The Holy Bible – Knox Translation
The Third Book of Kings
Messengers, too, were sent by Hiram, king of Tyre, when he heard that Solomon had been anointed king in place of his father David, that had ever been Hiram’s friend.
And this message Solomon sent to Hiram in return;
My father David, as thou knowest, was for building a house in honour of the Lord his God; but there were threats of war all about him, and he must needs defer his purpose till the Lord should have crushed his enemies under his feet.
Now, the Lord my God has given me security on every side; neither foe nor ill chance assails me,
and I have a mind to build a temple dedicated to the Lord my God. He himself promised my father David, The son I will give thee for thy successor shall build a house in honour of my name.
If thou wilt bid thy workmen cut down cedars for me on Lebanon, and let my workmen take part with thine, thy workmen shall have whatever pay thou demandest. As thou knowest, there is no woodman’s craft among my people such as the Sidonians have.
When Solomon’s message reached Hiram, great was the joy it gave him; Blessed be the Lord God, said he, for what he has done this day, in granting David so wise a son to rule so populous a kingdom.
Then he sent Solomon his answer: I have heard thy message, and therewith granted thy request; cedar and fir thou shalt have to thy heart’s content.
My workmen shall convey them from Lebanon to the sea; on the sea I will embark them in rafts for whatever port thou shalt name; and when I have landed them there, it shall be thy part to carry them away. And meanwhile, thou shalt supply the needs of my own household.
So Hiram gave Solomon cedar and fir wood to his heart’s content,
while Solomon provided Hiram with forty thousand quarters of wheat to feed his household, and forty quarters of pure oil;✻ such was the payment he made each year.
Solomon had the gift of wisdom the Lord had promised him; he kept peace with Hiram, and a treaty was made between them.
And now Solomon picked out Israelites for his workmen, levying thirty thousand of them to that end;
and he used to send them to Lebanon for a month at a time by turns, so that each man should spend two out of every three months at home; it was Adoniram who was in charge of the levy.
Seventy thousand men king Solomon had to carry loads for him, and eighty thousand to cut wood on the mountain-side,
not counting the overseers who were in charge of the work done, three thousand three hundred overseers to give the workmen their orders.
And the king bade them bring great stones, costly stones, to be the foundations of his temple, and to hew them into shape.
This work of hewing was shared between Solomon’s masons and Hiram’s; and the men of Gibel, too, prepared wood and stone for the building of the house.
The Holy Bible