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1 Kings 5New King James Version (NKJV)

Solomon Prepares to Build the Temple

Now Hiram king of Tyre sent his servants to Solomon, because he heard that they had anointed him king in place of his father, for Hiram had always loved David. Then Solomon sent to Hiram, saying:

You know how my father David could not build a house for the name of the Lord his God because of the wars which were fought against him on every side, until the Lord put his foes[a] under the soles of his feet.

But now the Lord my God has given me rest on every side; there is neither adversary nor evil occurrence.

And behold, I propose to build a house for the name of the Lord my God, as the Lord spoke to my father David, saying, “Your son, whom I will set on your throne in your place, he shall build the house for My name.”

Now therefore, command that they cut down cedars for me from Lebanon; and my servants will be with your servants, and I will pay you wages for your servants according to whatever you say. For you know there is none among us who has skill to cut timber like the Sidonians.

So it was, when Hiram heard the words of Solomon, that he rejoiced greatly and said,

Blessed be the Lord this day, for He has given David a wise son over this great people!

Then Hiram sent to Solomon, saying:

I have considered the message which you sent me, and I will do all you desire concerning the cedar and cypress logs.

My servants shall bring them down from Lebanon to the sea; I will float them in rafts by sea to the place you indicate to me, and will have them broken apart there; then you can take them away. And you shall fulfill my desire by giving food for my household.

10 Then Hiram gave Solomon cedar and cypress logs according to all his desire. 11 And Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand kors of wheat as food for his household, and twenty[b] kors of pressed oil. Thus Solomon gave to Hiram year by year.

12 So the Lord gave Solomon wisdom, as He had promised him; and there was peace between Hiram and Solomon, and the two of them made a treaty together.

13 Then King Solomon raised up a labor force out of all Israel; and the labor force was thirty thousand men. 14 And he sent them to Lebanon, ten thousand a month in shifts: they were one month in Lebanon and two months at home; Adoniram was in charge of the labor force. 15 Solomon had seventy thousand who carried burdens, and eighty thousand who quarried stone in the mountains, 16 besides three thousand three hundred[c] from the chiefs of Solomon’s deputies, who supervised the people who labored in the work. 17 And the king commanded them to quarry large stones, costly stones, and hewn stones, to lay the foundation of the temple.[d] 18 So Solomon’s builders, Hiram’s builders, and the Gebalites quarried them; and they prepared timber and stones to build the temple.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Kings 5:3 Literally them
  2. 1 Kings 5:11 Following Masoretic Text, Targum, and Vulgate; Septuagint and Syriac read twenty thousand.
  3. 1 Kings 5:16 Following Masoretic Text, Targum, and Vulgate; Septuagint reads three thousand six hundred.
  4. 1 Kings 5:17 Literally house, and so frequently throughout this book
New King James Version (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

1 Kings 5New International Version (NIV)

Preparations for Building the Temple

[a]When Hiram king of Tyre heard that Solomon had been anointed king to succeed his father David, he sent his envoys to Solomon, because he had always been on friendly terms with David. Solomon sent back this message to Hiram:

“You know that because of the wars waged against my father David from all sides, he could not build a temple for the Name of the Lord his God until the Lord put his enemies under his feet. But now the Lord my God has given me rest on every side, and there is no adversary or disaster. I intend, therefore, to build a temple for the Name of the Lord my God, as the Lord told my father David, when he said, ‘Your son whom I will put on the throne in your place will build the temple for my Name.’

“So give orders that cedars of Lebanon be cut for me. My men will work with yours, and I will pay you for your men whatever wages you set. You know that we have no one so skilled in felling timber as the Sidonians.”

When Hiram heard Solomon’s message, he was greatly pleased and said, “Praise be to the Lord today, for he has given David a wise son to rule over this great nation.”

So Hiram sent word to Solomon:

“I have received the message you sent me and will do all you want in providing the cedar and juniper logs. My men will haul them down from Lebanon to the Mediterranean Sea, and I will float them as rafts by sea to the place you specify. There I will separate them and you can take them away. And you are to grant my wish by providing food for my royal household.”

10 In this way Hiram kept Solomon supplied with all the cedar and juniper logs he wanted, 11 and Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand cors[b] of wheat as food for his household, in addition to twenty thousand baths[c][d] of pressed olive oil. Solomon continued to do this for Hiram year after year. 12 The Lord gave Solomon wisdom, just as he had promised him. There were peaceful relations between Hiram and Solomon, and the two of them made a treaty.

13 King Solomon conscripted laborers from all Israel—thirty thousand men. 14 He sent them off to Lebanon in shifts of ten thousand a month, so that they spent one month in Lebanon and two months at home. Adoniram was in charge of the forced labor. 15 Solomon had seventy thousand carriers and eighty thousand stonecutters in the hills, 16 as well as thirty-three hundred[e] foremen who supervised the project and directed the workers. 17 At the king’s command they removed from the quarry large blocks of high-grade stone to provide a foundation of dressed stone for the temple. 18 The craftsmen of Solomon and Hiram and workers from Byblos cut and prepared the timber and stone for the building of the temple.

Footnotes:

  1. 1 Kings 5:1 In Hebrew texts 5:1-18 is numbered 5:15-32.
  2. 1 Kings 5:11 That is, probably about 3,600 tons or about 3,250 metric tons
  3. 1 Kings 5:11 Septuagint (see also 2 Chron. 2:10); Hebrew twenty cors
  4. 1 Kings 5:11 That is, about 120,000 gallons or about 440,000 liters
  5. 1 Kings 5:16 Hebrew; some Septuagint manuscripts (see also 2 Chron. 2:2,18) thirty-six hundred
New International Version (NIV)

Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.

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