Dedication of the Temple
There are five dedications of the Temple of Jerusalem which are recorded in Jewish history: 1. The dedication of the Solomonic Temple, 1004 B.C. 2. The dedication in the time of Hezekiah, when it was purified from the abominations of Ahaz, 726 B.C. 3. The dedication of Zerubbabel's Temple, 513 B.C. 4. The dedication of the Temple when it was purified after Judas Maccabaeus had driven out the Syrians, 161 B.C. 5. The dedication of Herod's Temple. 22 B.C.
The fourth of these is still celebrated by the Jews in their Feast of the Dedication. The first only is connected with the Masonic ritual, and is commemorated in the Most Excellent Master's Degree of the American Rite as the Celebration of the Capstone. This dedication was made by King Solomon in the blear of the World 3000, and lasted eight days, commencing in the month of Tisri, 15th day, during the Feast of Tabernacles. The dedication of the Temple is called. in the English system of Lectures, the third grand offering which consecrates the floor of a Mason s Lodge. The same Lectures contain a tradition that on that occasion King Solomon assembled the nine Deputy Gland Masters in the holy place, from which all natural light had been carefully excluded, and which only received the artificial light which emanated from the east, west, and south, and there made the necessary arrangements. The legend must be considered as a myth; but the inimitable prayer and in vocation which were offered up by King Solomon on e occasion are recorded in the eighth chapter of the first Book of Kings, which contains the Scriptural fount of the dedication.
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