The Philistines Capture the Ark
4 1 And the word of Samuel is to all Israel, and Israel goeth out to meet the Philistines for battle, and they encamp by Eben-Ezer, and the Philistines have encamped in Aphek, 2 and the Philistines set themselves in array to meet Israel, and the battle spreadeth itself, and Israel is smitten before the Philistines, and they smite among the ranks in the field about four thousand men. 3 And the people cometh in unto the camp, and the elders of Israel say, 'Why hath Jehovah smitten us to-day before the Philistines? we take unto us from Shiloh the ark of the covenant of Jehovah, and it cometh into our midst, and He doth save us out of the hand of our enemies.' 4 And the people sendeth to Shiloh, and they take up thence the ark of the covenant of Jehovah of Hosts, inhabiting the cherubs, and there 'are' two sons of Eli, with the ark of the covenant of God, Hophni and Phinehas. 5 And it cometh to pass, at the coming in of the ark of the covenant of Jehovah unto the camp, that all Israel shout—a great shout—and the earth is moved. 6 And the Philistines hear the noise of the shouting, and say, 'What 'is' the noise of this great shout in the camp of the Hebrews?' and they perceive that the ark of Jehovah hath come in unto the camp. 7 And the Philistines are afraid, for they said, 'God hath come in unto the camp;' and they say, 'Wo to us, for there hath not been like this heretofore. 8 Wo to us, who doth deliver us out of the hand of these honourable gods? these 'are' the gods who are smiting the Egyptians with every plague in the wilderness. 9 Strengthen yourselves, and become men, O Philistines, lest ye do service to Hebrews, as they have done to you—then ye have become men, and have fought.'
10 And the Philistines fight, and Israel is smitten, and they flee each to his tents, and the blow is very great, and there fall of Israel thirty thousand footmen; 11 and the ark of God hath been taken, and the two sons of Eli have died, Hophni and Phinehas.
12 And a man of Benjamin runneth out of the ranks, and cometh into Shiloh, on that day, and his long robes 'are' rent, and earth on his head; 13 and he cometh in, and lo, Eli is sitting on the throne by the side of the way, watching, for his heart hath been trembling for the ark of God, and the man hath come in to declare 'it' in the city, and all the city crieth out. 14 And Eli heareth the noise of the cry, and saith, 'What—the noise of this tumult!' And the man hasted, and cometh in, and declareth to Eli. 15 And Eli is a son of ninety and eight years, and his eyes have stood, and he hath not been able to see. 16 And the man saith unto Eli, 'I 'am' he who hath come out of the ranks, and I out of the ranks have fled to-day;' and he saith, 'What hath been the matter, my son?' 17 And he who is bearing tidings answereth and saith, 'Israel hath fled before the Philistines, and also a great slaughter hath been among the people, and also thy two sons have died—Hophni and Phinehas—and the ark of God hath been captured.' 18 And it cometh to pass, at his mentioning the ark of God, that he falleth from off the throne backward, by the side of the gate, and his neck is broken, and he dieth, for the man 'is' old and heavy, and he hath judged Israel forty years.
19 And his daughter-in-law, wife of Phinehas, 'is' pregnant, about to bear, and she heareth the report of the taking of the ark of God, that her father-in-law and her husband have died, and she boweth, and beareth, for her pains have turned upon her. 20 And at the time of her death, when the women who are standing by her say, 'Fear not, for a son thou hast borne,' she hath not answered, nor set her heart 'to it'; 21 and she calleth the youth I-Chabod, saying, 'Honour hath removed from Israel,' because of the taking of the ark of God, and because of her father-in-law and her husband. 22 And she saith, 'Honour hath removed from Israel, for the ark of God hath been taken.'
The Ark in the Land of the Philistines
5 1 And the Philistines have taken the ark of God, and bring it in from Eben-Ezer to Ashdod, 2 and the Philistines take the ark of God and bring it into the house of Dagon, and set it near Dagon. 3 And the Ashdodites rise early on the morrow, and lo, Dagon is fallen on its face to the earth, before the ark of Jehovah; and they take Dagon, and put it back to its place. 4 And they rise early in the morning on the morrow, and lo, Dagon is fallen on its face to the earth, before the ark of Jehovah, and the head of Dagon, and the two palms of its hands are cut off at the threshold, only the fishy part hath been left to him; 5 therefore the priests of Dagon, and all those coming into the house of Dagon, tread not on the threshold of Dagon, in Ashdod, till this day.
