“Whatever prayer, whatever plea is made by any man … 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 …” (v29-30). Solomon’s dedication prayer called on God to remember His covenant, His special relationship with Israel, which was now symbolized by Jerusalem’s Temple. When people prayed “toward this house,” they were praying toward Israel’s God, who had shown Himself to be holy, faithful, and merciful.
Solomon prayed that Israel would fear God and walk in His ways (v31). Their most precious gift was not a Temple or land, but the privilege of knowing and being known by the God of Abraham.