1 Kings 7

Solomon builds his palace

1 Solomon was building his palace for 13 years. Then he finished it. 2 He built the House of the Forest of Lebanon. It was 46 metres long, 23 metres wide and 14 metres high. It had four lines of cedar pillars. On top of them were cedar beams. 3 They made the roof from cedar wood. The roof was over the pillars of cedar wood. Also, it was over the cedar beams that were on top of the pillars. There were 45 cedar pillars, in three lines of 15. 4 Its windows were very high. There were three groups of them. They were on the other side from other groups of windows. 5 All the doors were a rectangular shape. The wood that held the doors and the windows was rectangular too. There were three groups of windows in the front of the building. 6 He also made a hall of pillars. It was 23 metres long and 14 metres wide. The pillars were at the front of the hall, and there was a low wall in front of them. 7 And he built a room to put his throne in. He sat on it to decide who was right. And he decided who was wrong. He covered it with cedar wood from floor to ceiling. 8 And he built his house behind the room for the king's throne. This was where he lived. His house was like the room for the king's throne. He also made a house like it for Pharaoh's daughter. She was Solomon's wife.

7:1The palace had 5 parts: the House of the Forest of Lebanon (verses 2-5), the Hall of Pillars (verse 6), the room for the king's throne (verse 7), Solomon's own house (verse 8) and Solomon's wife's house (verse 8).
7:2The cedar wood came from the forests in Lebanon. This is why it is called the House of the Forest of Lebanon. It was perhaps where Solomon met important people, like the Queen of Sheba in chapter 10. Bible students think that the other 4 buildings were behind the House of the Forest of Lebanon. Solomon had a large family and many servants. So, we think that his house was very large. Perhaps Solomon's house and his wife's house joined together.
7:6The pillars were tall pieces of wood. The wood came from trees called cedars.

9 His workers made these buildings from very good, large stones. They cut the stones to the right size with a special tool. They cut the sides that were towards the inside and towards the outside of the buildings. They did this from the front to the important courtyard behind it. Also, they did it from the floor to the roof.

10 Solomon had put very good, large stones in the ground. They were 3.7 or 4.6 metres long. He built everything on these. 11 Above the ground he used very good stones. His men cut them to the right size. He also used cedar wood beams. 12 There was a wall all round the important courtyard. It was three stones high, with cedar beams on top. Solomon's men cut the stones to the right size. This wall was like the wall in the courtyard of the temple of the Lord. There were pillars at the front of it.

More news about the temple

13 King Solomon sent a message to Tyre. The message brought Hiram from Tyre. 14 Hiram was the son of a widow from the tribe of Naphtali. His father had come from the city called Tyre. His father was a very good worker with metals. His son, Hiram, was also a very good worker with metals. He knew how to make very many metal things. So he came to King Solomon. He did everything that Solomon asked him to do.

7:14The tribe of Naphtali was in the north of Israel. It was very near to Tyre.

15 He made two metal pillars. Each pillar was 8.2 metres high. A line 5.5 metres long would make a circle round each of them. The metal itself was about 7 centimetres thick. The two pillars were the same. 16 He also made two metal pieces, which were the shape of big cups. And he put one on the top of each pillar. Each piece was 2.3 metres high. 17 Each piece had a group of metal chains. He put seven of them on the top of each pillar. 18 And he made two chains of pomegranates. They went round each of the metal chains. They made the tops of the pillars very beautiful. He did the same for each pillar. 19 The shapes on the tops of the pillars were like flowers called lilies. Each one was 1.8 metres high. 20 There were 200 pomegranates all round the tops of both pillars. They were above the shapes of flowers next to the metal chains. 21 He put these pillars in the hall of pillars in the temple. The pillar at the south he called Jakin and the pillar at the north he called Boaz. 22 The tops of the pillars were in the shape of flowers called lilies. And so Solomon finished the work on the pillars.

7:15This part, to the end of the chapter, is again about the temple. They made the pillars in verses 1-12 from wood. But, for the temple, Hiram made pillars from bronze.
7:21This is what the names mean. Jakin: he will prepare. Boaz: in him you will be strong. Perhaps ‘he’ and ‘him’ in this verse mean God.

23 And Hiram made with metal what they called a Sea. It was 4.6 metres from one side to the other side. It was 2.3 metres deep. Its shape was a circle 13.7 metres round. 24 All round it, below the top, were shapes like the fruit of wild plants called gourds. There were ten for every 0.5 metre. Hiram made them in one piece with the Sea. 25 He built the Sea on 12 metal bulls. Three pointed north and three pointed west. Three pointed south and three pointed east. Their backs were towards the middle of the Sea. 26 The sides of the Sea were 7.5 centimetres thick. Its top was like the top of a cup. It was like a flower called the lily. The Sea contained 44,000 litres of water.