6 And the hand of Jehovah is heavy on the Ashdodites, and He maketh them desolate, and smiteth them with emerods, Ashdod and its borders. 7 And the men of Ashdod see that 'it is' so, and have said, 'The ark of the God of Israel doth not abide with us, for hard hath been His hand upon us, and upon Dagon our god.' 8 And they send and gather all the princes of the Philistines unto them, and say, 'What do we do to the ark of the God of Israel?' and they say, 'To Gath let the ark of the God of Israel be brought round;' and they bring round the ark of the God of Israel; 9 and it cometh to pass after they have brought it round, that the hand of Jehovah is against the city—a very great destruction; and He smiteth the men of the city, from small even unto great; and break forth on them do emerods. 10 And they send the ark of God to Ekron, and it cometh to pass, at the coming in of the ark of God to Ekron, that the Ekronites cry out, saying, 'They have brought round unto us the ark of the God of Israel, to put us to death—and our people.' 11 And they send and gather all the princes of the Philistines, and say, 'Send away the ark of the God of Israel, and it turneth back to its place, and it doth not put us to death—and our people;' for there hath been a deadly destruction throughout all the city, very heavy hath the hand of God been there, 12 and the men who have not died have been smitten with emerods, and the cry of the city goeth up into the heavens.
The Philistines Return the Ark
6 1 And the ark of Jehovah is in the field of the Philistines seven months, 2 and the Philistines call for priests and for diviners, saying, 'What do we do to the ark of Jehovah? let us know wherewith we send it to its place?' 3 And they say, 'If ye are sending away the ark of the God of Israel, ye do not send it away empty; for ye do certainly send back to Him a guilt-offering; then ye are healed, and it hath been known to you why His hand doth not turn aside from you.' 4 And they say, 'What 'is' the guilt-offering which we send back to Him?' and they say, 'The number of the princes of the Philistines—five golden emerods, and five golden mice—for one plague 'is' to you all, and to your princes, 5 and ye have made images of your emerods, and images of your mice that are corrupting the land, and have given honour to the God of Israel; it may be He doth lighten His hand from off you, and from off your gods, and from off your land; 6 and why do ye harden your heart as the Egyptians and Pharaoh hardened their heart? do they not—when He hath rolled Himself upon them—send them away, and they go? 7 'And now, take and make one new cart, and two suckling kine, on which a yoke hath not gone up, and ye have bound the kine in the cart, and caused their young ones to turn back from after them to the house, 8 and ye have taken the ark of Jehovah, and put it on the cart, and the vessels of gold which ye have returned to Him—a guilt-offering—ye put in a coffer on its side, and have sent it away, and it hath gone; 9 and ye have seen, if the way of its own border it goeth up to Beth-Shemesh—He hath done to us this great evil; and if not, then we have known that His hand hath not come against us; an accident it hath been to us.'
10 And the men do so, and take two suckling kine, and bind them in the cart, and their young ones they have shut up in the house; 11 and they place the ark of Jehovah upon the cart, and the coffer, and the golden mice, and the images of their emerods. 12 And the kine go straight in the way, on the way to Beth-Shemesh, in one highway they have gone, going and lowing, and have not turned aside right or left; and the princes of the Philistines are going after them unto the border of Beth-Shemesh. 13 And the Beth-Shemeshites are reaping their wheat-harvest in the valley, and they lift up their eyes, and see the ark, and rejoice to see 'it'. 14 And the cart hath come in unto the field of Joshua the Beth-Shemeshite, and standeth there, and there 'is' a great stone, and they cleave the wood of the cart, and the kine they have caused to ascend—a burnt-offering to Jehovah. 15 And the Levites have taken down the ark of Jehovah, and the coffer which 'is' with it, in which 'are' the vessels of gold, and place 'them' on the great stone; and the men of Beth-Shemesh have caused to ascend burnt-offerings and sacrifice sacrifices in that day to Jehovah; 16 and the five princes of the Philistines have seen 'it', and turn back 'to' Ekron, on that day. 17 And these 'are' the golden emerods which the Philistines have sent back—a guilt-offering to Jehovah: for Ashdod one, for Gaza one, for Ashkelon one, for Gath one, for Ekron one; 18 and the golden mice—the number of all the cities of the Philistines—for the five princes, from the fenced city even unto the hamlet of the villages, even unto the great meadow on which they placed the ark of Jehovah—'are' unto this day in the field of Joshua the Beth-Shemeshite.
19 And He smiteth among the men of Beth-Shemesh, for they looked into the ark of Jehovah, yea, He smiteth among the people seventy men—fifty chief men; and the people mourn, because Jehovah smote among the people—a great smiting. 20 And the men of Beth-Shemesh say, 'Who is able to stand before Jehovah, this holy God? and unto whom doth He go up from us?' 21 And they send messengers unto the inhabitants of Kirjath-Jearim, saying, 'The Philistines have sent back the ark of Jehovah; come down, take it up unto you.'
7 1 And the men of Kirjath-Jearim come and bring up the ark of Jehovah, and bring it in unto the house of Abinadab, in the height, and Eleazar his son they have sanctified to keep the ark of Jehovah. 2 And it cometh to pass, from the day of the dwelling of the ark in Kirjath-Jearim, that the days are multiplied—yea, they are twenty years—and wail do all the house of Israel after Jehovah.
