The first reading, from the First Book of Kings, was compiled by servants of the kings; and they were not allowed to put the kings in a bad light. When they told us that Solomon had a thousand wives and concubines they were not telling us that was a religious way to live. They were just using that as a measure of Solomon's greatness.
When they tell us that steers and sheep without number were sacrificed before the Ark, we are take that to mean that Solomon was giving his people one wonderful barbecue.
In Chapter Twenty-five of Exodus we are given a picture of a portable Ark. But in today's reading the Ark was transformed into the heart of the permanent temple. As was the case when the Ark was first assembled, so here too, when it was given its central position in the temple, the cloud of God's presence filled it.