from, "The Atheist's Book of Bible Stories":
SOLOMON, AND THE ISRAELITE ABATTOIR King Solomon was a very devout man. He also liked to do things in big ways. Take, for example, the sacrifice that he offered up during a festival:
“Then the King and all the people offered sacrifice before the LORD. King Solomon offered as a sacrifice twenty-two thousand oxen and a hundred and twenty thousand sheep.” - 2 Chronicles 7:4,5
Now, let’s pause for a moment and let these numbers sink in. According to verse 9, this festival lasted seven days. That means that one animal was killed every 4.3 seconds, day and night, for a week.
Let’s look at it another way. According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, an adult sheep would weigh between 80 and 400 pounds. Let’s take an average size of 200 pounds. Oxen come it at around 900 pounds. This means that Solomon slaughtered 43.8 million pounds of animals.
This would be a pretty big pile of animal. If the animal carcasses were stacked, with no wasted space, it would make a pile of 3.9 million cubic feet, or, a pile 5 feet high, covering 18 acres.
And what did he do with this meat? Well according to verse 7, he tried to put it on the alter, along with a cereal grain offering.
“For there he offered the burnt offering and the fat of the peace offerings, because the bronze alter Solomon had made could not hold the burnt offering and the cereal offering and the fat.” - 2 Chronicles 7:7
Talk about an understatement. I could picture Solomon, looking at that mountain of meat, and saying to his attendant, “Gee, do you think that’s too much to put on the alter?”
The sheer volume of meat involved is enough to convince anyone that this passage is grossly exaggerated. I will not even attempt to calculate the economic impact of this slaughter on a relatively poor group of desert farmers.