New Defender's Study Bible Notes
3:1 mount Moriah. This is the mountain on which God instructed Abraham to sacrifice Isaac (Genesis 22:1-10). The Muslim Dome of the Rock is now occupying that site.
3:2 the fourth year. Solomon’s first three years (possibly including two years of co-regency with David) may have been spent in acquiring materials and preparing the site.
3:3 length by cubits. The plan of the temple was about ninety feet by thirty feet, making its linear dimensions essentially twice those of the Mosaic tabernacle.
3:4 hundred and twenty. This number should perhaps be “twenty” cubits. It is likely that the “hundred” was inadvertently added in transmission. The building itself was only thirty cubits high (I Kings 6:2), so it seems impossible that Solomon would make its porch a hundred-and-twenty cubits high. It should be remembered that the doctrine of verbal inerrancy applies specifically only to the original autographs, not to copies thereof, and the original autographs have long vanished. Although the Hebrew scribes were meticulous in their attempts to make accurate copies, they could hardly avoid a few mistakes in such lengthy documents, all of which had to be transmitted by hand copying. It is significant that most mistakes in copying had to do with numbers, which were notoriously subject to misreading. It may be possible, however, that the very high “porch” was intended as a sort of steeple.
3:15 thirty and five cubits high. See note on I Kings 7:15 in connection with the apparent disagreement of the height of these pillars.
3:17 on the left Boaz. These two free-standing pillars were about thirty-five feet high. Their impressive appearance fitted their names, Jachin, meaning “Established” and Boaz, meaning “Strong.” For an apparent contradiction with respect to their height in the parallel account in I Kings 7:15-21, see footnote on I Kings 7:15.