Samuel Judges Israel
3 And Samuel speaketh unto all the house of Israel, saying, 'If with all your heart ye are turning back unto Jehovah—turn aside the gods of the stranger from your midst, and Ashtaroth; and prepare your heart unto Jehovah, and serve Him only, and He doth deliver you out of the hand of the Philistines.' 4 And the sons of Israel turn aside the Baalim and Ashtaroth, and serve Jehovah alone; 5 and Samuel saith, 'Gather all Israel to Mizpeh, and I pray for you unto Jehovah.' 6 And they are gathered to Mizpeh, and draw water, and pour out before Jehovah, and fast on that day, and say there, 'We have sinned against Jehovah;' and Samuel judgeth the sons of Israel in Mizpeh.
7 And the Philistines hear that the sons of Israel have gathered themselves to Mizpeh; and the princes of the Philistines go up against Israel, and the sons of Israel hear, and are afraid of the presence of the Philistines. 8 And the sons of Israel say unto Samuel, 'Keep not silent for us from crying unto Jehovah our God, and He doth save us out of the hand of the Philistines.' 9 And Samuel taketh a fat lamb, and causeth it to go up—a burnt-offering whole to Jehovah; and Samuel crieth unto Jehovah for Israel, and Jehovah answereth him; 10 and Samuel is causing the burnt-offering to go up—and the Philistines have drawn nigh to battle against Israel—and Jehovah doth thunder with a great noise, on that day, upon the Philistines, and troubleth them, and they are smitten before Israel. 11 And the men of Israel go out from Mizpeh, and pursue the Philistines, and smite them unto the place of Beth-Car. 12 And Samuel taketh a stone, and setteth 'it' between Mizpeh and Shen, and calleth its name Eben-Ezer, saying, 'Hitherto hath Jehovah helped us.'
13 And the Philistines are humbled, and have not added any more to come into the border of Israel, and the hand of Jehovah is on the Philistines all the days of Samuel. 14 And the cities which the Philistines have taken from Israel are restored to Israel—from Ekron even unto Gath—and their border hath Israel delivered out of the hand of the Philistines; and there is peace between Israel and the Amorite. 15 And Samuel judgeth Israel all the days of his life, 16 and he hath gone from year to year, and gone round Beth-El, and Gilgal, and Mizpeh, and judged Israel 'in' all these places; 17 and his returning 'is' to Ramath, for there 'is' his house, and there he hath judged Israel, and he buildeth there an altar to Jehovah.
Israel Asks for a King
8 1 And it cometh to pass, when Samuel 'is' aged, that he maketh his sons judges over Israel. 2 And the name of his first-born son is Joel, and the name of his second Abiah, judges in Beer-Sheba: 3 and his sons have not walked in his ways, and turn aside after the dishonest gain, and take a bribe, and turn aside judgment.
4 And all the elders of Israel gather themselves together, and come in unto Samuel to Ramath, 5 and say unto him, 'Lo, thou hast become aged, and thy sons have not walked in thy ways; now, appoint to us a king, to judge us, like all the nations.' 6 And the thing is evil in the eyes of Samuel, when they have said, 'Give to us a king to judge us;' and Samuel prayeth unto Jehovah. 7 And Jehovah saith unto Samuel, 'Hearken to the voice of the people, to all that they say unto thee, for thee they have not rejected, but Me they have rejected, from reigning over them. 8 According to all the works that they have done from the day of My bringing them up out of Egypt, even unto this day, when they forsake Me, and serve other gods—so they are doing also to thee. 9 And now, hearken to their voice; only, surely thou dost certainly protest to them, and hast declared to them the custom of the king who doth reign over them.' 10 And Samuel speaketh all the words of Jehovah unto the people who are asking from him a king, 11 and saith, 'This is the custom of the king who doth reign over you: Your sons he doth take, and hath appointed for himself among his chariots, and among his horsemen, and they have run before his chariots; 12 also to appoint for himself heads of thousands, and heads of fifties; also to plow his plowing, and to reap his reaping; and to make instruments of his war, and instruments of his charioteer. 13 'And your daughters he doth take for perfumers, and for cooks, and for bakers; 14 and your fields, and your vineyards, and your olive-yards—the best—he doth take, and hath given to his servants. 15 And your seed and your vineyards he doth tithe, and hath given to his eunuchs, and to his servants. 16 And your men-servants, and your maid-servants, and your young men—the best, and your asses, he doth take, and hath prepared for his own work; 17 your flock he doth tithe, and ye are to him for servants. 18 And ye have cried out in that day because of the king whom ye have chosen for yourselves, and Jehovah doth not answer you in that day.' 19 And the people refuse to hearken to the voice of Samuel, and say, 'Nay, but a king is over us, 20 and we have been, even we, like all the nations; and our king hath judged us, and gone out before us, and fought our battles.' 21 And Samuel heareth all the words of the people, and speaketh them in the ears of Jehovah; 22 and Jehovah saith unto Samuel, 'Hearken to their voice, and thou hast caused to reign over them a king.' And Samuel saith unto the men of Israel, 'Go ye each to his city.'