Court of the Sanctuary
kort, sank’~-tu-a-ri: By "court" (chatser) is meant a clear space enclosed by curtains or walls, or surrounded by buildings. It was always an uncovered enclosure, but might have within its area one or more edifices.
1. The Tabernacle:
The first occurrence of the word is in
2. Solomon’s Temple:
The fundamental conception out of which grew the resolve to build a temple for the worship of Yahweh was that the new structure was to be an enlarged duplicate in stone of the tent of meeting (see Temple). The doubling in size of the holy chambers was accompanied by a doubling of the enclosed area upon which the holy house was to stand. Hitherto a rectangular oblong figure of 150 ft. in length and 75 ft. in breadth had sufficed for the needs of the people in their worship. Now an area of 300 ft. in length and 150 ft. in breadth was enclosed within heavy stone walls, making, as before, two squares, each of 150 ft. This was that "court of the priests" spoken of in
3. The Great Court:
In distinction from this "inner" court a second or "outer" court was built by Solomon, spoken of by the Chronicler as "the great court" (
4. Ezekiel’s Temple:
In Ezekiel’s plan of the temple yet to be built, the lines of the temple courts as he had known them in Jerusalem are followed. Two squares enclosed in stone walling, each of 150 ft., lie North and South of one another, and bear the distinctive names, "the inner court" and "the outer court" (
5. Temple of Herod:
In the Herodian temple the old nomenclature gives place to a new set of terms. The extensive enclosure known later as "the court of the Gentiles" does not appear under that name in the Temple; and compare G. A. Smith, Jerusalem, II, 506- 9, with the reconstruction of Waterhouse in Sacred Sites of the Gospels, 111 ff). For the "women’s court," see Treasury.or in Josephus What we have in the tract Middoth of the Mishna and in Josephus is the mention of two courts, the "court of the priests" and "the court of Israel" (Middoth, ii.6; v. 1; Josephus, BJ, V, v, 6). The data in regard to both are difficult and conflicting. In Middoth they appear as long narrow strips of 11 cubits in breadth extending at right angles to the temple and the altar across the enclosure--the "court of Israel" being railed off from the "court of the priests" on the East; the latter extending backward as far as the altar, which has a distinct measurement. The design was to prevent the too near approach of the lay Israelite to the altar. Josephus makes the 11 cubits of the "court of Israel" extend round the whole "court of the priests, " inclusive of altar and temple (see
Many expressions in the Psalms show how great was the attachment of the devout-minded Hebrew in all ages to those courts of the Lord’s house where he was accustomed to worship (e.g.
W. Shaw Caldecott