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synagogue


  3  definitions  found 
 
  From  Webster's  Revised  Unabridged  Dictionary  (1913)  [web1913]: 
 
  Synagogue  \Syn"a*gogue\,  n.  [F.,  from  L.  synagoga  Gr  ?  a 
  bringing  together,  an  assembly,  a  synagogue,  fr  ?  to  bring 
  together;  sy`n  with  +  ?  to  lead.  See  {Syn-},  and  {Agent}.] 
  1.  A  congregation  or  assembly  of  Jews  met  for  the  purpose  of 
  worship,  or  the  performance  of  religious  rites. 
 
  2.  The  building  or  place  appropriated  to  the  religious 
  worship  of  the  Jews. 
 
  3.  The  council  of  probably,  120  members  among  the  Jews, 
  first  appointed  after  the  return  from  the  Babylonish 
  captivity;  --  called  also  the  {Great  Synagogue},  and 
  sometimes  though  erroneously,  the  {Sanhedrin}. 
 
  4.  A  congregation  in  the  early  Christian  church. 
 
  My  brethren,  .  .  .  if  there  come  into  your  synagogue 
  a  man  with  a  gold  ring.  --James  ii 
  1,2  (Rev. 
  Ver.). 
 
  5.  Any  assembly  of  men.  [Obs.  or  R.]  --Milton. 
 
  From  WordNet  r  1.6  [wn]: 
 
  synagogue 
  n  :  the  house  of  worship  for  a  Jewish  congregation 
 
  From  Easton's  1897  Bible  Dictionary  [easton]: 
 
  Synagogue 
  (Gr.  sunagoge  i.e.,  "an  assembly"),  found  only  once  in  the 
  Authorized  Version  of  Ps  74:8,  where  the  margin  of  Revised 
  Version  has  "places  of  assembly,"  which  is  probably  correct;  for 
  while  the  origin  of  synagogues  is  unknown,  it  may  well  be 
  supposed  that  buildings  or  tents  for  the  accommodation  of 
  worshippers  may  have  existed  in  the  land  from  an  early  time,  and 
  thus  the  system  of  synagogues  would  be  gradually  developed. 
 
  Some  however,  are  of  opinion  that  it  was  specially  during  the 
  Babylonian  captivity  that  the  system  of  synagogue  worship,  if 
  not  actually  introduced,  was  at  least  reorganized  on  a 
  systematic  plan  (Ezek.  8:1;  14:1).  The  exiles  gathered  together 
  for  the  reading  of  the  law  and  the  prophets  as  they  had 
  opportunity,  and  after  their  return  synagogues  were  established 
  all  over  the  land  (Ezra  8:15;  Neh.  8:2).  In  after  years,  when 
  the  Jews  were  dispersed  abroad,  wherever  they  went  they  erected 
  synagogues  and  kept  up  the  stated  services  of  worship  (Acts 
  9:20;  13:5;  17:1;  17:17;  18:4).  The  form  and  internal 
  arrangements  of  the  synagogue  would  greatly  depend  on  the  wealth 
  of  the  Jews  who  erected  it  and  on  the  place  where  it  was  built. 
  "Yet  there  are  certain  traditional  pecularities  which  have 
  doubtless  united  together  by  a  common  resemblance  the  Jewish 
  synagogues  of  all  ages  and  countries.  The  arrangements  for  the 
  women's  place  in  a  separate  gallery  or  behind  a  partition  of 
  lattice-work;  the  desk  in  the  centre,  where  the  reader,  like 
  Ezra  in  ancient  days,  from  his  'pulpit  of  wood,'  may  'open  the 
  book  in  the  sight  of  all  of  people  and  read  in  the  book  of  the 
  law  of  God  distinctly,  and  give  the  sense  and  cause  them  to 
  understand  the  reading'  (Neh.  8:4,  8);  the  carefully  closed  ark 
  on  the  side  of  the  building  nearest  to  Jerusalem,  for  the 
  preservation  of  the  rolls  or  manuscripts  of  the  law;  the  seats 
  all  round  the  building,  whence  'the  eyes  of  all  them  that  are  in 
  the  synagogue'  may  'be  fastened'  on  him  who  speaks  (Luke  4:20); 
  the  'chief  seats'  (Matt.  23:6)  which  were  appropriated  to  the 
  'ruler'  or  'rulers'  of  the  synagogue,  according  as  its 
  organization  may  have  been  more  or  less  complete;",  these  were 
  features  common  to  all  the  synagogues. 
 
  Where  perfected  into  a  system,  the  services  of  the  synagogue, 
  which  were  at  the  same  hours  as  those  of  the  temple,  consisted, 
  (1)  of  prayer,  which  formed  a  kind  of  liturgy,  there  were  in  all 
  eighteen  prayers;  (2)  the  reading  of  the  Scriptures  in  certain 
  definite  portions;  and  (3)  the  exposition  of  the  portions  read. 
  (See  Luke  4:15,  22;  Acts  13:14.) 
 
  The  synagogue  was  also  sometimes  used  as  a  court  of 
  judicature,  in  which  the  rulers  presided  (Matt.  10:17;  Mark 
  5:22;  Luke  12:11;  21:12;  Acts  13:15;  22:19);  also  as  public 
  schools. 
 
  The  establishment  of  synagogues  wherever  the  Jews  were  found 
  in  sufficient  numbers  helped  greatly  to  keep  alive  Israel's  hope 
  of  the  coming  of  the  Messiah,  and  to  prepare  the  way  for  the 
  spread  of  the  gospel  in  other  lands.  The  worship  of  the 
  Christian  Church  was  afterwards  modelled  after  that  of  the 
  synagogue. 
 
  Christ  and  his  disciples  frequently  taught  in  the  synagogues 
  (Matt.  13:54;  Mark  6:2;  John  18:20;  Acts  13:5,  15,  44;  14:1; 
  17:2-4,  10,  17;  18:4,  26;  19:8). 
 
  To  be  "put  out  of  the  synagogue,"  a  phrase  used  by  John  (9:22; 
  12:42;  16:2),  means  to  be  excommunicated. 
 




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