Solomon Gathers Building Materials for the Temple
1 (5:15)#sn The verse numbers in the English Bible differ from those in the Hebrew text (BHS) here; 5:1-18 in the English Bible corresponds to 5:15-32 in the Hebrew text. See the note at 4:21. King Hiram of Tyre#map For location see Map1-A2; Map2-G2; Map4-A1; JP3-F3; JP4-F3. sent messengers#tn Heb “his servants.” to Solomon when he heard that he had been anointed king in his father’s place. (Hiram had always been an ally of David.) 2 Solomon then sent this message to Hiram: 3 “You know that my father David was unable to build a temple to honor the Lord#tn Heb “a house for the name of the Lord.” The word “name” sometimes refers to one’s reputation or honor. The “name” of the Lord sometimes designates the Lord himself, being indistinguishable from the proper name. his God, for he was busy fighting battles on all fronts while the Lord subdued his enemies.#tn Heb “because of the battles which surrounded him until the Lord placed them under the soles of his feet.” 4 But now the Lord my God has made me secure on all fronts; there is no adversary or dangerous threat. 5 So I have decided#tn Heb “Look, I am saying.” to build a temple to honor the Lord#tn Heb “a house for the name of the Lord.” The word “name” sometimes refers to one’s reputation or honor. The “name” of the Lord sometimes designates the Lord himself, being indistinguishable from the proper name. my God, as the Lord instructed my father David, ‘Your son, whom I will put on your throne in your place, is the one who will build a temple to honor me.’#tn Heb “a house for my name.” The word “name” sometimes refers to one’s reputation or honor. The “name” of the Lord sometimes designates the Lord himself, being indistinguishable from the proper name. 6 So now order some cedars of Lebanon to be cut for me. My servants will work with your servants. I will pay your servants whatever you say is appropriate, for you know that we have no one among us who knows how to cut down trees like the Sidonians.”
7 When Hiram heard Solomon’s message, he was very happy. He said, “The Lord is worthy of praise today because he#tn Or “Blessed be the Lord today, who….” has given David a wise son to rule over this great nation.” 8 Hiram then sent this message to Solomon: “I received#tn Heb “heard.” the message you sent to me. I will give you all the cedars and evergreens you need.#tn Heb “I will satisfy all your desire with respect to cedar wood and with respect to the wood of evergreens.” 9 My servants will bring the timber down from Lebanon to the sea. I will send it by sea in raft-like bundles to the place you designate.#tn Heb “I will place them [on? as?] rafts in the sea to the place where you designate to me.” This may mean he would send them by raft, or that he would tie them in raft-like bundles, and have ships tow them down to an Israelite port. There I will separate the logs#tn Heb “smash them,” i.e., untie the bundles. and you can carry them away. In exchange you will supply the food I need for my royal court.”#tn Heb “as for you, you will satisfy my desire by giving food for my house.”
10 So Hiram supplied the cedars and evergreens Solomon needed,#tn Heb “and Hiram gave to Solomon cedar wood and the wood of evergreens, all his desire.” 11 and Solomon supplied Hiram annually with 20,000 cors#sn As a unit of dry measure a cor was roughly equivalent to six bushels. of wheat as provision for his royal court,#tn Heb “his house.” as well as 20,000 baths#tc The Hebrew text has “twenty cors,” but the ancient Greek version and the parallel text in 2 Chr 2:10 read “twenty thousand baths.” sn A bath was a liquid measure equivalent to almost six gallons. of pure#tn Or “pressed.” olive oil.#tn Heb “and Solomon supplied Hiram with twenty thousand cors of wheat…pure olive oil. So Solomon would give to Hiram year by year.” 12 So the Lord gave Solomon wisdom, as he had promised him. And Hiram and Solomon were at peace and made a treaty.#tn Heb “a covenant,” referring to a formal peace treaty or alliance.
13 King Solomon conscripted#tn Heb “raised up.” work crews#sn Work crews. This Hebrew word (מַס, mas) refers to a group of laborers conscripted for royal or public service. from throughout Israel, 30,000 men in all. 14 He sent them to Lebanon in shifts of 10,000 men per month. They worked in Lebanon for one month, and then spent two months at home. Adoniram was supervisor of#tn Heb “was over.” the work crews. 15 Solomon also had 70,000 common laborers#tn Heb “carriers of loads.” and 80,000 stonecutters#tn Heb “cutters” (probably of stones). in the hills, 16 besides 3,300#tc Some Greek mss of the OT read “3,600”; cf. 2 Chr 2:2, 18 and NLT. officials who supervised the workers.#tn Heb “besides thirty-three hundred from the officials of Solomon’s governors who were over the work, the ones ruling over the people, the ones doing the work.” 17 By royal order#tn Heb “and the king commanded.” they supplied large valuable stones in order to build the temple’s foundation with chiseled stone. 18 Solomon’s and Hiram’s construction workers,#tn Heb “builders.” along with men from Byblos,#tn Heb “the Gebalites.” The reading is problematic and some emend to a verb form meaning, “set the borders.” did the chiseling and prepared the wood and stones for the building of the temple.#tc The LXX includes the words “for three years.”