Useful Bible Studies > 1 Kings Commentary > chapter 7

A description of the columns and their names: Jakin and Boaz

1 Kings 7:17-22

Hiram was a great artist. With his great skill, he was not content to make objects that were merely impressive. He wanted everything that he made to be beautiful. He cared about details - and especially, about the details that other people might not even notice.

It is the detail of Hiram’s design for the columns that astonishes us. The tops of the columns were in the shape of flowers. Below that, chains wound round each other to make beautiful patterns. There were two rows in the shape of the fruit called pomegranates which hung round each column. Each of those rows had 100 models of pomegranates in it. All of this fine detail, like the columns themselves, was in the metal called bronze.

The most beautiful column has no meaning unless people can understand its purpose (compare 1 Corinthians 14:8). To make the meaning clear, Hiram gave names to the columns. One column was called Jakin; that means: he (God) establishes. The other was called Boaz; that means: in him (God) is strength. In other words, Israel’s relationship with God depended completely upon God.

So did this great building, the temple, God’s house in Jerusalem. Only God could establish his relationship with Israel to last always, as he promised to do (Jeremiah 31:35-37). Only God could make that relationship strong.

It was only God, and not people, who could establish his house upon earth. So, God’s people must depend on him, and not on themselves, to make his relationship with Israel strong.

Next part: The pool for the priests, called 'the Sea' (1 Kings 7:23-26)


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