Solomon and Hiram
1 Hiram was the king of Tyre. He had always been David’s friend. So when Hiram heard that Solomon had become the new king after David, he sent his servants to Solomon. 2 This is what Solomon said to King Hiram:
3 “You remember that my father, King David, had to fight many wars all around him. So he was never able to build a temple to honor the LORD his God. King David was waiting until the LORD allowed him to defeat all his enemies. 4 But now the LORD my God has given me peace along all the borders of my country. I have no enemies, and my people are in no danger.
“The LORD made a promise to my father David. He said, ‘I will make your son king after you, and he will build a temple to honor me.’ Now, I plan to build that temple to honor the LORD my God. 6
And so I ask you to help me. Send your men to Lebanon to cut down cedar trees for me. My servants will work with yours. I will pay you any price that you decide as your servants’ wages, but I need your help. Our carpenters*
are not as good as the carpenters of Sidon.”
7 Hiram was very happy when he heard what Solomon asked. He said, “I praise the LORD today for giving David a wise son to rule this great nation!” 8 Then Hiram sent this message to Solomon:
“I heard what you asked for. I will give you all the cedar trees and the fir trees you want. 9 My servants will bring them down from Lebanon to the sea. Then I will tie them together and float them down the shore to the place you choose. There I will separate the logs, and you can take them from there. As payment for this, you will give food to all those who live in my palace.”
10 So Hiram gave Solomon all the cedar and fir logs that he wanted.
Solomon gave Hiram about 120,000 bushels†
of wheat and about 120,000 gallons‡
of pure olive oil every year for his family.
12 The LORD made Solomon wise as he had promised. Hiram and Solomon made a treaty between themselves and were at peace with one another.
King Solomon forced 30,000 men of Israel to help in this work. 14
He chose a man named Adoniram to be in charge of them. Solomon divided the men into three groups with 10,000 men in each group. Each group worked one month in Lebanon and then went home for two months. 15
Solomon also forced 80,000 men to work in the hill country cutting stone. There were also 70,000 men to carry the stones. 16
There were 3300 men to supervise the workers. 17
King Solomon commanded them to cut large, expensive stones for the foundation of the Temple. 18
Then Solomon and Hiram’s builders and the men from Byblos§
carved the stones and prepared them and the logs for use in building the Temple.