Bible: What Does 2 Chronicles 1-5 Teach Us About Solomon's Wisdom and the Temple in Jerusalem?
The Wisdom of Solomon
The LORD's "Blank Check"
THE BOOK OF SECOND CHRONICLES
Now as Solomon's reign begins in earnest, Yahweh strengthens and exalts him greatly (v. 1).
Gathering all of Israel's leaders together, the new monarch travels to Gibeon where he places Bezalel's bronze altar before Moses' tabernacle of meeting and sacrifices a thousand burnt offerings on it (vv. 2-3, 5-6).
[David had brought the ark from Kiriath Jearim and placed it in a tent in Jerusalem (v. 4).
1 Kings 3:3 relates that Solomon loved God, but made sacrifices at illegal places].
The LORD quickly responds to Solomon's act of worship, rewarding him with a "blank check" (v. 7).
Already possessing a wise heart, the young king yet senses a personal inadequacy to judge the prosperous nation; therefore, he asks God for wisdom and knowledge to handle this great responsibility (vv. 8-10).
Pleased that Solomon does not request worldly fame or power from Him, Yahweh not only grants the king his desire, but rewards him with those other gifts as well (vv. 11-12; cf. 1 Kings 3:5-15).
Solomon returns to Jerusalem and proceeds to bring great wealth and power to Israel, acquiring thousands of chariots, abundant supplies of gold, silver, and cedars, and (apparently) inexpensive horses from Egypt which he then exports throughout the near East (vv. 13-17).
The Name of the Tyrian King
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2 Chronicles 2
Solomon's major building projects—the temple and his own home—require a gigantic work force (one hundred fifty thousand men-slaves plus three thousand six hundred managers).
He employs all the aliens from David's census to accomplish this task (vv. 1-2; cf. vv. 17-18).
David's old friend, Hiram king of Tyre (v. 3), provides Solomon with an expert craftsman to work with his own skilled artisans (v. 7), as well as more cedars, cypresses, and algum logs with which to build a glorious house of worship for Israel’s great God (vv. 4-6, 8-9).
In exchange, Solomon promises to reward Hiram's servants richly for their service (v. 10).
[Solomon's heart for Yahweh and his humility appear especially delightful at this time in his life].
Hiram's return letter is full of sweetness and amiability (vv. 11-16).
He not only lavishes flattery upon Solomon (v. 11), but also praises God for His wisdom in giving such a wise son to David (v. 12).
[The Queen of Sheba made the same observation].
Then Hiram announces the soon arrival in Jerusalem of Huram his master craftsman, whom he certainly shows meets all of Solomon's requirements (vv. 13-14).
In addition, as soon as Judah's king sends his promised supplies to the Tyrian woodsmen, the latter pledge not only to cut as many logs as Solomon needs, but also float them down the river to Joppa (vv. 15-16; see 1 Kings 5 for additional details).
Mount Moriah (The Temple Mount)
Beginning of Temple Construction
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2 Chronicles 3
On Mount Moriah, the site of Ornan the Jebusite's threshing floor (see 2 Samuel 24), Solomon builds the temple, beginning its construction in the second year of his reign (vv. 1-2).
The building's foundation is approximately ninety feet long and thirty feet wide (v. 3); its holy place is about thirty feet long across the house's width and one hundred eighty feet high (v. 4; cf. 1 Kings 6 for additional information).
Cypress paneling, gold overlay and precious stones adorn the house's rooms, beams, doorposts and walls (vv. 5-7).
The Holy of Holies, overlaid with fine gold, is thirty feet long and thirty feet wide; even its nails are of gold (vv. 8-9).
Two golden cherubim, their twenty-foot wings touching both each other and the walls of this room, stand facing inward (vv. 10-13).
A beautiful veil also characterizes the Most Holy Place (v. 14).
Outside, two tall pillars—Jachin and Boaz—stand before the temple, decorated with pomegranate wreaths of chainwork (vv. 15-17).
The Bronze Sea
2 Chronicles 4
Besides a bronze altar (v. 1), Huram makes a bronze Sea with its oxen statues (vv. 2-5; cf. 1 Kings 7:23-26), ten lavers, ten lampstands, and ten tables (vv. 6-8; cf. 1 Kings 7:27-39 where the carts are the same things as the tables), courts for the priests where the Sea was (vv. 9-10), and various temple furnishings (4:11- 5:1; cf. 1 Kings 7:40-51).
2 Chronicles 5
Verses two through ten appear in 1 Kings 8:1-9 almost verbatim, but the chronicler provides more information than does the writer of Kings about the service of worship which the priests and Levites perform (vv. 11-13a; cf. 1 Kings 8:10).
In fact, their unified sound of praise and thanksgiving becomes a fitting prelude for the entrance of the Shekinah glory into the temple (vv. 13b-14).
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