Bethel

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Bethel

(bĕth`əl) [Heb.,=house of God]. 1 Ancient city of central Palestine, the modern Baytin, the West Bank, N of Jerusalem. According to the Bible, where it is frequently mentioned, it was originally called Luz (see LuzLuz
, in the Bible. 1 Place in ancient Palestine, apparently to be identified with Bethel (1.) 2 City of N ancient Palestine.
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 (1)). The Book of Genesis relates that Abraham built his first altar in Canaan here and that the name Bethel, given to Jacob's sacred stone, was then transferred to the town itself. At the time of the Judges it was a national shrine. It temporarily harbored the Ark of the Covenant. Bethel lost its preeminence as a Jewish shrine to Jerusalem; in 1 Kings, Jeroboam's attempt to establish Bethel as a rival religious capital failed. Bethel thereafter became increasingly associated with heathen worship—hence the denunciations by Amos and by Hosea, who called it Beth-avenBeth-aven
, in the Bible, town of ancient Palestine, between Bethel and Michmash. It is probably used as an abusive name for Bethel in the Book of Hosea. The prophet seems to use Aven (for Beth-aven) also in the same way.
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 [house of wickedness]. Modern excavations have disclosed a temple wall, water gate, and palace complex, indicating the site was once a flourishing Canaanite cultic center. 2 Unidentified place, S ancient Palestine, mentioned several times in the Bible; instances of Chesil, Bethul, and Bethuel in the Bible are thought to be alternate spellings of Bethel.

Bethel,

town (1990 pop. 17,541), Fairfield co., SW Conn.; inc. 1855. Manufactures include wire, textiles, fabricated-metal and tool-and-die products; chemicals; and electronic, dental, and optical components. There is commercial printing. P. T. BarnumBarnum, P. T.
(Phineas Taylor Barnum) , 1810–91, American showman, b. Bethel, Conn. As a youth Barnum worked at diverse sales jobs and managed a boardinghouse. He made his first sensation in 1835 when he bought and exhibited Joice Heth, a slave who claimed she was 161
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 was born in Bethel.

bethel

A place of worship.

Bethel

1. an ancient town in the West Bank, near Jerusalem: in the Old Testament, the place where the dream of Jacob occurred (Genesis 28:19)
2. a chapel of any of certain Nonconformist Christian sects