2. Solomon's Porch; which it was, and where.

Through the 'Gate of Huldah' you enter into the Court of the Gentiles, and that under the King's Gallery; which, from the name itself and gallantness of the structure, might seem worthy of such a founder as Solomon. But this is not the porch or gallery which we seek for, nor had it the name of royal from king Solomon, but from king Herod.

Josephus, in this inquiry of ours, will lead us elsewhere; who thus tells us, "At this time was the Temple finished" [i.e. under Gessius Florus, the procurator of Judea about the eleventh or twelfth year of Nero]; "the people, therefore, seeing the workmen were at leisure" [the work of the Temple being now wholly finished], "being in number more than eighteen thousand, importune the king" [Agrippa] "that he would repair the eastern porch." Here are some things not unworthy our observation; partly, that the Temple itself was not finished till this time; and then, that the eastern porch was neither then finished, nor, indeed, was there any at all; for Agrippa, considering both how great a sum of money, and how long a space of time would be requisite for so great a work, rejected their suit. Herod, as it should seem from Josephus, finished the Temple, and the Pronaon, the porch before it, and the Royal Gallery. But what he finished further, about the courts and cloister-walks, it does not appear. It is manifest, indeed, that there was a great deal left unperfected by him; when the whole was not finished till the very latter end of Nero's reign, and scarcely before that fatal war in which the Temple was burnt and buried in its own ruins: which observation will be of use when we come to John 2:20, "Forty and six years was this Temple in building."

Josephus proceeds, as to the eastern gallery: Now that was the gallery of the outward Temple, overlooking a deep valley, supported by walls of four hundred cubits, made of great square stone, very white: the length of each stone was twenty cubits, and the breadth six. "The work of king Solomon, who first founded the whole Temple." There needs no commentary upon these words; the east gallery was first Solomon's work: which plainly points which and where was Solomon's Porch; namely, upon the outer wall of the Temple, towards the east, as the Royal Gallery was upon the south wall.