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1 Kings 6:1--7:51

Context
The Building of the Temple

6:1 In the four hundred and eightieth year after the Israelites left Egypt, in the fourth year of Solomon’s reign over Israel, during the month Ziv 1  (the second month), he began building the Lord’s temple. 6:2 The temple King Solomon built for the Lord was 90 feet 2  long, 30 feet 3  wide, and 45 feet 4  high. 6:3 The porch in front of the main hall of the temple was 30 feet 5  long, corresponding to the width of the temple. It was 15 feet 6  wide, extending out from the front of the temple. 6:4 He made framed windows for the temple. 6:5 He built an extension all around the walls of the temple’s main hall and holy place and constructed side rooms in it. 7  6:6 The bottom floor of the extension was seven and a half feet 8  wide, the middle floor nine feet 9  wide, and the third floor ten and a half 10  feet wide. He made ledges 11  on the temple’s outer walls so the beams would not have to be inserted into the walls. 12  6:7 As the temple was being built, only stones shaped at the quarry 13  were used; the sound of hammers, pickaxes, or any other iron tool was not heard at the temple while it was being built. 6:8 The entrance to the bottom 14  level of side rooms was on the south side of the temple; stairs went up 15  to the middle floor and then on up to the third 16  floor. 6:9 He finished building the temple 17  and covered it 18  with rafters 19  and boards made of cedar. 20  6:10 He built an extension all around the temple; it was seven and a half feet high 21  and it was attached to the temple by cedar beams.

6:11 22 The Lord said 23  to Solomon: 6:12 “As for this temple you are building, if you follow 24  my rules, observe 25  my regulations, and obey all my commandments, 26  I will fulfill through you the promise I made to your father David. 27  6:13 I will live among the Israelites and will not abandon my people Israel.”

6:14 So Solomon finished building the temple. 28  6:15 He constructed the walls inside the temple with cedar planks; he paneled the inside with wood from the floor of the temple to the rafters 29  of the ceiling. He covered the temple floor with boards made from the wood of evergreens. 6:16 He built a wall 30 feet in from the rear of the temple as a partition for an inner sanctuary that would be the most holy place. 30  He paneled the wall with cedar planks from the floor to the rafters. 31  6:17 The main hall in front of the inner sanctuary was 60 feet long. 32  6:18 The inside of the temple was all cedar and was adorned with carvings of round ornaments and of flowers in bloom. Everything was cedar; no stones were visible. 33 

6:19 He prepared the inner sanctuary inside the temple so that the ark of the covenant of the Lord could be placed there. 6:20 The inner sanctuary was 30 feet 34  long, 30 feet wide, and 30 feet high. He plated it with gold, 35  as well as the cedar altar. 36  6:21 Solomon plated the inside of the temple with gold. 37  He hung golden chains in front of the inner sanctuary and plated the inner sanctuary 38  with gold. 6:22 He plated the entire inside of the temple with gold, as well as the altar inside the inner sanctuary. 39 

6:23 In the inner sanctuary he made two cherubs of olive wood; each stood 15 feet 40  high. 6:24 Each of the first cherub’s wings was seven and a half feet long; its entire wingspan was 15 feet. 41  6:25 The second cherub also had a wingspan of 15 feet; it was identical to the first in measurements and shape. 42  6:26 Each cherub stood 15 feet high. 43  6:27 He put the cherubs in the inner sanctuary of the temple. 44  Their wings were spread out. One of the first cherub’s wings touched one wall and one of the other cherub’s wings touched the opposite wall. The first cherub’s other wing touched the second cherub’s other wing in the middle of the room. 45  6:28 He plated the cherubs with gold.

