1 Kings 8:23 (ESV)

23 and said, “O LORD, God of Israel, there is no God like you, in heaven above or on earth beneath, keeping covenant and showing steadfast love to your servants who walk before you with all their heart;

In this verse, the prayer begins with an address to God in words of adoration. Adoration is the best way to begin any prayer. God deserves our praise and adoration, whatever our circumstances. He is the eternal One and at our best we are a mere breath, as the psalmist tells us in Psalm 39:6. Furthermore, he created us for himself. We should not think that God is obligated in any way to place his primary concern on us or on our circumstances. His care and lovingkindness come from pure grace, and it is nothing that we deserve.

Solomon continues in his prayer to speak of the uniqueness of God. He says to him that there is no one like God at all. No one is like him in heaven or on Earth. Someone may ask, In what way is God unique? For many worship, even at the present day, a multitude of gods. There is a long answer to this question that would take too much time to discuss. This is so because it would necessitate a full description of God’s perfections. There is, nonetheless, a short answer to the question! This answer is that he is the true and living God! All whom men call god or gods apart, from the God of the Bible, are neither true gods nor living gods.

The beginning of Solomon’s prayer in his praise and adoration of the one and only God sets the stage for the rest of the prayer. This means that what follows will be a supplication and not a demand, and it shows that humility is the clothing that we ought to wear when we approach God. Solomon was a great king by the standards of his era, but when he approached God, he approached him on his knees with his hands spread out and with words of humble adoration, setting God infinitely higher than himself.