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And Solomon purposed to build a house for the name of Jehovah, and a house for his kingdom.

And Solomon numbered seventy thousand men to bear burdens, and eighty thousand stone-masons in the mountain, and three thousand six hundred to superintend them.

And Solomon sent to Huram king of Tyre, saying, As thou didst deal with David my father, and didst send him cedars to build him a house to dwell therein [so do for me].

Behold, I build a house unto the name of Jehovah my God to dedicate it to him, to burn before him sweet incense, and for the continual arrangement [of the shewbread], and for the morning and evening burnt-offerings [and] on the sabbaths and on the new moons, and on the set feasts of Jehovah our God. This is [an ordinance] for ever to Israel.

And the house that I will build is great; for great is our God above all gods.

But who is able to build him a house, seeing the heavens and the heaven of heavens cannot contain him? And who am I that I should build him a house, except to burn sacrifice before him?

And now send me a man skilful to work in gold, and in silver, and in bronze, and in iron, and in purple and crimson and blue, and experienced in carving, besides the skilful men that are with me in Judah and in Jerusalem, whom David my father provided.

Send me also cedar-trees, cypress-trees, and sandal-wood trees, out of Lebanon; for I know that thy servants are experienced in cutting timber in Lebanon; and behold, my servants shall be with thy servants,

even to prepare me timber in abundance: for the house that I build shall be great and wonderful.

10 And behold, I will give to thy servants the hewers that fell timber, twenty thousand measures of beaten wheat, and twenty thousand measures of barley, and twenty thousand baths of wine, and twenty thousand baths of oil.

11 And Huram king of Tyre answered in writing, which he sent to Solomon, Because Jehovah loved his people, he made thee king over them.

12 And Huram said, Blessed be Jehovah the God of Israel, that made the heavens and the earth, who has given to David the king a wise son, endued with prudence and understanding, who will build a house for Jehovah and a house for his kingdom.

13 And now, I send a skilful man, endued with understanding, Huram Abi,

14 the son of a woman of the daughters of Dan, and whose father was a man of Tyre, experienced in working in gold, and in silver, in bronze, in iron, in stone, and in timber, in purple, in blue, and in byssus, and in crimson, and for doing any manner of engraving, and for inventing every device which shall be put to him, besides thy skilful men, and the skilful men of my lord David thy father.

15 And now the wheat and the barley, the oil and the wine, which my lord hath spoken of, let him send unto his servants.

16 And we will cut wood out of Lebanon, as much as thou shalt need; and we will bring it to thee [in] floats by sea to Joppa, and thou shalt carry it up to Jerusalem.

17 And Solomon numbered all the strangers that were in the land of Israel, after the account that David his father had taken of them, and there were found a hundred and fifty-three thousand six hundred.

18 And he set seventy thousand of them to be bearers of burdens, and eighty thousand to be stone-masons in the mountains, and three thousand six hundred overseers to set the people to work.

Preparations for Building the Temple(A)

[a]Solomon gave orders to build a temple(B) for the Name of the Lord and a royal palace for himself.(C) He conscripted 70,000 men as carriers and 80,000 as stonecutters in the hills and 3,600 as foremen over them.(D)

Solomon sent this message to Hiram[b](E) king of Tyre:

“Send me cedar logs(F) as you did for my father David when you sent him cedar to build a palace to live in. Now I am about to build a temple(G) for the Name of the Lord my God and to dedicate it to him for burning fragrant incense(H) before him, for setting out the consecrated bread(I) regularly, and for making burnt offerings(J) every morning and evening and on the Sabbaths,(K) at the New Moons(L) and at the appointed festivals of the Lord our God. This is a lasting ordinance for Israel.

“The temple I am going to build will be great,(M) because our God is greater than all other gods.(N) But who is able to build a temple for him, since the heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain him?(O) Who then am I(P) to build a temple for him, except as a place to burn sacrifices before him?

“Send me, therefore, a man skilled to work in gold and silver, bronze and iron, and in purple, crimson and blue yarn, and experienced in the art of engraving, to work in Judah and Jerusalem with my skilled workers,(Q) whom my father David provided.

“Send me also cedar, juniper and algum[c] logs from Lebanon, for I know that your servants are skilled in cutting timber there. My servants will work with yours to provide me with plenty of lumber, because the temple I build must be large and magnificent. 10 I will give your servants, the woodsmen who cut the timber, twenty thousand cors[d] of ground wheat, twenty thousand cors[e] of barley, twenty thousand baths[f] of wine and twenty thousand baths of olive oil.(R)

11 Hiram king of Tyre replied by letter to Solomon:

“Because the Lord loves(S) his people, he has made you their king.”

12 And Hiram added:

“Praise be to the Lord, the God of Israel, who made heaven and earth!(T) He has given King David a wise son, endowed with intelligence and discernment, who will build a temple for the Lord and a palace for himself.

13 “I am sending you Huram-Abi,(U) a man of great skill, 14 whose mother was from Dan(V) and whose father was from Tyre. He is trained(W) to work in gold and silver, bronze and iron, stone and wood, and with purple and blue(X) and crimson yarn and fine linen. He is experienced in all kinds of engraving and can execute any design given to him. He will work with your skilled workers and with those of my lord, David your father.

15 “Now let my lord send his servants the wheat and barley and the olive oil(Y) and wine he promised, 16 and we will cut all the logs from Lebanon that you need and will float them as rafts by sea down to Joppa.(Z) You can then take them up to Jerusalem.”

17 Solomon took a census of all the foreigners(AA) residing in Israel, after the census(AB) his father David had taken; and they were found to be 153,600. 18 He assigned(AC) 70,000 of them to be carriers and 80,000 to be stonecutters in the hills, with 3,600 foremen over them to keep the people working.

Footnotes

  1. 2 Chronicles 2:1 In Hebrew texts 2:1 is numbered 1:18, and 2:2-18 is numbered 2:1-17.
  2. 2 Chronicles 2:3 Hebrew Huram, a variant of Hiram; also in verses 11 and 12
  3. 2 Chronicles 2:8 Probably a variant of almug
  4. 2 Chronicles 2:10 That is, probably about 3,600 tons or about 3,200 metric tons of wheat
  5. 2 Chronicles 2:10 That is, probably about 3,000 tons or about 2,700 metric tons of barley
  6. 2 Chronicles 2:10 That is, about 120,000 gallons or about 440,000 liters

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