1 Kings 9 The Voice (VOICE)
9 After Solomon had constructed the Eternal’s temple, his own palace, and many other building projects that he desired, 2 the Eternal came to Solomon again just as He had at Gibeon.
Eternal One: 3 I have received all the prayers and requests you have prayed to Me, and I have honored what you have asked of Me. I have consecrated this temple, which you have raised, by putting My name there forever. My eyes and heart will be there continuously. 4 If you live before Me just as your father David did—with honor and righteousness, abiding by all that I have commanded you, keeping My laws and judgments— 5 I will sustain your throne over Israel forever as I promised your father David that I would when I said, “Your descendants will never fail to sit upon Israel’s throne.”[a]
6 But if you or your offspring stray from Me, break My commands and laws that I have given you, and serve and worship other gods, 7 then there will be definite consequences to your actions: I will cut Israel out of the land I gave to them, I will remove the temple I consecrated in honor of My name from My sight, and Israel will become the object of jokes for all people of the world. 8 Know that this temple which is now honored will be nothing more than a pile of rubble. All who walk by will shake their heads and ask, “What has driven the Eternal One to do this to our land and temple?” 9 The answer will come, “He did this because they turned their backs on Him—their God who led their ancestors out of Egypt—and gave their hearts to other gods, worshiping and serving them. That is why the Eternal One has done all this misery to them.”
10 Twenty years passed, and Solomon had constructed the two houses: the temple of the Eternal and the palace of the king. 11 Tyre’s king, Hiram, had given Solomon all the cedar, cypress, and gold he desired for those projects, so Solomon granted Hiram twenty cities in Galilee.
12 Hiram traveled from Tyre to view the cities Solomon was giving to him, but he was not satisfied.
Hiram: 13 What is this, my brother? Do you call these cities?
People still refer to these cities as the land of Cabul, meaning “worthless,” even today.
14 Hiram gave approximately 9,000 pounds[b] of gold to Solomon.
15 King Solomon used foreign slave laborers, taken from cities he conquered, for the construction of the Eternal’s temple, the king’s palace, the Millo, the wall of Jerusalem, Hazor, Megiddo, and Gezer. What follows is the report of it:
Solomon is easily the greatest builder of all the Israelite kings. Certainly Jerusalem is impressive, with its beautiful temple and palace and its strong fortifications. But Solomon doesn’t stop with his capital. Millennia later the remnants of his work at Hazor, Megiddo, and Gezer will remain. These cities are of strategic importance to Israel because they are on the borders of the nation near waterways or trade routes. At these sites, Solomon uses many top-of-the-line defenses, specifically the six-chambered gate in the city walls that adds greater security, but he does not neglect daily function. Within the chambers of those gates, the elders hold court and tradesmen sell their merchandise. By dedicating some of his wealth to the development of these cities, Solomon guarantees himself a secure nation because he is equipped against invasion and he is satisfying the daily needs of his people.
16 Pharaoh, Egypt’s king, had captured Gezer, set it on fire, killed the Canaanites who were dwelling there, and then given the entire city as a dowry for his daughter who married Solomon. 17 Solomon restored the border areas of Gezer, the lower part of Beth-horon, 18 Baalath and Tamar in Judah’s desert country, 19 all the cities he used for storage, as well as the cities he used for his chariots and horsemen. Solomon also built whatever he desired in Jerusalem, Lebanon, and all lands he reigned over. 20 All the Amorites, the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites who still remained in his territories even though they were not Israelites, 21 the Israelites sought to annihilate; but from those who remained, Solomon assembled his conscripted labor force. This is still done today. 22 Solomon did not turn the Israelites into slaves. The Israelites were soldiers, servants, princes, captains, charioteers, and cavalrymen. 23 All these men—550 in all—were the most important officials involved in Solomon’s work, controlling all the workers.
24 Pharaoh’s daughter traveled from the city of David to visit the house which Solomon had raised for her. Solomon then constructed the Millo.
The Millo is a massive stepped-stone structure that defends the city of David by raising it above the surrounding land and supporting the foundations of the outer buildings there.
25 Three times a year, Solomon presented burnt offerings and peace offerings upon the altar he constructed in honor of the Eternal One. He burned incense on this altar which stood before the Eternal. His work on the temple was finished.
26 King Solomon constructed a fleet of ships in Ezion-geber, which is in the land of Edom near Eloth on the Red Sea. 27 Hiram commanded some of his most experienced sailors to be the crew of the fleet. These sailors were in the company of Solomon’s servants. 28 They traveled to Ophir. When they got there, they gathered 16 tons of gold and transported it back to King Solomon.