Jerusalem: A Comparative Analysis

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Religious spaces, characterized by Thomas Tweed, are “differentiated”, “kinetic” and “interrelated”. As a sacred city with spiritual significance in three religions, Jerusalem is depicted thoroughly and illustrated in the Hebrew Bible as one of the spaces Tweed defined. The biblical portrayal of Jerusalem emphasizes that the land was chosen by God and honored by Israelites, which differentiates it as a special, singular space; the description of Solomon’s Temple shows that Jerusalem is interrelated with secular forces as its temple is endued with royal, political and economic power, and the conquest, development and falling of the city illustrates that Jerusalem is a kinetic space that changes overtime. These characteristics demonstrated in the Old Testament all contribute to the sacredness and suffering of Jerusalem, and explain its significant role in the reign of God on the earth.
In his essay “Space”, Tweed points out that a space
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The construction of the First Temple is interrelated to the economic power of the United Monarchy. Solomon conscripted seventy thousand laborers and eighty thousand stonecutters, and they “quarried out great, costly stones” to build the foundation of the temple. He traded King Hiram of Tyre twenty thousand cors of wheat and twenty cors of fine oil for cedar and cypress, and then used boards of cedar to line the walls of the temple and overlaid the whole house with gold “in order that the whole house might be perfect” (1 Kings 6:22). He also placed cherubim of olivewood covered by gold in the temple and added exquisite engraving to the walls and doors (1 Kings 5-6). All these abundant labor force and expensive materials used in the construction of the temple not only show King Solomon’s loyalty and respect to Lord, but also demonstrate the prosperity and wealth of his kingdom, thus enhanced the kingdom’s position in ancient Near

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