7:23The Sea was something special. It was full of water. The priests used this to wash themselves when they went into the temple.
7:26In the Hebrew Bible, 44,000 litres is 2,000 baths. We do not really know how big a bath was.

27 Hiram also made 10 metal carts to carry water. Each one was 1.8 metres long, 1.8 metres wide and 1.4 metres deep. 28 This is how he made the water carts. He made them with square pieces of metal, which he fastened at the corners. 29 There were pictures of animals called lions and oxen on the sides and on the corners. There were also pictures of cherubs. There were shapes like leaves above and below the lions and the oxen. The shapes were made with hammers. 30 Each cart had four metal wheels with metal axles. Each cart also had four corners and a bucket that was on four pieces of metal. There were metal shapes like leaves next to the buckets, which he made with hammers. 31 On the top of the cart there was a round hole. It was 0.5 metre deep and 1.5 metres across. Round the hole there were pictures that Hiram made with metal. The pieces of metal on the sides of the carts were square. They were not round. 32 There were four wheels under each cart. Hiram fastened the axles of the wheels to the under sides of the carts. Each wheel was 0.7 metres across. 33 The wheels were like the wheels of a chariot. He cast the metal to make the axles and all the parts of the wheels. 34 Each cart had four handles. There was one on each corner. Hiram made them as one piece with each cart. 35 There was a piece of metal round the top of each cart. It was 23 centimetres deep. Hiram fastened the handles and square pieces of metal to the tops of the carts. 36 And he cut pictures of cherubs, lions and palm trees. He cut them on the handles and the square pieces of metal on the carts. He put them everywhere! There were also metal pictures of leaves everywhere! 37 This was how Hiram made the ten carts. They all had the same size and shape. That is because they were all cast in the same mould. 38 And Hiram also made ten metal buckets. Each one contained about 1,000 litres. Each bucket was 4 metres across. There was one bucket for each of the ten carts. 39 Hiram put five of the carts on the south side of the temple. He put the other five on the north side of the temple. He put the Sea on the south side of the temple. It was at the south east corner.

7:27They used the carts to take water to the Sea (verses 23-26).
7:29Hiram made the ‘pictures’ with a hammer and pieces of metal.
7:29Cherubs were special angels, servants of God in his home, called heaven.
7:33Hiram cast the axles and wheels to make them. This means that he made the metal very hot. Then he poured it into shapes. The shapes were called moulds. These shapes were usually in sand. When the metal became cold, it became hard again. It was the same shape as the mould. This is called ‘casting’. The worker has cast the metal.
7:36Cherubs were special angels, servants of God in his home, called heaven.

40 He also made pots, small shovels and small cups.

So Hiram finished all the work in the temple of the Lord. He had promised to King Solomon that he would do these things:

7:40The lists in Verses 41-51 include things that are not in chapter 6.

41-45 two pillars

two metal pieces, the shape of big cups, on the top of each pillar

two groups of chains, which made the shapes of cups on the tops of the pillars more beautiful

400 pomegranates for the 2 groups of chains. There were two groups of pomegranates for each chain. They made the shapes of big cups on the tops of each pillar more beautiful.

7:41-45The chains were lines of metal; each piece of metal fastened to the next.

ten carts with their ten buckets

the Sea and the 12 bulls under it

the pots, small shovels and small cups.

7:45The pots, small shovels and cups were for the priests to use. A shovel is a tool that people use to dig with. They also use it to remove ashes from fires.

The metal that Hiram used for all these things was bronze. He made them for King Solomon, who wanted them for the temple of the Lord.

46 The king made them in sand moulds. He did it near the River Jordan, between Succoth and Zarethan.

47 Solomon did not weigh any of these things, because there were so many of them. They did not discover the weight of the bronze.

48-50 Solomon also made everything that was in the Lord's temple. He made these things:

The altar which he made from gold.

The table which he made from gold. On it was the special bread. That bread showed that God was there.

The things that held the lights. He made them from pure gold. There were five on one side and five on the other side of the door to the Most Holy Place.

The flowers that he made from gold.

The lights and the tools that held things for the altar.

The pure gold plates.

The tools that they used for the lights.

The cups with water in them.

The spoons and the baskets which made smoke.

Also, the places that held the doors of the Most Holy Place.

Also, the places that held the doors of the important hall of the temple.

51 Solomon brought into the temple all the things that David his father had put to one side for the temple. Solomon did this after he had finished all the things that he had made for the temple of the Lord. They were the things that they made from wood, silver and gold. He put these things in safe places in the Lord's temple.