Solomon also built a palace for himself, and it took him thirteen years to complete the construction.
One of Solomon's buildings was called the Palace of the Forest of Lebanon. It was 150 feet long, 75 feet wide, and 45 feet high. a The great cedar ceiling beams rested on four rows of cedar pillars.
It had a cedar roof supported by forty-five rafters that rested on three rows of pillars, fifteen in each row.
On each of the side walls there were three rows of windows facing each other.
All the doorways were rectangular in frame; they were in sets of three, facing each other.
He also built the Hall of Pillars, which was 75 feet long and 45 feet wide. There was a porch at its front, covered by a canopy that was supported by pillars.
There was also the Hall of the Throne, also known as the Hall of Judgment, where Solomon sat to hear legal matters. It was paneled with cedar from floor to ceiling. b8
Solomon's living quarters surrounded a courtyard behind this hall; they were built the same way. He also built similar living quarters for Pharaoh's daughter, one of his wives.
All these buildings were built entirely from huge, costly blocks of stone, cut and trimmed to exact measure on all sides.
Some of the huge foundation stones were 15 feet long, and some were 12 feet long.
The costly blocks of stone used in the walls were also cut to measure, and cedar beams were also used.
The walls of the great courtyard were built so that there was one layer of cedar beams after every three layers of hewn stone, just like the walls of the inner courtyard of the LORD's Temple with its entrance foyer.
King Solomon then asked for a man named Huram c to come from Tyre,
for he was a craftsman skilled in bronze work. He was half Israelite, since his mother was a widow from the tribe of Naphtali, and his father had been a foundry worker from Tyre. So he came to work for King Solomon.
Huram cast two bronze pillars, each 27 feet tall and 18 feet in circumference.
For the tops of the pillars he made capitals of molded bronze, each 7 1/2 feet tall.
Each capital was decorated with seven sets of latticework and interwoven chains.
He also made two rows of pomegranates that encircled the latticework to decorate the capitals over the pillars.
The capitals on the columns inside the foyer were shaped like lilies, and they were 6 feet tall.
Each capital on the two pillars had two hundred pomegranates in two rows around them, beside the rounded surface next to the latticework.
Huram set the pillars at the entrance of the Temple, one toward the south and one toward the north. He named the one on the south Jakin, and the one on the north Boaz. d22
The capitals on the pillars were shaped like lilies. And so the work on the pillars was finished.
Then Huram cast a large round tank, 15 feet across from rim to rim; it was called the Sea. It was 7 1/2 feet deep and about 45 feet in circumference.
The Sea was encircled just below its rim by two rows of decorative gourds. There were about six gourds per foot e all the way around, and they had been cast as part of the tank.
The Sea rested on a base of twelve bronze oxen, all facing outward. Three faced north, three faced west, three faced south, and three faced east.
The walls of the Sea were about three inches f thick, and its rim flared out like a cup and resembled a lily blossom. It could hold about 11,000 gallons g of water.
Huram also made ten bronze water carts, each 6 feet long, 6 feet wide, and 4 1/2 feet tall.
They were constructed with side panels braced with crossbars.
Both the panels and the crossbars were decorated with carved lions, oxen, and cherubim. Above and below the lions and oxen were wreath decorations.
Each of these carts had four bronze wheels and bronze axles. At each corner of the carts were supporting posts for the bronze basins; these supports were decorated with carvings of wreaths on each side.
The top of each cart had a circular frame for the basin. It projected 1 1/2 feet above the cart's top like a round pedestal, and its opening was 2 1/4 feet across; it was decorated on the outside with carvings of wreaths. The panels of the carts were square, not round.
Under the panels were four wheels that were connected to axles that had been cast as one unit with the cart. The wheels were 2 1/4 feet in diameter
and were similar to chariot wheels. The axles, spokes, rims, and hubs were all cast from molten bronze.
There were supports at each of the four corners of the carts, and these, too, were cast as one unit with the cart.
Around the top of each cart there was a rim 9 inches wide. h The supports and side panels were cast as one unit with the cart.
Carvings of cherubim, lions, and palm trees decorated the panels and supports wherever there was room, and there were wreaths all around.
All ten water carts were the same size and were made alike, for each was cast from the same mold.
Huram also made ten bronze basins, one for each cart. Each basin was 6 feet across and could hold 220 gallons i of water.
He arranged five water carts on the south side of the Temple and five on the north side. The Sea was placed at the southeast corner of the Temple.
He also made the necessary pots, shovels, and basins.So at last Huram completed everything King Solomon had assigned him to make for the Temple of the LORD:
two pillars, two bowl-shaped capitals on top of the pillars, two networks of chains that decorated the capitals,
four hundred pomegranates that hung from the chains on the capitals (two rows of pomegranates for each of the chain networks that were hung around the capitals on top of the pillars),
the ten water carts holding the ten basins,
the Sea and the twelve oxen under it,
the pots, the shovels, and the basins. All these utensils for the Temple of the LORD that Huram made for Solomon were made of burnished bronze.
The king had them cast in clay molds in the Jordan Valley between Succoth and Zarethan.
Solomon did not weigh all the utensils because there were so many; the weight of the bronze could not be measured.
So Solomon made all the furnishings of the Temple of the LORD: the gold altar, the gold table for the Bread of the Presence,
the gold lampstands, five on the south and five on the north, in front of the Most Holy Place, the flower decorations, lamps, and tongs, all of gold,
the cups, lamp snuffers, basins, dishes, and firepans, all of pure gold, the doors for the entrances to the Most Holy Place and the main room of the Temple, with their fronts overlaid with gold.
So King Solomon finished all his work on the Temple of the LORD. Then Solomon brought all the gifts his father, David, had dedicated -- the silver, the gold, and the other utensils -- and he stored them in the treasuries of the LORD's Temple.
Scripture quotations marked NLT are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved. (New Living Translation - The Bible Online)