6:29 On all the walls around the temple, inside and out, 46  he carved 47  cherubs, palm trees, and flowers in bloom. 6:30 He plated the floor of the temple with gold, inside and out. 48  6:31 He made doors of olive wood at the entrance to the inner sanctuary; the pillar on each doorpost was five-sided. 49  6:32 On the two doors made of olive wood he carved 50  cherubs, palm trees, and flowers in bloom, and he plated them with gold. 51  He plated the cherubs and the palm trees with hammered gold. 52  6:33 In the same way he made doorposts of olive wood for the entrance to the main hall, only with four-sided pillars. 53  6:34 He also made 54  two doors out of wood from evergreens; each door had two folding leaves. 55  6:35 He carved cherubs, palm trees, and flowers in bloom and plated them with gold, leveled out over the carvings. 6:36 He built the inner courtyard with three rows of chiseled stones and a row of cedar beams.

6:37 In the month Ziv 56  of the fourth year of Solomon’s reign 57  the foundation was laid for the Lord’s temple. 6:38 In the eleventh year, in the month Bul 58  (the eighth month) the temple was completed in accordance with all its specifications and blueprints. It took seven years to build. 59 

The Building of the Royal Palace

7:1 Solomon took thirteen years to build his palace. 60  7:2 He named 61  it “The Palace of the Lebanon Forest”; 62  it was 150 feet 63  long, 75 feet 64  wide, and 45 feet 65  high. It had four rows of cedar pillars and cedar beams above the pillars. 7:3 The roof above the beams supported by the pillars was also made of cedar; there were forty-five beams, fifteen per row. 7:4 There were three rows of windows arranged in sets of three. 66  7:5 All of the entrances 67  were rectangular in shape 68  and they were arranged in sets of three. 69  7:6 He made a colonnade 70  75 feet 71  long and 45 feet 72  wide. There was a porch in front of this and pillars and a roof in front of the porch. 73  7:7 He also made a throne room, called “The Hall of Judgment,” where he made judicial decisions. 74  It was paneled with cedar from the floor to the rafters. 75  7:8 The palace where he lived was constructed in a similar way. 76  He also constructed a palace like this hall for Pharaoh’s daughter, whom he had married. 77  7:9 All of these were built with the best 78  stones, chiseled to the right size 79  and cut with a saw on all sides, 80  from the foundation to the edge of the roof 81  and from the outside to the great courtyard. 7:10 The foundation was made of large valuable stones, measuring either 15 feet or 12 feet. 82  7:11 Above the foundation 83  the best 84  stones, chiseled to the right size, 85  were used along with cedar. 7:12 Around the great courtyard were three rows of chiseled stones and one row of cedar beams, like the inner courtyard of the Lord’s temple and the hall of the palace. 86 

Solomon Commissions Hiram to Supply the Temple

7:13 King Solomon sent for Hiram 87  of Tyre. 88  7:14 He was the son of a widow from the tribe of Naphtali, 89  and his father was a craftsman in bronze from Tyre. He had the skill and knowledge 90  to make all kinds of works of bronze. He reported to King Solomon and did all the work he was assigned.

7:15 He fashioned two bronze pillars; each pillar was 27 feet 91  high and 18 feet 92  in circumference. 7:16 He made two bronze tops for the pillars; each was seven-and-a-half feet high. 93  7:17 The latticework on the tops of the pillars was adorned with ornamental wreaths and chains; the top of each pillar had seven groupings of ornaments. 94  7:18 When he made the pillars, there were two rows of pomegranate-shaped ornaments around the latticework covering the top of each pillar. 95  7:19 The tops of the two pillars in the porch were shaped like lilies and were six feet high. 96  7:20 On the top of each pillar, right above the bulge beside the latticework, there were two hundred pomegranate-shaped ornaments arranged in rows all the way around. 97  7:21 He set up the pillars on the porch in front of the main hall. He erected one pillar on the right 98  side and called it Jakin; 99  he erected the other pillar on the left 100  side and called it Boaz. 101  7:22 The tops of the pillars were shaped like lilies. So the construction of the pillars was completed.

