I Kings 6:7, "And the house, when it was in building, was built of stone made ready before it was brought thither: so that there was neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron heard in the house, while it was in building."
This morning, many folks bustle along with their lives without giving thought to the Lord's house or service. Then, when Sunday morning rolls around, they give their duty of an hour-and-a-half and hurry out after the "Amen" to get back to their daily life. Then, they wonder why they are so downtrodden, and they seem to feel without the help of the Almighty. The Lord’s service involves more than the time between when singing begins and the prayer of dismissal. There is work, labour, and preparation to be done. Much dedication is required to tune up before arriving at the actual building.
Here, Solomon builds the temple in Jerusalem to the Lord. They laboured on this particular building for seven years before completion. This verse talks about the stonework that went into the building. Notice that when the stones arrive they are already prepared for use. No smith or mason had to do any additional labour before they were set. These stones are representative of us in the kingdom of the Master. We are spoken of as "lively stones" in the kingdom. (I Peter 2:5) So, exactly what does it mean that no work is done when they arrive?
It is our duty to pray earnestly for the Lord's service BEFORE arriving. We pray that the Lord would pour out a measure of His Spirit on the singing, preaching, and praying. We pray that our hearts, minds, and ears would be attuned to listen to His words. Sometimes, I arrive at the Lord's house with mud clinging to me. At other times, I cannot get something off my mind that happened during the week, and as a result, I am not a diligent hearer of the word as it is preached. Perhaps, this state yields to singing the words of a song without thinking about them.
These stones that arrived did have to have work done on them. But, they were made ready beforehand. Our armour given to us may get beat in from time to time in our daily lives. But, our job is to beat it back out and ready ourselves for the battle again. So, what happens if our stone is not prepared, polished, and fit for the building? One of the first things that can happen is that we are the only ones that miss the blessing that the Lord prepared (much like the foolish virgins – Matthew 25). The next thing that can happen (which is far worse) is that our attitude can hinder others in the service from receiving the blessing of the Lord.
When building with stone, what happens when one stone gets out of line? It affects those neighboring stones in direct proximity. Sometimes, the Lord does not work in winds, fires, and earthquakes. (I Kings 19:11-12) Many times, He works in His service in a still small voice that comforts and nourishes the hearts of His children, which we must prepare to hear. Finally, thanks be unto Him that He did all the preparation beforehand necessary for us for that triumphant, glorious building. When we are presented to the Father, we will have no impurity. However, He did that work alone for us, and while we miss the daily blessings from time to time, rest assured that the final glorification will not be missed by any of His, for they are redeemed by His blood.