The Bible – Old Testament
His own palace Solomon completed after thirteen years of construction.
He built the hall called the Forest of Lebanon one hundred cubits long, fifty wide, and thirty high; it was supported by four rows of cedar columns, with cedar capitals upon the columns.
Moreover, it had a ceiling of cedar above the beams resting on the columns; these beams numbered forty-five, fifteen to a row.
There were three window frames at either end, with windows in strict alignment.
The posts of all the doorways were rectangular, and the doorways faced each other, three at either end.
The porch of the columned hall he made fifty cubits long and thirty wide. The porch extended the width of the columned hall, and there was a canopy in front.
He also built the vestibule of the throne where he gave judgment – that is, the tribunal; it was paneled with cedar from floor to ceiling beams.
His living quarters were in another court, set in deeper than the tribunal and of the same construction. A palace like this tribunal was built for Pharaoh’s daughter, whom Solomon had married.
All these buildings were of fine stones, hewn to size and trimmed front and back with a saw, from the foundation to the bonding course.
(The foundation was made of fine, large blocks, some ten cubits and some eight cubits.
Above were fine stones hewn to size, and cedar wood.)
The great court was enclosed by three courses of hewn stones and a bonding course of cedar beams. So also were the inner court of the temple of the LORD and the temple porch.
King Solomon had Hiram brought from Tyre.
He was a bronze worker, the son of a widow from the tribe of Naphtali; his father had been from Tyre. He was endowed with skill, understanding, and knowledge of how to produce any work in bronze. He came to King Solomon and did all his metal work.
1 Two hollow bronze columns were cast, each eighteen cubits high and twelve cubits in circumference; their metal was of four fingers’ thickness.
There were also two capitals cast in bronze, to place on top of the columns, each of them five cubits high.
Two pieces of network with a chainlike mesh were made to cover the (nodes of the) capitals on top of the columns, one for each capital.
Four hundred pomegranates were also cast; two hundred of them in a double row encircled the piece of network on each of the two capitals.
The capitals on top of the columns were finished wholly in a lotus pattern
above the level of the nodes and their enveloping network.
The columns were then erected adjacent to the porch of the temple, one to the right, called Jachin, and the other to the left, called Boaz.
Thus the work on the columns was completed.
2 The sea was then cast; it was made with a circular rim, and measured ten cubits across, five in height, and thirty in circumference.
Under the brim, gourds encircled it, ten to the cubit all the way around; the gourds were in two rows and were cast in one mold with the sea.
This rested on twelve oxen, three facing north, three facing west, three facing south, and three facing east, with their haunches all toward the center, where the sea was set upon them.
It was a handbreadth thick, and its brim resembled that of a cup, being lily-shaped. Its capacity was two thousand measures.
Ten stands were also made of bronze, each four cubits long, four wide, and three high.
When these stands were constructed, panels were set within the framework.
On the panels between the frames there were lions, oxen, and cherubim; and on the frames likewise, above and below the lions and oxen, there were wreaths in relief.
Each stand had four bronze wheels and bronze axles.
This was surmounted by a crown one cubit high within which was a rounded opening to provide a receptacle a cubit and a half in depth. There was carved work at the opening, on panels that were angular, not curved.
The four wheels were below the paneling, and the axletrees of the wheels and the stand were of one piece. Each wheel was a cubit and a half high.
The wheels were constructed like chariot wheels; their axles, fellies, spokes, and hubs were all cast. The four legs of each stand had cast braces, which were under the basin; they had wreaths on each side.
These four braces, extending to the corners of each stand, were of one piece with the stand.
On top of the stand there was a raised collar half a cubit high, with supports and panels which were of one piece with the top of the stand.
On the surfaces of the supports and on the panels, wherever there was a clear space, cherubim, lions, and palm trees were carved, as well as wreaths all around.
This was how the ten stands were made, all of the same casting, the same size, the same shape.
Ten bronze basins were then made, each four cubits in diameter with a capacity of forty measures, one basin for the top of each of the ten stands.
The stands were placed, five on the south side of the temple and five on the north. The sea was placed off to the southeast from the south side of the temple.
When Hiram made the pots, shovels, and bowls, he therewith completed all his work for King Solomon in the temple of the LORD:
two columns, two nodes for the capitals on top of the columns, two pieces of network covering the nodes for the capitals on top of the columns,
four hundred pomegranates in double rows on both pieces of network that covered the two nodes of the capitals where they met the columns,
ten stands, ten basins on the stands,
one sea, twelve oxen supporting the sea,
pots, shovels, and bowls. All these articles which Hiram made for King Solomon in the temple of the LORD were of burnished bronze.
The king had them cast in the neighborhood of the Jordan, in the clayey ground between Succoth and Zarethan.
Solomon did not weigh all the articles because they were so numerous; the weight of the bronze, therefore, was not determined.
Solomon had all the articles made for the interior of the temple of the LORD: the golden altar; the golden table on which the showbread lay;
the lampstands of pure gold, five to the right and five to the left before the sanctuary, with their flowers, lamps, and tongs of gold;
basins, snuffers, bowls, cups, and fire pans of pure gold; and hinges of gold for the doors of the inner room, or holy of holies, and for the doors of the outer room, the nave.
When all the work undertaken by King Solomon in the temple of the LORD was completed, he brought in the dedicated offerings of his father David, putting the silver, gold, and other articles in the treasuries of the temple of the LORD.
1 [15-21] The two hollow bronze columns, Jachin and Boaz (⇒ 2 Chron 3:17) stood free to the right and left of the temple porch. The names are related to God’s power (Boaz) founding (Jachin) the temple and his people.
2 [23-26] The sea . . . rested on twelve oxen: this was a large circular tank containing about twelve thousand gallons of water.