Dave Burnette's Commentary

1 Kings Chapter 5

Written By: God through Inspiration
Penned By: Jeremiah
Date Penned: (586 BC)
Overview: A History of the Kings of Israel and Judah (c 1-22)
Theme: The United Kingdom (c 1-11)
Message: Preparation for the Temple (v 1-18)

1 Kings 5 Commentary 

(5:2-3) Solomon to Build the Temple - When David offered to build a temple, God said no through the prophet Nathan (2 Samuel 7:1-17). God wanted a peacemaker, not a warrior, to build his house of prayer (1 Chronicles 28:2-2).

(5:8-9 Temple Materials are Gathered - Solomon asked Hiram to send cedar and fir wood for the temple because these were precious woods considered the best for large buildings. They were coarse-grained, very hard, and rot resistant. Equally important, they were beautiful and had a fragrant scent. The logs were tied into rafts and floated down the seacoast from Tyre to a port in Israel, from which they were carried overland to Jerusalem.

(5:13-14) Solomon Organizes the Workers - Solomon drafted three times the number of workers needed for gathering and transporting timber from Lebanon for the temple project. Then he arranged their schedules so they wouldn't have to be away from home for long periods of time. This group of 30,000 workers was chosen from all the tribes of Israel. (Most other workers, including the laborers and quarry workers, were non-Israelites; 5:15-17). This showed Solomon's special concern for the welfare of his Israelite workers and the importance he placed on the welfare of their families. The strength of a nation is in direct proportion to the strength of its families. Solomon wisely recognized that family should always be a top priority. As you structure your own work or arrange the schedules of others, watch for the impact of your plans on families. Make every effort to strengthen and protect them.

(5:18) Skill Craftsmen are Assembled - The "stonesquarers" could be a reference to the people of Gebal, which was located north of what is now Beirut, near the cedar forest. These men were Phenicians, probably skilled as shipbuilders but employed for this project.


Dave Burnette's Life Application

Building the House

Each day we walk through the Bible chapter by chapter, making application of our text to help us grow in the Lord. Today we continue in the book of 1 Kings with Chapter 5.  In our text, we see Solomon begins to build the Temple. In this venture, we see Solomon and Hiram working together to build the house of God. In making an application, we know this principle of working together in the House of God is still relevant today. It takes all the members working together to build the Church of today. There are not any big I's and little U's but rather a body working together under the direction of the Holy Spirit using their Spiritual Gifts to accomplish the task of the Church. Do you see the need to work together in the Church? How about you? Let us learn from our text today and the life of Solomon as he directs the Nation of Israel to work together to build the House of God.


1 Kings 5

1 Kings 5

 1And Hiram king of Tyre sent his servants unto Solomon; for he had heard that they had anointed him king in the room of his father: for Hiram was ever a lover of David.

 2And Solomon sent to Hiram, saying,

 3Thou knowest how that David my father could not build an house unto the name of the LORD his God for the wars which were about him on every side, until the LORD put them under the soles of his feet.

 4But now the LORD my God hath given me rest on every side, so that there is neither adversary nor evil occurrent.

 5And, behold, I purpose to build an house unto the name of the LORD my God, as the LORD spake unto David my father, saying, Thy son, whom I will set upon thy throne in thy room, he shall build an house unto my name.

 6Now therefore command thou that they hew me cedar trees out of Lebanon; and my servants shall be with thy servants: and unto thee will I give hire for thy servants according to all that thou shalt appoint: for thou knowest that there is not among us any that can skill to hew timber like unto the Sidonians.

 7And it came to pass, when Hiram heard the words of Solomon, that he rejoiced greatly, and said, Blessed be the LORD this day, which hath given unto David a wise son over this great people.

 8And Hiram sent to Solomon, saying, I have considered the things which thou sentest to me for: and I will do all thy desire concerning timber of cedar, and concerning timber of fir.

 9My servants shall bring them down from Lebanon unto the sea: and I will convey them by sea in floats unto the place that thou shalt appoint me, and will cause them to be discharged there, and thou shalt receive them: and thou shalt accomplish my desire, in giving food for my household.

 10So Hiram gave Solomon cedar trees and fir trees according to all his desire.

 11And Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand measures of wheat for food to his household, and twenty measures of pure oil: thus gave Solomon to Hiram year by year.

 12And the LORD gave Solomon wisdom, as he promised him: and there was peace between Hiram and Solomon; and they two made a league together.

 13And king Solomon raised a levy out of all Israel; and the levy was thirty thousand men.

 14And he sent them to Lebanon, ten thousand a month by courses: a month they were in Lebanon, and two months at home: and Adoniram was over the levy.

 15And Solomon had threescore and ten thousand that bare burdens, and fourscore thousand hewers in the mountains;

 16Beside the chief of Solomon's officers which were over the work, three thousand and three hundred, which ruled over the people that wrought in the work.

 17And the king commanded, and they brought great stones, costly stones, and hewed stones, to lay the foundation of the house.

 18And Solomon's builders and Hiram's builders did hew them, and the stonesquarers: so they prepared timber and stones to build the house.