2. The pledge or token of an oath or solemn cobenant; a sacred thing; a mystery. "God sometimes sent a light of fire, and pillar of a cloud . . . And the sacrament of a rainbow, to guide his people through their portion of sorrows." (Jer. Taylor)
Synonyms: Sacrament, Eucharist.
Protestants apply the term sacrament to baptism and the Lord's Supper, especially the latter. The R. Cath. And Greek churches have five other sacraments, viz, confirmation, penance, holy orders, matrimony, and extreme unction. As sacrament denotes an oath or vow, the word has been applied by way of emphasis to the Lord's Supper, where the most sacred vows are renewed by the Christian in commemorating the death of his Redeemer. Eucharist denotes the giving of thanks; and this term also has been applied to the same ordinance, as expressing the grateful remembrance of Christ's sufferings and death. "Some receive the sacrament as a means to procure great graces and blessings; others as an eucharist and an office of thanksgiving for what they have received."
Origin: L. Sacramentum an oath, a sacred thing, a mystery, a sacrament, fr. Sacrare to declare as sacred, sacer sacred: cf. F. Sacrament. See Sacred.
(01 Mar 1998)
|Bookmark with:||word visualiser||Go and visit our forums|