Solomon gave orders to build a temple1 for the Name of the LORD and a royal palace for himself.2
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He conscripted seventy thousand men as carriers and eighty thousand as stonecutters in the hills and thirty-six hundred as foremen over them.3
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Solomon sent this message to Hiram4 king of Tyre: "Send me cedar logs5 as you did for my father David when you sent him cedar to build a palace to live in.
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Now I am about to build a temple6 for the Name of the LORD my God and to dedicate it to him for burning fragrant incense7 before him, for setting out the consecrated bread8 regularly, and for making burnt offerings9 every morning and evening and on Sabbaths10 and New Moons11 and at the appointed feasts of the LORD our God. This is a lasting ordinance for Israel.
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"The temple I am going to build will be great,12 because our God is greater than all other gods.13
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But who is able to build a temple for him, since the heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain him?14 Who then am I15 to build a temple for him, except as a place to burn sacrifices before him?
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"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 craftsmen,16 whom my father David provided.
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"Send me also cedar, pine and algum logs from Lebanon, for I know that your men are skilled in cutting timber there. My men will work with yours
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to provide me with plenty of lumber, because the temple I build must be large and magnificent.
I will give your servants, the woodsmen who cut the timber, twenty thousand cors of ground wheat, twenty thousand cors of barley, twenty thousand baths of wine and twenty thousand baths of olive oil.17"
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Hiram king of Tyre replied by letter to Solomon: "Because the LORD loves18 his people, he has made you their king."
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And Hiram added: "Praise be to the LORD, the God of Israel, who made heaven and earth!19 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.
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"I am sending you Huram-Abi,20 a man of great skill,
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whose mother was from Dan21 and whose father was from Tyre. He is trained22 to work in gold and silver, bronze and iron, stone and wood, and with purple and blue23 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 craftsmen and with those of my Lord, David your father.
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"Now let my Lord send his servants the wheat and barley and the olive oil24 and wine he promised,
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and we will cut all the logs from Lebanon that you need and will float them in rafts by sea down to Joppa.25 You can then take them up to Jerusalem."
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Solomon took a census of all the aliens26 who were in Israel, after the census27 his father David had taken; and they were found to be 153,600.
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He assigned28 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.
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