7:23 He also made the large bronze basin called “The Sea.” 102  It measured 15 feet 103  from rim to rim, was circular in shape, and stood seven-and-a-half feet 104  high. Its circumference was 45 feet. 105  7:24 Under the rim all the way around it 106  were round ornaments 107  arranged in settings 15 feet long. 108  The ornaments were in two rows and had been cast with “The Sea.” 109  7:25 “The Sea” stood on top of twelve bulls. Three faced northward, three westward, three southward, and three eastward. “The Sea” was placed on top of them, and they all faced outward. 110  7:26 It was four fingers thick and its rim was like that of a cup shaped like a lily blossom. It could hold about 12,000 gallons. 111 

7:27 He also made ten bronze movable stands. Each stand was six feet 112  long, six feet 113  wide, and four-and-a-half feet 114  high. 7:28 The stands were constructed with frames between the joints. 7:29 On these frames and joints were ornamental lions, bulls, and cherubs. Under the lions and bulls were decorative wreaths. 115  7:30 Each stand had four bronze wheels with bronze axles and four supports. Under the basin the supports were fashioned on each side with wreaths. 116  7:31 Inside the stand was a round opening that was a foot-and-a-half deep; it had a support that was two and one-quarter feet long. 117  On the edge of the opening were carvings in square frames. 118  7:32 The four wheels were under the frames and the crossbars of the axles were connected to the stand. Each wheel was two and one-quarter feet 119  high. 7:33 The wheels were constructed like chariot wheels; their crossbars, rims, spokes, and hubs were made of cast metal. 7:34 Each stand had four supports, one per side projecting out from the stand. 120  7:35 On top of each stand was a round opening three-quarters of a foot deep; 121  there were also supports and frames on top of the stands. 7:36 He engraved ornamental cherubs, lions, and palm trees on the plates of the supports and frames wherever there was room, 122  with wreaths 123  all around. 7:37 He made the ten stands in this way. All of them were cast in one mold and were identical in measurements and shape.

7:38 He also made ten bronze basins, each of which could hold about 240 gallons. 124  Each basin was six feet in diameter; 125  there was one basin for each stand. 7:39 He put five basins on the south side of the temple and five on the north side. He put “The Sea” on the south side, in the southeast corner.

7:40 Hiram also made basins, shovels, and bowls. He 126  finished all the work on the Lord’s temple he had been assigned by King Solomon. 127  7:41 He made 128  the two pillars, the two bowl-shaped tops of the pillars, the latticework for the bowl-shaped tops of the two pillars, 7:42 the four hundred pomegranate-shaped ornaments for the latticework of the two pillars (each latticework had two rows of these ornaments at the bowl-shaped top of the pillar), 7:43 the ten movable stands with their ten basins, 7:44 the big bronze basin called “The Sea” with its twelve bulls underneath, 129  7:45 and the pots, shovels, and bowls. All these items King Solomon assigned Hiram to make for the Lord’s temple 130  were made from polished bronze. 7:46 The king had them cast in earth foundries 131  in the region of the Jordan between Succoth and Zarethan. 7:47 Solomon left all these items unweighed; there were so many of them they did not weigh the bronze. 132 

7:48 Solomon also made all these items for the Lord’s temple: the gold altar, the gold table on which was kept the Bread of the Presence, 133  7:49 the pure gold lampstands at the entrance to the inner sanctuary (five on the right and five on the left), the gold flower-shaped ornaments, lamps, and tongs, 7:50 the pure gold bowls, trimming shears, basins, pans, and censers, and the gold door sockets for the inner sanctuary (the most holy place) and for the doors of the main hall of the temple. 7:51 When King Solomon finished constructing the Lord’s temple, he 134  put the holy items that belonged to his father David (the silver, gold, and other articles) in the treasuries of the Lord’s temple.

1 sn During the month Ziv. This would be April-May, 966 b.c. by modern reckoning.

2 tn Heb “sixty cubits.” A cubit was a unit of measure roughly equivalent to 18 inches or 45 cm. Measurements in vv. 2-10 have been converted to feet in the translation for clarity.

3 tn Heb “twenty cubits.”

4 tn Heb “thirty cubits.”

5 tn Heb “twenty cubits.”

6 tn Heb “ten cubits.”

7 tn Heb “and he built on the wall of the temple an extension all around, the walls of the temple all around, for the main hall and for the holy place, and he made side rooms all around.”

8 tn Heb “five cubits.”

9 tn Heb “six cubits.”

