Hiram’s Building Materials

King Hiram of Tyre(A) sent his emissaries to Solomon when he heard that he had been anointed king in his father’s place,(B) for Hiram had always been friends with David.(C)

Solomon sent this message to Hiram: “You know my father David was not able to build a temple for the name of the Lord his God. This was because of the warfare all around him until the Lord put his enemies under his feet.(D) The Lord my God has now given me rest on every side; there is no enemy or misfortune.(E) So I plan to build a temple for the name of the Lord my God,(F) according to what the Lord promised my father David: ‘I will put your son on your throne in your place, and he will build the temple for my name.’(G)

“Therefore, command that cedars from Lebanon be cut down for me. My servants will be with your servants, and I will pay your servants’ wages according to whatever you say, for you know that not a man among us knows how to cut timber like the Sidonians.”(H)

When Hiram heard Solomon’s words, he rejoiced greatly and said, “Blessed be the Lord today!(I) He has given David a wise son to be over this great people!” Then Hiram sent a reply to Solomon, saying, “I have heard your message; I will do everything you want regarding the cedar and cypress timber. My servants will bring the logs down from Lebanon to the sea, and I will make them into rafts to go by sea to the place you indicate. I will break them apart there, and you can take them away. You then can meet my needs by providing my household with food.”(J)

10 So Hiram provided Solomon with all the cedar and cypress timber he wanted, 11 and Solomon provided Hiram with one hundred twenty thousand bushels[a] of wheat as food for his household and one hundred twenty thousand gallons[b] of oil from crushed olives.(K) Solomon did this for Hiram year after year.

12 The Lord gave Solomon wisdom, as he had promised him.(L) There was peace between Hiram and Solomon, and the two of them made a treaty.(M)

Solomon’s Workforce

13 Then King Solomon drafted forced laborers from all Israel;(N) the labor force numbered thirty thousand men. 14 He sent ten thousand to Lebanon each month in shifts; one month they were in Lebanon, two months they were at home. Adoniram was in charge of the forced labor. 15 Solomon had seventy thousand porters and eighty thousand stonecutters in the mountains,(O) 16 not including his thirty-three hundred[c] deputies(P) in charge of the work. They supervised the people doing the work. 17 The king commanded them to quarry large, costly stones to lay the foundation of the temple with dressed stones.(Q) 18 So Solomon’s builders and Hiram’s builders,(R) along with the Gebalites,(S) quarried the stone and prepared the timber and stone for the temple’s construction.

Building the Temple

Solomon began to build the temple for the Lord in the four hundred eightieth year(T) after the Israelites came out of the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of his reign over Israel, in the month of Ziv, which is the second month.[d](U) The temple that King Solomon built for the Lord(V) was ninety feet[e] long, thirty feet[f] wide, and forty-five feet[g] high.(W) The portico in front of the temple sanctuary was thirty feet long extending across the temple’s width, and fifteen feet deep[h] in front of the temple.(X) He also made windows with beveled frames[i] for the temple.(Y)

He then built a chambered structure[j] along the temple wall, encircling the walls of the temple, that is, the sanctuary and the inner sanctuary.(Z) And he made side chambers[k] all around.(AA) The lowest chamber was 7½ feet[l] wide, the middle was 9 feet[m] wide, and the third was 10½ feet[n] wide. He also provided offset ledges for the temple all around the outside so that nothing would be inserted into the temple walls. The temple’s construction used finished stones cut at the quarry so that no hammer, chisel, or any iron tool was heard in the temple while it was being built.(AB)

The door for the lowest[o] side chamber was on the right side of the temple. They[p] went up a stairway[q] to the middle chamber, and from the middle to the third. When he finished building the temple,(AC) he paneled it with boards and planks of cedar. 10 He built the chambers along the entire temple, joined to the temple with cedar beams;(AD) each story was 7½ feet high.

