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wood


A highly valued resource of Palestine used for the manufacture of everything from small everyday household items to the palaces of kings and temples and altars of the Lord. It was especially important as fuel for domestic hearths and industrial installations such as kilns, metal smelters, and forges. It was also used for sacrificial fires (Gen 22:7; Num 19:6). Wood was valuable as an export commodity to countries whose timber resources were limited. Luxury woods such as ebony were imported into Palestine (Ezek 27:15). Cedar was preferred for the construction of items meant to last, such as buildings and furniture. Pine, oak, cypress, and sycamore were also popular as construction materials. Noah used gopher wood (cypress) to build the ark (Gen 6:14). Olivewood was used by Solomon for the cherubim carved on the oracle that housed the Ark of the Covenant (1Kgs 6:23), and the tabernacle was made of acacia wood (Exod 26:15).

  • Powell, Mark Allan, ed. HarperCollins Bible Dictionary. Abridged Edition. Atlanta: Society of Biblical Literature, 2009.