Log in

Jesus Teaching in Solomon’s Porch

2016-12-12 12:50 PM | Dave

For his judgment hall, the wise King Solomon had constructed a large chamber 50 cubits long and 30 cubits wide attached to the original temple (a cubit is the length of a forearm, 20 to 21 inches). The enormous portico in front was built of cedar “of the forest of Lebanon,” (I Kings 7) and was known as “the porch of judgment,” then in Jesus's time as “Solomon’s porch.” The historian Josephus Flavius (War of the Jews, Book 5, Chapter 5) described it as an area of the original temple that survived the attack of the Babylonians in 586 B. C., four hundred years later, who left it standing because of its immense size and beauty.

Here the doctors of the law met to hear and answer questions. Jesus also taught in the outer court where non-Jews could gather and listen to his words. The Urantia Book (The UB) tells us Jesus spoke there several times. “Although his disciples had not expected Jesus to attend the feast, the vast majority of the pilgrims from afar who had heard of him entertained the hope that they might see him at Jerusalem. And they were not disappointed, for on several occasions he taught in Solomon’s Porch and elsewhere in the temple courts. These teachings were really the official or formal announcement of the divinity of Jesus to the Jewish people and to the whole world.” (The UB, 162:1.9)

One of the speeches that Jesus made there, recorded in John, Chapter 7, is greatly expanded in The UB account. In Paper 162, we can read not one, but three sermons, or discourses that he gave during this same Feast of the Tabernacles (Sukkot). They are the “Sermon on the Light of the World” (sec. 5); the “Discourse on the Water of Life” (sec. 6); and the “Discourse on Spiritual Freedom” (sec. 7):

"If my words abide in you and you are minded to do the will of my Father, then are you truly my disciples. You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. I know how you will answer me: We are the children of Abraham, and we are in bondage to none; how then shall we be made free? Even so, I do not speak of outward subjection to another’s rule; I refer to the liberties of the soul.” (162:7.2)

"I know that you are Abraham’s seed, yet your leaders seek to kill me because my word has not been allowed to have its transforming influence in their hearts. Their souls are sealed by prejudice and blinded by the pride of revenge.” (162:7.3)

“Now … at my side [a scribe] asks … Who do you claim to be that you dare to utter such blasphemies?' And I say to all such that, if I glorify myself, my glory is as nothing. But it is the Father who shall glorify me, even the same Father whom you call God. But you have failed to know this your God and my Father, and I have come to bring you together; to show you how to become truly the sons of God. Though you know not the Father, I truly know him.” (162:7.5)

In John 10:22, the Biblical record shows that he spoke again in Solomon’s porch at the Feast of Dedication. Some of what is written of this event in the Bible actually took place at the earlier Feast of the Tabernacles according to The UB.

Whereas at the Feast of the Tabernacles, Jesus proclaimed the gospel to pilgrims from all over the Roman Empire, his purpose this time was to speak to the Sanhedrin. Two of the apostles who accompanied him on this “secret” mission, Thomas and Nathaniel, raised anxious objections to his going into Jerusalem. He replied, "I would give these teachers in Israel another opportunity to see the light, before my hour comes." (164:0.2) Though the most striking event of this occasion, the healing of Josiah the blind beggar (a story that occupies most of Paper 164), had important consequences, the truly major address he gave was at the home of Nicodemus; “Here were gathered together some twenty-five Jewish leaders who believed Jesus' teaching. (164:2.1)

“When this little meeting broke up, all went away mystified by the Master’s personality, charmed by his gracious manner, and in love with the man.” (164:2.3)

Sources used:

Recent Blog Posts

Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software