This is Episode #131 and today we’ll read 2 Chronicles chapters 2-5 together. In this episode, we revisit the building and dedication of the temple. Gosh, I would have loved to have seen it!
Joy: You’re listening to Season 2 of the Lifting Her Voice podcast. This is Episode #131 and today we’ll read 2 Chronicles chapters 2-5 together. In this episode, we revisit the building and dedication of the temple. Gosh, I would have loved to have seen it!
Welcome to the Lifting Her Voice podcast, Season 2! I’m your host, Joy Miller, and I invite you to grab your Bible and join me – from the beginning – simply reading God’s word together. We built some spiritual muscles in 2020 with just the New Testament. But this year we’re going all out, cover-to-cover, Old Testament and New. So, whether with your first cup in the morning, your commute to work, or as the last thing on your mind before sleep, God’s Word will equip you for every good work. I’m really glad you’re here!
2 Chronicles Chapter 2
Solomon’s Letter to Hiram
Solomon decided to build a temple for the name of the Lord and a royal palace for himself, so he assigned 70,000 men as porters, 80,000 men as stonecutters in the mountains, and 3,600 as supervisors over them.
Then Solomon sent word to King Hiram of Tyre:
Do for me what you did for my father David. You sent him cedars to build him a house to live in. Now I am building a temple for the name of the Lord my God in order to dedicate it to him for burning fragrant incense before him, for displaying the rows of the Bread of the Presence continuously, and for sacrificing burnt offerings for the morning and the evening, the Sabbaths and the New Moons, and the appointed festivals of the Lord our God. This is ordained for Israel permanently. The temple that I am building will be great, for our God is greater than any of the gods.
But who is able to build a temple for him, since even heaven and the highest heaven cannot contain him? Who am I then that I should build a temple for him except as a place to burn incense before him?
Solomon Gave for the Work
Therefore, send me an artisan who is skilled in engraving to work with gold, silver, bronze, and iron, and with purple, crimson, and blue yarn. He will work with the artisans who are with me in Judah and Jerusalem, appointed by my father David. Also, send me cedar, cypress, and algum logs from Lebanon, for I know that your servants know how to cut the trees of Lebanon. Note that my servants will be with your servants to prepare logs for me in abundance because the temple I am building will be great and wondrous. I will give your servants, the woodcutters who cut the trees, one hundred twenty thousand bushels of wheat flour, one hundred twenty thousand bushels of barley, one hundred twenty thousand gallons of wine, and one hundred twenty thousand gallons of oil.
Then King Hiram of Tyre wrote a letter and sent it to Solomon:
Because the Lord loves his people, he set you over them as king.
Hiram also said:
Blessed be the Lord God of Israel, who made the heavens and the earth! He gave King David a wise son with insight and understanding, who will build a temple for the Lord and a royal palace for himself. I have now sent Huram-abi, a skillful man who has understanding. He is the son of a woman from the daughters of Dan. His father is a man of Tyre. He knows how to work with gold, silver, bronze, iron, stone, and wood, with purple, blue, crimson yarn, and fine linen. He knows how to do all kinds of engraving and to execute any design that may be given him. I have sent him to be with your artisans and the artisans of my lord, your father David.
Now, let my lord send the wheat, barley, oil, and wine to his servants as promised. We will cut logs from Lebanon, as many as you need, and bring them to you as rafts by sea to Joppa. You can then take them up to Jerusalem.
Solomon took a census of all the resident alien men in the land of Israel, after the census that his father David had conducted, and the total was 153,600. Solomon made 70,000 of them porters, 80,000 stonecutters in the mountains, and 3,600 supervisors to make the people work.
2 Chronicles Chapter 3
Building the Temple
Then Solomon began to build the Lord’s temple in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah where the Lord had appeared to his father David, at the site David had prepared on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite.
He began to build on the second day of the second month in the fourth year of his reign. These are Solomon’s foundations for building God’s temple: the length was ninety feet, and the width thirty feet. The portico, which was across the front extending across the width of the temple, was thirty feet wide; its height was thirty feet; he overlaid its inner surface with pure gold. The larger room he paneled with cypress wood, overlaid with fine gold, and decorated with palm trees and chains. He adorned the temple with precious stones for beauty, and the gold was the gold of Parvaim. He overlaid the temple — the beams, the thresholds, its walls and doors — with gold, and he carved cherubim on the walls.
The Most Holy Place
Then he made the most holy place; its length corresponded to the width of the temple, 30 feet, and its width was 30 feet. He overlaid it with forty-five thousand pounds of fine gold. The weight of the nails was twenty ounces of gold, and he overlaid the ceiling with gold.
He made two cherubim of sculptured work, for the most holy place, and he overlaid them with gold. The overall length of the wings of the cherubim was 30 feet: the wing of one was 7½ feet, touching the wall of the room; its other wing was 7½ feet, touching the wing of the other cherub. The wing of the other cherub was 7½ feet, touching the wall of the room; its other wing was 7½ feet, reaching the wing of the other cherub. The wingspan of these cherubim was 30 feet. They stood on their feet and faced the larger room.
He made the curtain of blue, purple, and crimson yarn and fine linen, and he wove cherubim into it.
The Bronze Pillars
In front of the temple he made two pillars, each 27 feet high. The capital on top of each was 7½ feet high. He had made chainwork in the inner sanctuary and also put it on top of the pillars. He made a hundred pomegranates and fastened them into the chainwork. Then he set up the pillars in front of the sanctuary, one on the right and one on the left. He named the one on the right Jachin and the one on the left Boaz.
