1 Samuel 5 (Lexham English Bible)

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The Ark of the Covenant among the Philistines

1 Now [the] Philistines had captureda the ark of God and brought it from Ebenezer to Ashdod. 2 Then [the] Philistines took the ark of God and brought it to the temple of Dagon and placed it beside Dagon. 3 When the Ashdodites got up early the next morning, {there was}b Dagon fallen with his face to the ground before the ark of Yahweh! So they took Dagon and returned him to his place. 4 When they got up early in the morning the next day, {there was}c Dagon fallen [again] with his face to the ground before the ark of Yahweh! The head of Dagon and the palms of his two hands were cut off, lying atd the threshold; only [the body]e of Dagon was left. 5 (Therefore the priests of Dagon and all who come into the house of Dagon do not tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod until this [very] day.) 6 Now the hand of Yahweh was heavy against the Ashdodites and he destroyed them and struck them with tumors,f both in Ashdod and its territories. 7 The men of Ashdod saw [that] it [was] so, and they said, "The ark of the God of Israel should not remain with us, because his hand [is] harsh on us and on Dagon our god!" 8 So they sent and gathered all the rulers of [the] Philistines to them, and they asked, "What shall we do with the ark of the God of Israel?" And they said, "Let the ark of the God of Israel be brought around toward Gath." So they moved the ark of the God of Israel [to Gath]. 9 After they moved it, the hand of Yahweh was against the city, causing a very great confusion, and he struck the men of the city {from the youngest to the oldest},g causing tumorsh to break out on them. 10 So they sent the ark of God [to] Ekron. But when the ark of God came [to] Ekron, the Ekronites cried out, saying, "They have brought around the ark of the God of Israel to kill us and ouri people!" 11 So they sent and gathered all the rulers of [the] Philistines, and they said, "Send away the ark of the God of Israel and let it return to its place, so that it will not kill us and our people." For a {deadly confusion}j was throughout all the city; the hand of God was very heavy there. 12 The men who did not die were struck with [the] tumors,k so that the cry of the city for help went up [to] heaven.
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