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Bible Dictionaries

The American Church Dictionary and Cycopedia


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The Holy Table, of wood or stone, on which the Sacrament of the Lord's Body and Blood is offered to God as a "Sacrifice of Praise and Thanksgiving." "Altar" and "Table" are used interchangeably in Holy Scripture, and both words are used in the Prayer Book for the same thing. From the very earliest times the Altar has always been the most prominent object in the Church, being placed at the end of the chancel and elevated, being approached by three or more steps. Architecturally as well as devotionally the Altar is the distinctive feature, the objective point of the building to which all else conforms. Properly speaking, the building is erected for the Altar, and not the Altar for the building. (See LORD'S TABLE).

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Bibliography Information
Miller, William James. Entry for 'Altar'. The American Church Dictionary and Cyclopedia. 1901.

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