Useful Bible Studies > 1 Kings Commentary > chapter 7

The Palace of the Forest of Lebanon

1 Kings 7:2-5

The Palace of the Forest of Lebanon was the name of a great hall that Solomon built in Jerusalem. It was probably the largest of the many buildings that belonged to Solomon’s palace. It was 150 feet (45 metres) long, 75 feet (25 metres) wide and 45 feet (15 metres) high. That space is large enough for about 1000 people to sit inside. In the ancient world, people would have considered it an immense building.

It received its name because of the many great wooden columns that supported the roof. Each of those columns had formerly been a great tree in the famous forest in Lebanon. They stood, like a forest, in rows that reached from the floor to the ceiling.

This was truly impressive. Of course, another wonderful building, the temple, already stood in Jerusalem.

However, Solomon could not show the temple to his many guests; the temple was God’s house, and very holy. They would only see the temple from a distance, but they could enter this great palace.

We do not know how Solomon used this great building. Perhaps he brought his guests here for great meals with the king. Round them, they saw a splendid display of gold objects (10:16-17). Everything that they used there was also gold (10:21). We may think about the gold cups and plates at those meals, and the impression that these things gave to Solomon’s guests. They both saw and knew that Israel truly had a great king.

Next part: The hall with columns (1 Kings 7:6)


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