorized

There was a small, obscure verse just kind of tucked away in the middle of my reading tonight. A little nugget within a gem of a simple statement that suddenly began to stick out like an exploding light bulb. As I started in on 2 Chronicles tonight, I was looking forward to revisiting Solomon’s reign and the building of the temple, as well as his request for wisdom, both of which I could have written about tonight. Instead, this little phrase within a verse kept poking at me. Here’s the verse I stumbled upon, with the phrase within it highlighted for you.

He made ten gold lampstands according to the specifications for them and placed them in the temple, five on the south side and five on the north. 2 Chronicles 4:7

Catch that? Those four little words mean so much. “According to the specifications.” In the building of the temple, it was paramount that everything was done to the exact specifications ordered by the previous king, David, to make it the ultimate house of God. The builders could have gone off on tangents, inserted their own little instances of creativity here and there. Perhaps some images from their own imaginations? Maybe some colors that don’t match? How about a couple stones here and there that aren’t supposed to be there? The very act of building the temple was an act of worship, so making mistakes, varying from the specifications, are deviating from the plan in any way would have violated the sanctity of the temple! It was very important that every last detail was perfect according to the specifications – how can we argue with the results? I wish there was a full-scale replica of this thing standing today somewhere nearby, because something tells me the place would leave me awestruck. The temple was a fitting place to worship God. The talents of everyone involved were stretched to the max in worship to the LORD.

It reminds me about how important it is for us Christians not to deviate from “the specifications.” Which specifications do you speak of? I speak of the specifications spelled out clearly for us in the Bible! Of course! Practically speaking, there will be times where we are allowed to express our creativity and use our own ideas to worship God in our own way, but when these ideas start to add to, or even start to oppose God’s teachings, that’s when the rulebook comes out! For our best results, always follow God’s instructions to the letter. The Ten Commandments, for example, are called “commandments” for a reason. They aren’t called “The Ten Suggestions,” or “The Ten Loose Guidelines.” There is no “maybe” clauses or hypothetical loopholes in God’s instruction manual.

In the building of the temple, every little detail came together to make a magnificent masterpiece, probably one of the greatest architectural, artistic and beautiful creations this Earth has ever seen or ever will see again. Each detail was carried out according to the instructions set forth by God, and in the end, God blessed it beyond measure. In our own lives, if we follow God’s specifications to the letter, imagine what beautiful things God can do through you!

Today, I’m praying for a life lived “according to the specifications” of God! Time to get out that instruction manual!

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