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published: 10/8/13

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The Table of Showbread

What was the Table of Showbread?


The table of showbread is to be distinguished from the altar of incense.

It has become the fashion of the newer criticism to deny the existence of the altar of incense in preexilic times, and to explain the allusion to it in 1 Kings 6:20 as the table of showbread (so in Ezekiel 41:22 ).

The other references (1 Kings 6:22 ; 1 Kings 7:48 ; 1 Kings 9:25 ) are dismissed as interpolations. The procedure is radically vicious. The table of showbread is not an "altar," though the altar is once spoken of as a "table" (Ezekiel 41:22 ). There was only one altar of incense (1 Kings 6:20 ), but (in 2 Chronicles 4:8 ) ten tables of showbread.

The Tabernacle
The Priests and Levites The Holy of Holies
The Courtyard of the Tabernacle The Breastplate of the High Priest
The Bronze Laver The Veil of the Tabernacle
The Horns of the Altar The Ark of the Covenant
The Holy Place Manna
The Lampstand The Ten Commandments
The Table of Showbread (this page) Aaron's Rod
The Altar of Incense Aaron
Sacrifices in the Bible The Red Heifer
Feasts and Fasts in Israel The Day of Atonement


International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, which is in the public domain (with minor edits).