1 Kings 5:15
And Solomon had three score and ten thousand that bore burdens, and fourscore thousand hewers in the mountains;
Imagine how Solomon s temple was built, that went up in Jerusalem without sound of the hammer. In the umbrageous forest of old Lebanon, many and many a day-labourer worked, cleaving and sweating, cleaving and sweating in obscurity, and wondering of what consequence all his work could be. As they toiled, day after day, at the large butt of some century-crowned cedar, with the rude instruments of their time, till at last it came down with a crash; and as they lopped off the limbs, and sawed up the vast trunk into various forms, they said to themselves, "We are slaves, labouring here among the mountains unrewarded." And not far from them, in the gorge, were men that wrought in stone. In another place were workers in metal. Some did one thing, and some another; but none knew the plan of the temple, none knew what they wrought, till on a certain day, when they all trooped to Jerusalem. It was the day on which the dedication was to take place. And when they gathered there; when the hewer of wood, the carver of stone, and the worker in metal, from the various seclusions where they had wrought, each on his separate part, came together to see what had been made with all the different parts, they saw in the columns, in the cornices, in the decorations, in all the paraphernalia of the wonderful temple, the result of their toil. They stood entranced, and wondered that out of things so insignificant in the mountains, there should come such glory in Jerusalem. God has sent some to the cedar forest, some to the stone quarry, some to the dark and dank places of this world; but He is collecting materials which will glow with untold splendour in the temple that He is building for the New Jerusalem. What the issue of life is to be you cannot tell now; but you are working for God, and with God, and according to God's plans; and ere long you will be summoned to see the result of all your work. Before that time, you cannot tell what that result is to be.
(H. W. Beecher.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And Solomon had threescore and ten thousand that bare burdens, and fourscore thousand hewers in the mountains;