10 tn Heb “seven cubits.”

11 tn Or “offsets” (ASV, NAB, NASB, NRSV); NIV “offset ledges.”

12 tn Heb “so that [the beams] would not have a hold in the walls of the temple.”

13 tn Heb “finished stone of the quarry,” i.e., stones chiseled and shaped at the time they were taken out of the quarry.

14 tc The Hebrew text has “middle,” but the remainder of the verse suggests this is an error.

15 tn Heb “by stairs they went up.” The word translated “stairs” occurs only here. Other options are “trapdoors” or “ladders.”

16 tc The translation reads with a few medieval Hebrew mss, the Syriac Peshitta, and Vulgate הַשְּׁלִשִׁית (hashÿlishit, “the third”) rather than MT הַשְּׁלִשִׁים (hashÿlishim, “the thirty”).

17 tn Heb “ built the house and completed it.”

18 tn Heb “the house.”

19 tn The word occurs only here; the precise meaning is uncertain.

20 tn Heb “and rows with cedar wood.”

21 tn Heb “five cubits.” This must refer to the height of each floor or room.

22 tc The LXX lacks vv. 11-14.

23 tn Heb “the word of the Lord was.”

24 tn Heb “walk in.”

25 tn Heb “do.”

26 tn Heb “and keep all my commandments by walking in them.”

27 tn Heb “I will establish my word with you which I spoke to David your father.”

28 tn Heb “ built the house and completed it.”

29 tc The MT reads קִירוֹת (qirot, “walls”), but this should be emended to קוֹרוֹת (qorot, “rafters”). See BDB 900 s.v. קוֹרָה.

30 tn Heb “He built twenty cubits from the rear areas of the temple with cedar planks from the floor to the walls, and he built it on the inside for an inner sanctuary, for a holy place of holy places.”

31 tc The MT has קְלָעִים (qÿlaim, “curtains”), but this should be emended to קוֹרוֹת (qorot, “rafters”). See BDB 900 s.v. קוֹרָה.

32 tn Heb “and the house was forty cubits, that is, the main hall before it.”

33 tn Heb “Cedar was inside the temple, carvings of gourds (i.e., gourd-shaped ornaments) and opened flowers; the whole was cedar, no stone was seen.”

34 tn Heb “twenty cubits” (this measurement occurs three times in this verse).

35 tn Heb “with plated gold” (or perhaps, “with pure gold”).

36 tn Heb “he plated [the] altar of cedar.”

37 tn Heb “with plated gold” (or perhaps, “with pure gold”).

38 tn Heb “it.”

39 tn Heb “all the temple he plated with gold until all the temple was finished; and the whole altar which was in the inner sanctuary he plated with gold.”

40 tn Heb “ten cubits” (a cubit was a unit of measure roughly equivalent to 18 inches or 45 cm).

41 tn Heb “The first wing of the [one] cherub was five cubits, and the second wing of the cherub was five cubits, ten cubits from the tips of his wings to the tips of his wings.”

42 tn Heb “and the second cherub was ten cubits, the two cherubs had one measurement and one shape.”

43 tn Heb “the height of the first cherub was ten cubits; and so was the second cherub.”

44 tn Heb “in the midst of the inner house,” i.e., in the inner sanctuary.

45 tn Heb “and their wings were in the middle of the room, touching wing to wing.”

46 sn Inside and out probably refers to the inner and outer rooms within the building.

47 tn Heb “carved engravings of carvings.”

48 sn Inside and out probably refers to the inner and outer rooms within the building.

49 tn Heb “the pillar, doorposts, a fifth part” (the precise meaning of this description is uncertain).

50 tn Heb “carved carvings of.”

51 tn Heb “he plated [with] gold” (the precise object is not stated).

52 tn Heb “and he hammered out the gold on the cherubs and the palm trees.”

53 tn Heb “and so he did at the entrance of the main hall, doorposts of olive wood, from a fourth.”

54 tn The words “he also made” are added for stylistic reasons.

