Bible Review 4:5, October 1988

Reconstructing the Magnificent Temple Herod Built

By Joseph Patrich

“In the fourth year of his reign over Israel, Solomon began to build the House of the Lord” (1 Kings 6:1). Bible scholars call this the First Temple. King Solomon built this Temple on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, on a stone threshing floor bought by Solomon’s father, David, for 50 shekels of silver from Araunah the Jebusite (2 Samuel 24:18–25).

The First Temple stood on the Temple Mount for more than 350 years, until its destruction by the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar, in 586 B.C. Second Kings relates that Nebuchadnezzar “carried off from Jerusalem all the treasures of the House of the Lord and the treasures of the royal palace; he stripped off all the golden decorations of the Temple of the Lord—which King Solomon of Israel had made—as the Lord had warned” (2 Kings 24:13). Nebuzaradan, the Babylonian chief of the guards, “burned the House of the Lord, the king’s palace, and all the houses of Jerusalem” (2 Kings 25:9).

The Babylonians “exiled all of Jerusalem [to Babylon]: all the commanders and all the warriors—ten thousand exiles—as well as all the craftsmen and smiths; only the poorest people in the land were left” (2 Kings 24:14).

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