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Meaning of dispensation

dis•pen•sa•tion

Pronunciation: (dis"pun-sā'shun, -pen-), [key]
— n.
  1. an act or instance of dispensing; distribution.
  2. something that is distributed or given out.
  3. a certain order, system, or arrangement; administration or management.
  4. the old Mosaic, or Jewish, dispensation; the new gospel, or Christian, dispensation.
    1. the divine ordering of the affairs of the world.
    2. an appointment, arrangement, or favor, as by God.
    3. a divinely appointed order or age:the old Mosaic, or Jewish, dispensation; the new gospel, or Christian, dispensation.
  5. a dispensing with, doing away with, or doing without something.
  6. a dispensation regarding the Lenten fast.
    1. a relaxation of law in a particular case granted by a competent superior or the superior's delegate in laws that the superior has the power to make and enforce:a dispensation regarding the Lenten fast.
    2. an official document authorizing such a relaxation of law.
Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.
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