55 tc Heb “two of the leaves of the first door were folding, and two of the leaves of the second door were folding.” In the second half of the description, the MT has קְלָעִים (qÿlaim, “curtains”), but this is surely a corruption of צְלָעִים (tsÿlaim, “leaves”) which appears in the first half of the statement.

56 sn In the month Ziv. This would be April-May, 966 b.c. by modern reckoning.

57 tn The words “of Solomon’s reign” are added for clarification. See v. 1.

58 sn In the month Bul. This would be October-November 959 b.c. in modern reckoning.

59 tn Heb “he built it in seven years.”

60 tn Heb “His house Solomon built in thirteen years and he completed all his house.”

61 tn Heb “he built.”

62 sn The Palace of the Lebanon Forest. This name was appropriate because of the large amount of cedar, undoubtedly brought from Lebanon, used in its construction. The cedar pillars in the palace must have given it the appearance of a forest.

63 tn Heb “one hundred cubits.”

64 tn Heb “fifty cubits.”

65 tn Heb “thirty cubits.”

66 tn Heb “and framed [windows in] three rows, and opening to opening three times.” The precise meaning of this description is uncertain. Another option might be, “overhung [in] three rows.” This might mean they were positioned high on the walls.

67 tn Heb “all of the doors and doorposts.”

68 sn Rectangular in shape. That is, rather than arched.

69 tn Heb “and all the entrances and the doorposts [had] four frames, and in front of opening to opening three times” (the precise meaning of the description is uncertain).

70 tn Heb “a porch of pillars.”

71 tn Heb “fifty cubits.”

72 tn Heb “thirty cubits.”

73 tn Heb “and a porch was in front of them (i.e., the aforementioned pillars) and pillars and a roof in front of them (i.e., the aforementioned pillars and porch).” The precise meaning of the term translated “roof” is uncertain; it occurs only here and in Ezek 41:25-26.

74 tn Heb “and a porch for the throne, where he was making judicial decisions, the Porch of Judgment, he made.”

75 tc The Hebrew text reads, “from the floor to the floor.” The second occurrence of the term הַקַּרְקָע (haqqarqa’, “the floor”) is probably an error; one should emend to הַקּוֹרוֹת (haqqorot, “the rafters”). See 6:16.

76 tn Heb “and his house where he lived, the other court [i.e., as opposed to the great court], separated from the house belonging to the hall, was like this work [i.e., this style of architecture].”

77 tn Heb “and a house he was making for the daughter of Pharaoh, whom Solomon had taken, like this porch.”

78 tn Or “valuable” (see 5:17).

79 tn Heb “according to the measurement of chiseled [stone].”

80 tn Heb “inside and out.”

81 tn The precise meaning of the Hebrew word טְפָחוֹת (tÿfakhot) is uncertain, but it is clear that the referent stands in opposition to the foundation.

82 tn Heb “stones of ten cubits and stones of eight cubits” (it is unclear exactly what dimension is being measured). If both numbers refer to the length of the stones (cf. NCV, CEV, NLT), then perhaps stones of two different sizes were used in some alternating pattern.

83 tn Heb “on top,” or “above.”

84 tn Or “valuable” (see 5:17).

85 tn Heb “according to the measurement of chiseled [stone].”

86 tn Or “the porch of the temple.”

87 tn Heb “King Solomon sent and took Hiram from Tyre.” In 2 Chr 2:13 (MT v. 12) and 4:11, 16 his name is spelled “Huram.”

88 map For location see Map1 A2; Map2 G2; Map4 A1; JP3 F3; JP4 F3.

89 tn 2 Chr 2:14 (13 HT) says “from the daughters of Dan.”

90 tn Heb “he was filled with the skill, understanding, and knowledge.”

91 tn Heb “eighteen cubits.”

92 tn Heb “twelve cubits.”

93 tn Heb “two capitals he made to place on the tops of the pillars, cast in bronze; five cubits was the height of the first capital, and five cubits was the height of the second capital.”

94 tn Heb “there were seven for the first capital, and seven for the second capital.”

