The tabernacle Moses erected in the wilderness had two altars, the altar of burnt offering (Ex 27:1-8; 38:1, 2), and the altar of incense (ch 30:1-10). The altar of burnt offering, made of acacia wood and overlaid with bronze, was 3 cu. (about 5 ft. 2 in. [1.55 m.]) high and 5 cu. (about 8 ft. 7 in. [2.56 m.]) square. Bronze horns extended from each top corner, and a grating of the same metal was fitted inside the altar. Rings were attached to two sides, through which poles might be placed for the purpose of transportation as the Israelites moved from place to place. The altar stood in the outer court, near the door of the tabernacle leading to the first apartment (ch 40:29). The Mosaic law forbade local altars after a central place of worship should be chosen (Deut 12:10-14), yet they were apparently permitted before the Temple was built (see 1 Sa 7:10; 9:12, 13; 1 Sa 14:35; 1 Chr 21:26). The altar of burnt offering in the Temple built by Solomon was made of bronze. It was 10 cu. (about 17 ft. 2 in. [5.14 m.]) high and 20 cu. (about 34 ft. 4 in. [10.29 m.]) square (2 Chr 4:1). These measurements are given in terms of Egyptian cubits -- Seventh-day Adventist Bible Dictionary.

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