Journey Through The Scriptures


Lesson 3: Building the Temple

(Scripture to Read: 1 Kings 5:1–6:1, 11–13, 37–38; 7:13–51)

If Solomon’s wisdom was his greatest attribute, his greatest accomplishment was building the first Temple of the Lord in Jerusalem. Although King David had made plans and provisions to build the Temple, it was not until Solomon took power that it was actually built. From the descriptions we have in Scripture, it is clear that Solomon’s Temple deserved to take its place among the wonders of the ancient world. It took thousands of workers and craftsmen seven years to build this beautiful house of worship for the God of Israel — a worthy dwelling place for the true God!

To say that Solomon spared no expense in the Temple’s construction is a great understatement. The king ordered cedar to be shipped in from afar. Elaborate carvings and decorations lined the Temple’s walls. Solomon understood the magnitude of the honor he had been granted to build the Temple that his father David had wished to build. Solomon was determined to make good on his assignment and honor God by building the Temple according to exact specifications. The Temple that Solomon built became the cornerstone of Israel’s spiritual life and society for the next four centuries.

Study Questions

  1. Why was David not allowed to build the Temple?
  2. Why did Solomon include such incredible detail in the construction of the Temple?
  3. Knowing as we do that Solomon did not end his life well, why was God’s word to Solomon in 1 Kings 6:11–13 so important?
  4. Why was the Temple such a sacred place for the Israelites?

Something to Think About

God takes our worship seriously! The construction of the first Temple serves as a lesson that even the smallest details of worship matter to God, and therefore, should matter to us. The outer forms that worship takes are not designed to be a substitute for the proper heart attitude, but they provide a framework within which we can properly express our devotion to God.