11 The word of the Lord came to Solomon:(AE) 12 “As for this temple you are building—if you walk in my statutes, observe my ordinances, and keep all my commands by walking in them,(AF) I will fulfill my promise to you, which I made to your father David.(AG) 13 I will dwell among the Israelites and not abandon my people Israel.”(AH)

14 When Solomon finished building the temple,[r](AI) 15 he paneled the interior temple walls with cedar boards; from the temple floor to the surface of the ceiling he overlaid the interior with wood. He also overlaid the floor with cypress boards.(AJ) 16 Then he lined thirty feet of the rear of the temple with cedar boards from the floor to the surface of the ceiling,[s] and he built the interior as an inner sanctuary, the most holy place.(AK) 17 The temple, that is, the sanctuary in front of the most holy place,[t] was sixty feet[u] long. 18 The cedar paneling inside the temple was carved with ornamental gourds(AL) and flower blossoms. Everything was cedar;(AM) not a stone could be seen.

19 He prepared the inner sanctuary(AN) inside the temple to put the ark of the Lord’s covenant(AO) there. 20 The interior of the sanctuary was thirty feet long, thirty feet wide, and thirty feet high; he overlaid it with pure gold.(AP) He also overlaid the cedar altar. 21 Next, Solomon overlaid the interior of the temple with pure gold, and he hung[v] gold chains(AQ) across the front of the inner sanctuary(AR) and overlaid it with gold. 22 So he added the gold overlay to the entire temple until everything was completely finished, including the entire altar(AS) that belongs to the inner sanctuary.

23 In the inner sanctuary he made two cherubim(AT) 15 feet[w] high out of olive wood. 24 One wing of the first cherub was 7½ feet long, and the other wing was 7½ feet long. The wingspan was 15 feet from tip to tip. 25 The second cherub also was 15 feet; both cherubim had the same size and shape. 26 The first cherub’s height was 15 feet and so was the second cherub’s. 27 Then he put the cherubim inside the inner temple. Since their wings were spread out, the first one’s wing touched one wall while the second cherub’s wing touched the other[x] wall, and in the middle of the temple their wings were touching wing to wing.(AU) 28 He also overlaid the cherubim with gold.

29 He carved all the surrounding temple walls with carved engravings—cherubim,(AV) palm trees, and flower blossoms—in the inner and outer sanctuaries. 30 He overlaid the temple floor with gold in both the inner and the outer sanctuaries.

31 For the entrance of the inner sanctuary, he made olive wood doors.(AW) The pillars of the doorposts were five-sided.[y] 32 The two doors were made of olive wood. He carved cherubim, palm trees, and flower blossoms on them and overlaid them with gold, hammering gold over the cherubim and palm trees. 33 In the same way, he made four-sided[z] olive wood doorposts for the sanctuary entrance. 34 The two doors(AX) were made of cypress wood; the first door had two folding sides, and the second door had two folding panels. 35 He carved cherubim, palm trees, and flower blossoms on them and overlaid them with gold applied evenly over the carving. 36 He built the inner courtyard(AY) with three rows of dressed stone(AZ) and a row of trimmed cedar beams.

37 The foundation of the Lord’s temple was laid in Solomon’s fourth year in the month of Ziv. 38 In his eleventh year in the month of Bul, which is the eighth month,[aa] the temple was completed in every detail and according to every specification.(BA) So he built it in seven years.(BB)

Footnotes

  1. 5:11 Lit 20,000 cors
  2. 5:11 LXX reads 20,000 baths; MT reads 20 cors
  3. 5:16 Some LXX mss read 3,600; 2Ch 2:2,18
  4. 6:1 April–May
  5. 6:2 Lit 60 cubits
  6. 6:2 Lit 20 cubits, also in vv. 3,16,20
  7. 6:2 Lit 30 cubits
  8. 6:3 Lit 10 cubits wide
  9. 6:4 Hb obscure
  10. 6:5 Lit built the temple of chamber
  11. 6:5 Lit made ribs or sides
  12. 6:6 Lit five cubits, also in vv. 10,24
  13. 6:6 Lit six cubits
  14. 6:6 Lit seven cubits
  15. 6:8 LXX, Tg; MT reads middle
  16. 6:8 = People
  17. 6:8 Hb obscure
  18. 6:11–14 LXX omits these vv.
  19. 6:16 LXX; MT omits of the ceiling; 1Kg 6:15
  20. 6:17 Lit front of me; Hb obscure
  21. 6:17 Lit 40 cubits
  22. 6:21 Lit he caused to pass across
  23. 6:23 Lit 10 cubits, also in vv. 24,25,26
  24. 6:27 Lit the second
  25. 6:31 Hb obscure
  26. 6:33 Hb obscure
  27. 6:38 = October–November

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