95 tn Heb “he made the pillars, and two rows surrounding one latticework to cover the capitals which were on top of the pomegranates, and so he did for the second latticework.” The translation supplies “pomegranates” after “two rows,” and understands “pillars,” rather than “pomegranates,” to be the correct reading after “on top of.” The latter change finds support from many Hebrew mss and the ancient Greek version.

96 tn Heb “the capitals which were on the top of the pillars were the work of lilies, in the porch, four cubits.” It is unclear exactly what dimension is being measured.

97 tn Heb “and the capitals on the two pillars, also above, close beside the bulge which was beside the latticework, two hundred pomegranates in rows around, on the second capital.” The precise meaning of the word translated “bulge” is uncertain.

98 tn Or “south.”

99 sn The name Jakin appears to be a verbal form and probably means, “he establishes.”

100 tn Or “north.”

101 sn The meaning of the name Boaz is uncertain. For various proposals, see BDB 126-27 s.v. בעז. One attractive option is to revocalize the name as בְּעֹז (beoz, “in strength”) and to understand it as completing the verbal form on the first pillar. Taking the words together and reading from right to left, one can translate the sentence, “he establishes [it] in strength.”

102 tn Heb “He made the sea, cast.”

sn This large basin that was mounted on twelve bronze bulls and contained water for the priests to bathe themselves (2 Chr 4:6; cf. Exod 30:17-21).

103 tn Heb “ten cubits.”

104 tn Heb “five cubits.”

105 tn Heb “and a measuring line went around it thirty cubits all around.”

106 tn Heb “The Sea.” The proper noun has been replaced by the pronoun (“it”) in the translation for stylistic reasons.

107 tn Or “gourd-shaped ornaments.”

108 tn Heb “ten cubits surrounding the sea all around.” The precise meaning of this description is uncertain.

109 tn Heb “the gourd-shaped ornaments were in two rows, cast in its casting.”

110 tn Heb “all their hindquarters were toward the inside.”

111 tn Heb “two thousand baths” (a bath was a liquid measure roughly equivalent to six gallons).

112 tn Heb “four cubits.”

113 tn Heb “four cubits.”

114 tn Heb “three cubits.”

115 tn The precise meaning of these final words is uncertain. A possible literal translation would be, “wreaths, the work of descent.”

116 tn The precise meaning of this last word, translated “wreaths,” is uncertain.

117 tn Heb “And its opening from the inside to the top and upwards [was] a cubit, and its opening was round, the work of a stand, a cubit-and-a-half.” The precise meaning of this description is uncertain.

118 tn Heb “also over its opening were carvings and their frames [were] squared, not round.”

119 tn Heb “a cubit-and-a-half” (a cubit was a unit of measure roughly equivalent to 18 inches or 45 cm).

120 tn Heb “four shoulders to the four sides of each stand, from the stand its shoulders.” The precise meaning of the description is uncertain.

121 tn Heb “and on top of the stand, a half cubit [in] height, round all around” (the meaning of this description is uncertain).

122 tn Heb “according to the space of each.”

123 tn The precise meaning of this last word, translated “wreaths,” is uncertain.

124 tn Heb “forty baths” (a bath was a liquid measure roughly equivalent to six gallons).

125 tn Heb “four cubits, each basin.” It is unclear which dimension is being measured.

126 tn Heb “Hiram.” The proper name has been replaced by the pronoun (“he”) in the translation for stylistic reasons.

127 tn Heb “Hiram finished doing all the work which he did for King Solomon [on] the house of the Lord.

128 tn The words “he made” are added for stylistic reasons.

129 tn Heb “underneath ‘The Sea.’”

130 tn Heb “which Hiram made for King Solomon [for] the house of the Lord.

131 tn Or perhaps, “molds.”

132 tn Heb “Solomon left all the items, due to their very great abundance; the weight of the bronze was not sought.”

133 tn Heb “the bread of the face [or presence].” Many recent English versions employ “the bread of the Presence,” although this does not convey much to the modern reader.

sn This bread was viewed as a perpetual offering to God and was regarded as holy. See Lev 24:5-9.

134 tn Heb “Solomon.” The proper name has been replaced by the pronoun (“he”) in the translation for stylistic reasons.



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