2 CHRONICLES CHAPTER 3.
The Building of the Temple.
THE SANCTUARY PROPER. — V. 1. Then Solomon began to build the house of the Lord at Jerusalem in Mount Moriah, one summit of the range of hills which went under the general name of Zion, where the Lord appeared unto David, his father, rather, which was shown to his father David, namely, as the future site of the Temple, in the place that David had prepared in the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite, after the unfortunate census which David had arranged. V. 2. And he began to build in the second day of the second month, in the fourth year of his reign, 1 Kings 6, 1. The rock platform which had formed the threshing-floor of Ornan, or Araunah, afforded room for the Sanctuary proper, but for the other buildings and the courts special foundations had to be prepared, all this requiring an immense amount of work. V. 3. Now, these are the things wherein Solomon was instructed for the building of the house of God, these are the fundamental proportions which he employed in erecting the Temple. The length by cubits after the first measure, the cubit of the old Mosaic standard, about twenty-one inches, was threescore cubits and the breadth twenty cubits, these being the proportions of the Sanctuary proper. V. 4. And the porch that was in the front of the house, a kind of covered area-way, or portico, the length of it was according to the breadth of the house, twenty cubits, the depth being ten cubits, 1 Kings 6, 3, and the height was an hundred and twenty, the effect being that of a tower or double tower, such as were used in other temples of ancient times: and he overlaid it within with pure gold, making it the most magnificent entrance of the ancient world. V. 5. And the Greater House, the Holy Place, he ceiled with fir-tree, he veneered it with cypress, noted for its ability to withstand every kind of weather, which he overlaid with fine gold, and set thereon palm-trees and chains, garlands in the form of chased work cut in the panels of the wall. V. 6. And he garnished the house with precious stones for beauty, that is, he paved the house with beautiful and costly marble; and the gold was gold of Parvaim, especially noted for its purity. V. 7. He overlaid also the house, on the inside, the beams, the posts, and the walls thereof, and the doors thereof, with gold, either in heavy gilding or in plates, 1 Kings 6, 18. 29. 30, and graved cherubim on the walls. V. 8. And he made the Most Holy House, at the western end of the Sanctuary, the length whereof was according to the breadth of the house, twenty cubits, and the breadth thereof twenty cubits, the room thus forming a cubical space; and he overlaid it with fine gold, amounting to six hundred talents, estimated at $18,000,000. V. 9. And the weight of the nails was fifty shekels of gold, these nails being used to fasten the gold plate to the wooden lining of the walls. And he overlaid the upper chambers with gold. The building of the Temple was a work of obedience and love, just as all our work for the Lord should be.
THE CHERUBIM, THE VEIL, AND THE PILLARS. — V. 10. And in the Most Holy House he made two cherubim of image work, literally, "a work of imagery," that is, sculptured, fashioned according to a conventional design, and overlaid them with gold, 1 Kings 6, 28. V. 11. And the wings of the cherubim were twenty cubits long, that is, the four wings of the two cherubim together; one wing of the one cherub was five cubits, reaching to the wall of the house; and the other wing was likewise five cubits, reaching to the wing of the other cherub, their wings touched in the center and on either side just reached the wall. V. 12. And one wing of the other cherub was five cubits, reaching to the wall of the house; and the other wing was five cubits also, joining to the wing of the other cherub, 1 Kings 6, 27. V. 13. The wings of these cherubim spread themselves forth twenty cubits; and they stood on their feet, and their faces were inward, literally, "'toward the house," toward the Most Holy Place, for they were represented as guarding the ark. V. 14. And he made the veil, the heavy curtain hanging before the Most Holy Place, of blue, and purple, and crimson, and fine linen, of the same four fine materials of which the veil in the Tabernacle had been made, Ex. 26, 31, and wrought cherubim thereon, weaving their figures into the cloth. V. 15. Also he made before the house two pillars of thirty and five cubits high, rather, eighteen, as the original Hebrew text undoubtedly had it, or their combined height is given without their bases, and the chapiter, the capital, that was on the top of each of them was five cubits. V. 16. And he made chains, garlands, as in the oracle, in the network of ornamental castings on or below the capitals, and put them on the heads of the pillars; and made an hundred pomegranates, and put them on the chains, so that there was an apple on every link of the chainlike ornament. V. 17. And he reared up the pillars before the Temple, one on the right hand and the other on the left, as entrance obelisks of a grandeur in keeping with the rich interior of the Sanctuary; and called the name of that on the right hand Jachin and the name of that on the left Boaz. Cp. 1 Kings 7, 21. As at the time of the wilderness journey, so the Lord now had a resting-place in the midst of His people, where they might worship Him.