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And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, every man under his vine and under his fig-tree, from Dan even to Beersheba all the days of Solomon.
And Solomon reigned over all kingdoms, from the river unto the land of the Philistines, and unto the border of Egypt: they brought presents and served Solomon all the days of his life. And he had peace on all sides round about him.
ANNOTATIONS AND REFLECTIONS.
The Egyptians and Chaldeans were, in the days of Solomon renowned for wisdom, and yet he excelled them all; for the Lord enabled him, without the usual toil of study, to understand every branch of knowledge to which he applied his mind. He had likewise an extraordinary power of judging in respect to matters of prudence and policy, which he displayed in the arrangement of his domestic affairs, and the regulation of his kingdom. By having purveyors in every division of it, who provided for the king's houshold in regular rotation, industry was encouraged, and wealth diffused amongst his subjects, because all had their turn in respect to the sale of their different commodities; and every man dwelt safely, for the king invaded no one's property
The number of kings, who were tributary to Solomon, added also to the riches and grandeur of his kingdom; none of them offered to give him disturbance, but were happy in their dependence on such a monarch. His native subjects rejoiced in the ample performance of the promises made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; for they were multiplied to an astonishing degree, and put in possession of every means of happiness this world could afford: so that they had no cause to be solicitous
for any thing, but to secure the blessing of the LORD, which they had been repeatedly assured would reward their obedience; and this blessing included the promise of EVERLASTING FELICITY. Happy were the people who were in such a case ; yea, blessed were the people roho had the LORD for their God.
HIRAM KING OF TYRE SENDETH TO CONGRATULATE
SOLOMON-THEY MAKE AN ALLIANCE TOGETHER.
From 1 Kings, Chap. v. 2 Chron. Chap. ii. And Hiram king of Tyre sent his servants unto Solomon; (for he had heard that they had anointed him king in the room of his father) for Hiram was ever a lover of David.
And Solomon sent to Hiram, saying, Behold I build an house for the name of the Lord my God, to dedicate it to him.
Thou knowest how that David my father could not build an house unto the name of the LORD his God, for the wars which were about him on every side, until the LORD put them under the soles of his feet.
But now the Lord my God hath given me rest on every side, so that there is neither adversary nor evil occurrent.
And behold, I purpose to build an house unto the name of the LORD my God, as the LORD spake unto David my father, saying, Thy son, whom I will set upon thy throne in thy room, he shall build an house unto my name.
And the house which I build is great: for great is our God above all gods.
But who is able to build him a house, seeing the hea• ven and heaven of heavens cannot contain him? who am I then that I should build him an house, save only to burn sacrifice before him ? Send me now therefore a man cunning to work in gold, and in silver, and in brass, and in iron, and in purple, and in crimson, and blue, and that can skill to grave with the cunning men that are with me in Judah and in Jerusalem, whom David my father did provide.
Send me also cedar trees, fir-trees, and algum-trees, out of Lebanon ; for I know that thy servants can skill to cut timber in Lebanon: and behold my servants shall be with thy servants, even to prepare me timber in abundance: for the house which I am about to build, shall be wonderfully great.
And behold, I will give to thy servants, the hewers that timber, twenty thousand measures of beaten wheat, and twenty thousand measures of barley, and twenty thousand baths of wine, and twenty thousand baths of oil.
As thou didst deal with David my father, and didst send him cedars to build him an house to dwell therein, even so deal with me.
And it came to pass when Hiram heard the words of Solomon, that he rejoiced greatly, and he answered in writing, saying, Because the Lond hath loved his people, he hath made thee king over them.
Blessed be the LORD God of Israel that made heaven and' earth, who hath given to David the king a wise son, endued with prudence and understanding, that he might build an house for the Lord, and an house for his kingdom.
I have considered the things that thou sentest to me for: and I will do all thy desire concerning timber of cedar, and concerning timber of fir.
And now I have sent a cunning man, endued with understanding, of Huram my father's; the son of a
woman of the daughters of Dan, and his father was a man of Tyre; skilful to work in gold, and in silver, in brass, in iron, in stove, and in timber, in purple, in blue, and in fine linen, and in crimson ; also to grave any manner of graving, and to find out every device which shall be put to him, with thy cunning men, and with the eunning men of my lord David thy father,
Now therefore the wheat, and the barley, the oil, and the wine which my lord hath spoken of, let him send unto his servants; and we will cut wood out of Lebanon, as much as thou shalt need: and we will bring it to thee in floats by sea, to Joppa; and thou shalt carry it up to Jerusalem.
So Hiram gave Solomon cedar-trees, and fir-trees, according to all his desire.
And Solomon gave Hiram twenty thousand measures of wheat for food to his household, and twenty measures of pure oil: thus gave Solomon to Hiram
year by year.
And they two made a league together. And king Solomon raised a levy out of all Israel; and the levy' was thirty thousand men.
And he sent them to Lebanon, ten thousand a month by courses: a month they were in Lebanon, and two months at home: and Adoniram was over the levy.
And Solomion numbered all the strangers that were in the land of Israel, after the numbering wherewith David his father had numbered them; and they were found an hundred and fifty thousand and three thousand and six hundred.
And he sct threescore and ten thousand of them to be bearers of burdens, and fourscore thousand to be hewers in the mountain, and three thousand and six hundred overseers to set the people to work. And all the people that were left of the Amorites,
Hittites, Perizzites, Hivites, and Jebusites, which were not of the children of Israel, their children that were left after them in the land, whom the children of Israel also were not able utterly to destroy, upon those did Solomon levy a tribute of bond service unto this day.
But of the children of Israel did Solomon make no bond-men: but they were men of war, and his servants, and his princes, and his captains, and rulers of his chariots, and his horsemen.
And the king commanded, and they brought great stones, costly stones, and hewed stones, to lay the foundation of the house.
And Solomon's builders, and Hirani's builders did hew them, and the stone-squarers: so they prepared timber and stones to build the house.
And Hiram king of Tyre furnished Solomon with gold according to his desire.
And king Solomon made a navy of ships in Eziongeber, which is beside Eloth, on the shore of the Red Sea, in the land of Edom.
And Hiram sent in the navy his servants, shipmen that had knowledge of the sea, with the servants of Solomon.
And they came to Ophir, and fetched from thence gold four hundred and twenty talents, and brought it to king Solomon.
And the navy also of Hiram that brought gold from Ophir, brought in from Ophir, great plenty of algum-trees, and precious stones.
And Solomon had linen yarn brought out of Egypt ; the king's merchants received the linen yarn at a price.
ANNOTATIONS AND REFLECTIONS.
It has been already mentioned, that Tyre and Sidon were famous trading cities: they lay near the Sea, in the