2 Chronicles Chapter 4
The Altar and Basins
He made a bronze altar 30 feet long, 30 feet wide, and 15 feet high.
Then he made the cast metal basin, 15 feet from brim to brim, perfectly round. It was 7½ feet high and 45 feet in circumference. The likeness of oxen was below it, completely encircling it, ten every half yard, completely surrounding the basin. The oxen were cast in two rows when the basin was cast. It stood on twelve oxen, three facing north, three facing west, three facing south, and three facing east. The basin was on top of them and all their hindquarters were toward the center. The basin was three inches thick, and its rim was fashioned like the brim of a cup or a lily blossom. It could hold eleven thousand gallons.
He made ten basins for washing and he put five on the right and five on the left. The parts of the burnt offering were rinsed in them, but the basin was used by the priests for washing.
The Lampstands, Tables, and Courts
He made the ten gold lampstands according to their specifications and put them in the sanctuary, five on the right and five on the left. He made ten tables and placed them in the sanctuary, five on the right and five on the left. He also made a hundred gold bowls.
He made the courtyard of the priests and the large court, and doors for the court. He overlaid the doors with bronze. He put the basin on the right side, toward the southeast. Then Huram made the pots, the shovels, and the bowls.
Completion of the Bronze Furnishings
So Huram finished doing the work that he was doing for King Solomon in God’s temple: two pillars; the bowls and the capitals on top of the two pillars; the two gratings for covering both bowls of the capitals that were on top of the pillars; the four hundred pomegranates for the two gratings (two rows of pomegranates for each grating covering both capitals’ bowls on top of the pillars). He also made the water carts and the basins on the water carts. The one basin and the twelve oxen underneath it, the pots, the shovels, the forks, and all their utensils — Huram-abi made them for King Solomon for the Lord’s temple. All these were made of polished bronze. The king had them cast in clay molds in the Jordan Valley between Succoth and Zeredah.
Solomon made all these utensils in such great abundance that the weight of the bronze was not determined.
Completion of the Gold Furnishings
Solomon also made all the equipment in God’s temple: the gold altar; the tables on which to put the Bread of the Presence; the lampstands and their lamps of pure gold to burn in front of the inner sanctuary according to specifications; the flowers, lamps, and gold tongs — of purest gold; the wick trimmers, sprinkling basins, ladles, and firepans — of purest gold; and the entryway to the temple, its inner doors to the most holy place, and the doors of the temple sanctuary — of gold.
2 Chronicles Chapter 5
So all the work Solomon did for the Lord’s temple was completed. Then Solomon brought the consecrated things of his father David — the silver, the gold, and all the utensils — and put them in the treasuries of God’s temple.
Preparations for the Temple Dedication
At that time Solomon assembled at Jerusalem the elders of Israel — all the tribal heads, the ancestral chiefs of the Israelites — in order to bring the ark of the covenant of the Lord up from the city of David, that is, Zion. So all the men of Israel were assembled in the king’s presence at the festival; this was in the seventh month.
All the elders of Israel came, and the Levites picked up the ark. They brought up the ark, the tent of meeting, and the holy utensils that were in the tent. The priests and the Levites brought them up. King Solomon and the entire congregation of Israel who had gathered around him were in front of the ark sacrificing sheep, goats, and cattle that could not be counted or numbered because there were so many. The priests brought the ark of the Lord’s covenant to its place, into the inner sanctuary of the temple, to the most holy place, beneath the wings of the cherubim. And the cherubim spread their wings over the place of the ark so that the cherubim formed a cover above the ark and its poles.
The poles were so long that their ends were seen from the holy place in front of the inner sanctuary, but they were not seen from outside; they are still there today.
Nothing was in the ark except the two tablets that Moses had put in it at Horeb, where the Lord had made a covenant with the Israelites when they came out of Egypt.
The Cloud Filled the Temple
Now all the priests who were present had consecrated themselves regardless of their divisions. When the priests came out of the holy place, the Levitical singers dressed in fine linen and carrying cymbals, harps, and lyres were standing east of the altar, and with them were 120 priests blowing trumpets. The Levitical singers were descendants of Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun and their sons and relatives. The trumpeters and singers joined together to praise and thank the Lord with one voice. They raised their voices, accompanied by trumpets, cymbals, and musical instruments, in praise to the Lord:
For he is good;
his faithful love endures forever.
The temple, the Lord’s temple, was filled with a cloud. And because of the cloud, the priests were not able to continue ministering, for the glory of the Lord filled God’s temple.
The temple being filled with the cloud is almost exactly what it said in Exodus 40, when God’s glory also entered the tabernacle and Moses couldn’t enter. It must have been something to see, even better than the temple itself. I wonder what we will see someday in heaven. Revelation 20:21 says there is no need for sun or moon; that the glory of the Lord will light it.
The 3D animation of Solomon’s Temple that I posted back in 1 Kings is still in the show notes of this episode. If you want to get a visual of what Solomon’s Temple may have really looked like, I invite you to watch it. It’s free. You can also find it on my website or the transcript of this podcast. Let me know what you think at Lifting Her Voice.com, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
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Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Christian Standard Bible(r), Copyright (c) 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible(r) and CSB(r) are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.
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