After Solomon had completed the building of the temple in Jerusalem, he stood before the people of Israel and prayed to God, “If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence or blight or mildew or locust or caterpillar, if their enemies besiege them in the land at their gates, whatever plague, whatever sickness there is, whatever prayer, whatever plea is made by any man or by all your people Israel, each knowing his own affliction and his own sorrow and stretching out his hands toward this house, then hear from heaven your dwelling place and forgive and render to each whose heart you know, according to all his ways, for you, you only, know the hearts of the children of mankind, that they may fear you and walk in your ways all the days that they live in the land that you gave to our fathers.”
“Likewise, when a foreigner, who is not of your people Israel, comes from a far country for the sake of your great name and your mighty hand and your outstretched arm, when he comes and prays toward this house, hear from heaven your dwelling place and do according to all for which the foreigner calls you, in order that all the peoples of the earth may know your name and fear you, as do your people Israel, and that they may know that this house that I have built is called by your name.” 2 Chronicles 6:28-31.
As I read this prayer, I can’t help but think of the current virus plague that is rapidly spreading over the face of the earth. As I ponder Solomon’s words, it is my prayer that all the people of the earth, those who know God and those who are foreigners to the house of God, will fall on their knees and pray. Pray to the God of the universe in this time of crises. As Solomon said, “In order that all peoples of the earth may know your name and fear you.”
After Solomon’s prayer and dedication of the temple, God appeared to Solomon and said to him, “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2 Chronicles 7:14.
In the New Testament, God reaches out to the world through Christ. John 3:16 sums up the steadfast love of God for mankind. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”