THE FOUNDATION OF THE HOUSE
"Then Solomon began to build the house of the Lord at Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where the Lord appeared unto David his father, which he made ready in the place that David had appointed, in the threshing-floor of Ornan the Jebusite" (2 Chron. 3:1).
We are going to take a look at the importance of the foundation of the house of God. Please keep in mind that first we have the shadow and type in the Old Testament, and then we have the fulfillment and reality in the New Testament. The Tabernacle, and then the Temple is the shadow in the Old Testament. The church is the fulfillment and reality as revealed in the New Testament.
Zeal for the House
David was referred to as "a man after God's own heart." But can you tell me why? Psalm 132 tells us.
"Remember, O Lord, on David's behalf, All his affliction; How he swore to the Lord, And vowed to the Mighty One of Jacob, 'Surely, I will not enter my house, Nor lie on my bed; I will not give sleep to my eyes, Or slumber to my eyelids; Until I find a place for the Lord, A dwelling place for the Mighty One of Jacob'" (Ps. 132:1-5).
"For zeal for Thy house has consumed me" (Ps. 69:9).
David had a driving passion to see the Lord get His house. David, of course, is a type of Christ. The Lord Jesus had this burning desire for the Father's house (John 2:17). This desperate desire is part of what is required in the building of God's house. The foundation of a house is made with concrete. Part of that mix is this burning desire or passion for the Father's house. The temple lay in ruins for many years because no one really cared about the house of the Lord. He sent prophets to speak to Israel about their lack of concern, but it wasn't until Nehemiah and Ezra were sent to them that anything happened. Those men were able to instill within the people the zeal for His house, which moved them to action and the rebuilding of the temple began.
Faith and Obedience
Did you ever realize that the temple was built upon Mt. Moriah? Remember Mt. Moriah? That is where Abraham went up to sacrifice his son, Isaac.
Please understand that all of Abraham's hopes and dreams were centered in Isaac. All of his expectations, the promises, and the covenant with God, they were all wrapped up with Isaac. You could even say that Abraham's "vision" given to him by God about his seed becoming like the stars in the sky, that was all wrapped up in Isaac. Without Isaac, Abraham had nothing. Not only that, but Abraham had waited for Isaac for over thirty years! He had gone through many painful lessons during that time including the one with Hagar and Ishmael. He had learned the cost of moving under the power of his own nature and ambition. He had learned the costly lesson of trying to implement God's calling and God's gifts using his own power, will, and methods. He had now, finally, learned to wait upon the Lord and let God do it all. And He was faithful to do it. But now God tells him to go and sacrifice all of that on Mt. Moriah! Go up there Abraham and lay it all in the dust!
This is the kind of thing that our God does. This is the kind of "material" that the "House" is built upon. The Church cannot be built without a foundation of faith and obedience. The substance of the foundation must be solid.
Consider the Cost
No house is built without a cost. How much will it cost to build this house? How much did it cost Abraham on Mt. Moriah? How much did it cost another "master builder," Paul of Tarsus? The answer is obvious. It costs everything!
Those who set themselves to walk in such a manner as to fulfill the eternal purpose of God will always pay a very high price. Was Paul the only one to pay a high price for the building of the house in Philippi? Was he the only one to pay for the building of the house in Thessalonica? No, the saints also had to pay a high price to see those churches raised up. Besides the persecution that some of the these churches went through, there were also the daily struggles of living together with a close knit group of people; learning to know one another after the spirit instead of after the flesh, taking Christ as their only life and center. Learning to live and function under His headship. All of these things were very costly to the saints in those churches.
The Only True Foundation
Did I mention that the temple was built upon Mt. Moriah? The picture here is awesome. The story of Abraham sacrificing Isaac is of course, ultimately, a type and foreshadow of Calvary. The Father paid the highest price of all by sacrificing His only begotten Son. As we have seen in the previous examples, the house of God is always built upon the laying down of life. At Calvary, the Son of Man/Son of God willingly laid His life down to build a temple. There had to be a rock. The temple must be built upon a rock. And that Rock is Christ.
Here is the One who is the fulfillment of Abraham, and Isaac, and Paul, and all the others. Here is the One Who is the fulfillment of the Law. He is the One Who is the fulfillment of all the prophets and all the scriptures. Here is the Rock Who provides the water of His life for all of us to drink. And that wonderful life was laid down on Calvary in order to build a Temple!