Scriptures

2 Chronicles 4

Introduction

‘He made a bronze altar twenty cubits long, twenty cubits wide and ten cubits high. He made the Sea of cast metal, circular in shape, measuring ten cubits from rim to rim and five cubits high. It took a line of thirty cubits to measure around it. Below the rim, figures of bulls encircled it—ten to a cubit. The bulls were cast in two rows in one piece with the Sea. The Sea stood on twelve bulls, three facing north, three facing west, three facing south and three facing east. The Sea rested on top of them, and their hindquarters were toward the centre. It was a handbreadth in thickness, and its rim was like the rim of a cup, like a lily blossom. It held three thousand baths. He then made ten basins for washing and placed five on the south side and five on the north. In them the things to be used for the burnt offerings were rinsed, but the Sea was to be used by the priests for washing. He made ten gold lampstands according to the specifications for them and placed them in the temple, five on the south side and five on the north. He made ten tables and placed them in the temple, five on the south side and five on the north. He also made a hundred gold sprinkling bowls. He made the courtyard of the priests, and the large court and the doors for the court and overlaid the doors with bronze. He placed the Sea on the south side, at the southeast corner.’ 2 Chronicles 4:1-10

The Temple’s Furnishings

As Solomon continues to furnish the temple, we soon discover there are a few problems with what’s he’s doing, 1 Kings 7:15-51.

Because he built the bronze altar, 1 Kings 7:23-50 / Ezekiel 43:13-17, twenty cubits high, this meant he also needed steps for the priests to use when they were making their sacrifices. However, God specifically commanded that they shouldn’t up to his altar on steps, go to his altar on steps, Exodus 20:26.

He made the Sea of cast metal in a circular shape, which measured ten cubits from rim to rim and five cubits high, 1 Kings 7:23-29.

Notice also he had figures and images of bulls made, surely this was against God’s command, Exodus 20:4. Bulls were the usual images under which the old Canaanite fertility god Baal was worshipped. He placed the bulls under the laver, these were for the washing of the priests during and after the sacrifices.

Notice again, how he had the candlesticks made, he made them with ten branches instead of seven as God had originally commanded. Instead of putting the lampstand on the south side of the holy place, he put five on one side, and five on the other, Exodus 25:31-40 / Exodus 37:17-24.

He changed the table of showbread into ten tables and places five of them on the north side and five of them on the south side, Exodus 25:23-30 / 2 Chronicles 4:19.

There were two courts, one was exclusively used by the priests, whereas the outer court was larger and for other people than the priests, 1 Kings 6:36 / 1 Kings 7:12.

‘And Huram also made the pots and shovels and sprinkling bowls. So Huram finished the work he had undertaken for King Solomon in the temple of God: the two pillars; the two bowl-shaped capitals on top of the pillars; the two sets of network decorating the two bowl-shaped capitals on top of the pillars; the four hundred pomegranates for the two sets of network (two rows of pomegranates for each network, decorating the bowl-shaped capitals on top of the pillars); the stands with their basins; the Sea and the twelve bulls under it; the pots, shovels, meat forks and all related articles. All the objects that Huram-Abi made for King Solomon for the temple of the LORD were of polished bronze. The king had them cast in clay moulds in the plain of the Jordan between Sukkoth and Zarethan. All these things that Solomon made amounted to so much that the weight of the bronze could not be calculated. Solomon also made all the furnishings that were in God’s temple: the golden altar; the tables on which was the bread of the Presence; the lampstands of pure gold with their lamps, to burn in front of the inner sanctuary as prescribed; the gold floral work and lamps and tongs (they were solid gold); the pure gold wick trimmers, sprinkling bowls, dishes and censers; and the gold doors of the temple: the inner doors to the Most Holy Place and the doors of the main hall.’ 2 Chronicles 4:11-22

The building of Solomon’s palace and all the furnishes was really a remarkable undertaking, 2 Chronicles 4:17-22/ 2 Chronicles 5:1 / 2 Chronicles 4:6 / 2 Chronicles 4:10-5:1.

There’s no doubt that Solomon chose wisely in hiring Huram to help with the furnishings of the temple because he was a very talented skilled metal worker, 1 Kings 7:40-47.

Some translations use the word ‘bronze’, and other translations use the word ‘brass’, but this doesn’t really matter, because brass is a term that is used to describe any copper alloy. Solomon had them cast between Succoth and Zarethan, these places were queries where he had mined the huge amount of copper needed for all the furnishings.

There were also article of gold within the temple, 2 Chronicles 4:7-8 / 2 Chronicles 4:19-22, some of this gold along with some silver came from all the kingdoms which David had earlier conquered, 2 Samuel 8:9-12.

Notice that the gold lampstands Solomon had made for the temple had ten branches. We don’t know why Solomon did this because Exodus 25:31-32 tells us that God asked for the lampstands to have only three branches on each side.

When the Jews rebuilt the temple after the Babylonian captivity, they not only put the veil that Solomon didn’t make, back to where it belongs between the holy place and the most holy place, Exodus 26:31-35 / Matthew 27:51, but they also put in a seven branched lampstand.

Go To 2 Chronicles 5

DAILY BIBLE VERSE

"Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need."

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